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Full text of "The reign of George VI. 1900-1925; a forecast written in the year 1763, republished"

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1900 1925 
















Accession and first acts of George VI. Ministerial changes. 

National Debt. State of Europe 5 



War with Russia. Naval defeat off the Dutch coast. Intre- 
pidity of the King. Transactions in Parliament. 
Invasion. Sack of Durham. Battle of Wetherby. 
Naval engagement 12 


A.D. I90I-I902. 

Military and naval preparations of the King. War with 
France. Invasion of Flanders. Battle of Winox. Rapid 
successes. The Russians defeated at sea. Peace of 
Beauvais ...... ; 24 




A.D. 1902-1916. 


Interest of the National Debt reduced. The building of the 
palace and city of Stanley. The Royal Academies. 
George VI. encourages the Arts, Sciences, and Literature 31 


A.D. 1917-1918. 

Russians and French attack the Empire. Battle of Augsburg. 
Battle of Lutzen. Siege of Vienna. George VI. assists 
the Emperor Frederick. Famous march. Battle of 
Vienna. Russians and French driven out of Germany. 
George attacks France, and enters Paris. Battle of Melun 43 


A.D. 1919. 

War renewed. Siege and relief of Orleans. The King 
wounded. Battle of Arleux. Battle of Alenfon. Death 
of Charles X. George re-enters Paris. Leaves France, 
.and returns to England 51 


A.D. 1919-1920. 

Foreign affairs. Spain and Russia intervene in the war. 
Treaty of Madrid. Preparations of Great-Britain. 
Parliament meets. Duke of Devonshire conquers Flanders 
and Holland 62 



A.D. 1920. 


Naval victories. Duke of Lerma marches into France. 
Motions of the British and French armies. Celebrated 
march. Philip arrives at Paris. Battle of Espalio n. 
Battle of Paris. The conquest of France. Conquest of 
Mexico. Philippine Islands reduced. Duke of Devon- 
shire enters Spain. General peace signed at Paris, 
Nov. i, 1920 70 


A.D. I92I-I922. 

State of the kingdom The parliament meets. Arts, 
Sciences, and Literature. Academy of Literature. Uni- 
versity. Gardens of Stanley. Public works. Manu- 
factures. Prosperity of the American Colonies ... 90 


A.D. 1922-1925. 

George VI. visits France. Government in France. New 
laws. Buildings. Encouragement of arts and sciences. 
George gives freedom and happiness to France. Finis 101 


OF late years it has been common enough for authors 
to comment on the political and social tendencies of 
their own day, by drawing fancy pictures of the state 
of the world many generations hence, when these 
tendencies have been worked out to their full develop- 
ment. From Lord Lytton's " Coming Race," published 
in 1871, down to Mr. Bellamy's "Looking Backward," 
and Mr. Wells's " When the Sleeper wakes," at least 
a dozen books have been written on these lines. But 
till last year I was not aware how far back the catena of 
this prophetical literature could be followed. Work- 
ing through the wrecks of an eighteenth-century library 
in the old-world town of Burford, I came on " The Reign 
of George VI.," a little book of 192 pages, issued anony- 
mously as long ago as 1763. As it deals with the years 
1900-1925, there seems to be a special appropriateness 
in republishing it just as the period of which it treats is 
coming upon us. The reader will, I think, allow that the 
interest of its contents is sufficient to justify its reissue 
for his benefit. There is a good deal of amusement, 
as well as of instruction, to be got from studying this 
forecast of the history of our own time, drawn four 
generations ago by an acute political thinker of the 
early years of George III. 


Like all books of its kind, " The Reign of George VI." 
has two sides. The author was not merely exercising 
the faculty of prophecy according to his lights, but 
was intending to influence the men of his own day by 
pointing out, in the actions of his puppets George VI., 
the Dukes of Bedford and Suffolk, and the rest what 
ought to be done and what avoided in the Year of 
Grace 1763. In domestic politics he was a Tory ; his 
nightmare was the perpetuation of that " battle of the 
kites and crows " the objectless strife of the Whig 
factions which had endured for the last two genera- 
tions. His panacea was the more active interference 
of the king with his ministers, and the recent doings 
of George III. had much encouraged him. Like the 
monarch whom he would fain advise, he must have 
been reading Bolingbroke's " Patriot King," and dream- 
ing of the realization of its ideals. Unfortunately, the 
young sovereign from whom he hoped so much is not 
the " Farmer George " of reality, but a sort of more 
amiable Frederick the Great a Heaven-sent general, 
who is also an enthusiastic patron of arts and letters. 
Did our author, we wonder, survive to learn the modesty 
of King George's military aspirations, or to hear of his 
interesting literary criticism as to Shakespeare's works 
being " sad stuff only one must not say so " ? 

In foreign affairs we find, from the first page of the 
book to the last, only two main ideas. Russia is the bug- 
bear of the future ; unless her wings are clipped, she will 
dominate all Northern and Eastern Europe, and become 


the bully of the world. We find that in 1900 she has 
not only devoured Poland and Finland and the Crimea, 
and all her actual conquests, but has also annexed the 
two Scandinavian monarchies a thing that appeared 
by no means impossible to an observer of 1763, when 
Gustavus III. had not yet arisen to put an end to the 
internal factions of the larger Northern realm. But if 
Russia is the great danger of the future to our author, 
France is the great danger of the present. She is 
unteachable and irreconcilable, and she must be 
smashed. There is no other way of dealing with her ; 
and after two of her gratuitous attacks, George VI. 
accomplishes with what seems to us astounding ease 
the complete conquest of the Bourbon realm. We leave 
France held down by English garrisons, and governed by 
an Anglo-French regency, as she had been in the days 
of Henry V. and his unfortunate son. Apparently our 
author finds finality in the carrying out of this rather 
drastic policy ! He had so badly gauged French 
patriotic sentiment, that he imagined that the nation 
could be bribed into acquiescence in foreign conquest 
by a liberal dose of trial by jury, habeas corpus, and 
the liberty of the press (pp. 102-105). " The French 
seemed to enjoy these benefits with a particular exul- 
tation, as they came from the hand of their conqueror ; 
happy for France, that it was conquered by such a 
patriot King ! " 

There is a strangely modern touch in the insistence 
of our author on the fact that England's greatest danger 


lies in the combination against her of Russia and France. 
It argues considerable penetration that he should have 
worked out for 1901 a crisis of this kind a thing that 
is quite within the limits of the probable. In 1763 
Russian politics were unscrupulous enough, but it was 
not very obvious that they would lead to the building 
up of the great empire which has since arisen. For 
when our author wrote, Catherine II. had but just come 
to her ill-gotten throne, and had given no clear promise 
of her after-career ; while her predecessors, since Peter 
the Great, had been creatures of very common clay. 
Nevertheless, the future of Russia is accurately foreseen ; 
indeed, her coming greatness is even overstated, for in 
1900 she is made the second, instead of the third, naval 
power in Europe, and her land dominions as we have 
already remarked are made to extend to the North 
Sea, instead of merely to the Gulf of Finland. 

Looking round the rest of Europe, we find in our 
prophecy much that has been fulfilled, as well as 
much that is hopelessly wrong. The Turk is still at 
Constantinople, though his northern borders have been 
clipped close by Russia (p. 28). The supremacy 
in Germany has passed from the Hapsburgs to 
the house of Brandenburg, and Frederick IX. of 
Hohenzollern, " a weak Prince, governed by his 
Queen," holds the Imperial title in 1900. A political 
prophet, fresh from witnessing the glories of Frederick 
the Great, might venture on such a forecast ; but he 
is not happy in making it the result of a marriage 


a thing most unlikely to occur between the heir of 
the Protestant Hohenzollerns and the heiress of the 
Catholic Hapsburgs. No one could possibly have 
foreseen the actual details of the great change in 
Central Europe the suppression, in 1805, of the old 
" Holy Roman Empire " by Napoleon (born six years 
after our book was written), and the creation, sixty- 
five years later, of the new Deutsches Reich under 
William I. of Prussia. The Germany of 1900, as our 
author sees it, is a perpetuation of the elder empire, 
not a newly formed state. Electors of Bavaria and 
Hanover, Dukes of Saxony, and similar princes of the 
eighteenth-century sort, are its chief moving powers. 
How, by the way, Hanover has got separated from 
England, and has an elector again, while yet the male 
line of the Guelfs survives on this side of the Channel, we 
are never told. Presumably it is a result of some of the 
unfortunate wars of George V., vaguely hinted at on p. 3. 
Italian unity was another of the events of the future 
which our author foresaw. Nearly all the Peninsula 
is under one king in 1900 : Turin, Milan, Rome, and 
Naples all obey the same master. " The patrimony of 
St. Peter had long been wrested from the Church," and 
the temporal power of the Popes is over. But two 
unfortunate forecasts are made in sketching the Italy 
of 1900. Its king is not a member of the house of 
Savoy, but a descendant of Charles of Naples, the 
bustling and well-served " Don Carlos," whose successes 
our author must have had in his head, when he conceived 


the idea so grotesquely impossible to us of a Sicilian 
Bourbon seated on the Roman throne. The other 
failure in his prophecy is the survival of a small 
Venetian state in North-Eastern Italy: a king (of 
uncertain origin) rules instead of a doge at Venice, 
and his existence has been prolonged by the aid of 
France, "who has always found her account in inter- 
meddling with the affairs of Italy" (p. n). 

The history of the Iberian Peninsula has not been 
so happily foreshadowed by our author as that of 
the Italian. It was permissible for a contemporary of 
our vigorous enemy, Charles III. who did as much for 
Spain as he did for Naples to believe that the realm of 
the younger Bourbon house had still some possibilities 
of revival in her. So the nineteenth-century history of 
Spain is no miserable story of Godoys and Esparteros, 
but fairly prosperous. Portugal is conquered and 
absorbed somewhere early in the century, and Sardinia 
has returned to the Spanish allegiance, apparently when 
the rest of the dominions of the house of Savoy, in 
common with the other Italian states, were annexed by 
the victorious Bourbon king of the Two Sicilies. It will 
strike the reader as strange to find that Spain has also 
contrived to recover Gibraltar (p. 85), and apparently 
Minorca also, so that Great Britain has no foothold left 
in the Mediterranean. Moreover, the whole of Spain's 
American empire is intact : Mexico, Peru, and Venezuela 
are not the spawning-ground of dictators and Pronun- 
ciamentos, but peaceful and supine viceroyalties under 


the Bourbon crown, with little fighting power in them. 
Brazil, in consequence of the conquest of Portugal, has 
become a Spanish province, like the great lands to the 
west and south of it. It is hard for us, to whom the 
rebellion of colonies is an only too well-known 
phenomenon, to conceive how unlikely it must have 
appeared, to an observer of 1763, that the great posses- 
sions in the New World would ever develop a national 
spirit, and cut themselves adrift from their mother- 
countries. Spain, it is to be noted, is not only still 
dominant in America, but has retained the Philippines, 
which form the goal of an English invasion in 1920. 

Of the minor states of Europe, as they stood in 1763, 
our author has allowed few to survive. He was a 
consistent believer in the idea that they were destined 
to be absorbed by their larger neighbours. The Swiss 
Confederation is still in existence (p. 64), but no other 
third-rate power, save the imaginary kingdom of Venice. 
Portugal has been devoured by Spain ; Sweden, Denmark, 
and Norway (no less than Poland), by Russia ; while 
France, somewhere about 1850, has overrun and annexed 
the Austrian Netherlands and Holland. " The Dutch, 
whose spirits were sunk in their slavery, had no inclina- 
tion to assist their cruel masters. But they were kept 
too much in awe by the French garrisons in their several 
fortresses to listen to a deliverer." The minor Italian 
states, save Venice, have been incorporated, long ere 
1900, in the enlarged kingdom ruled by the Neapolitan 
Bourbons. That the nineteenth century would see the 


creation of half a dozen new principalities in the Balkan 
Peninsula our author did not dream. He makes the 
Sultan still master of all the lands as far as the 

We have left the description of France to the last, as 
it is the continental state on which most attention is 
bestowed. The French Revolution is an event of which 
our author has not the 'remotest foreboding. The 
France of 1900 is to him still the centralized, ill-governed 
despotism of his own day. " The nobility were absolute 
lords on their own estates, but the slaves of their monarch, 
and the first to bear his fury" (p. 104). "The Parle- 
ments had formerly raised commotions in this kingdom r 
by their obstinacy in refusing to register the royal 
edicts: but this appearance of liberty was now entirely at 
an end." " Superstition and enthusiam " rule the lower 
classes, only tempered after 1920 by "the great number of 
books that swarmed from the press, which ridiculed and 
subverted the Roman Catholic religion." The towns 
had, in many provinces, fallen into decay, the state was 
half ruined, but " a cunning and political prince," King 
Charles X. is still pursuing the aggressive policy of his 
ancestor Louis XIV., keeping Italy astir, preying on the 
ill-compacted German Empire, and oppressing millions 
of discontented Netherlanders. In alliance with his con- 
federate Czar Peter IV., he is able to dominate Europe, 
till, engaging in an unprovoked war with England, he 
loses both his life and his crown in 1919. Finally, 
national spirit is so dead, as we have already remarked, 


that at the end of the disastrous struggle with George VI., 
the French monarchy is content to endure a permanent 
foreign garrison, and to be governed by a foreign 
regency. Let us hope that our author was still a 
young man in 1763, and survived for a quarter of a 
century to witness the outburst of 1789 and the wars 

of 1792-97. 

Turning from the Continent to our own realm, we 
find much to astonish us in the England of 1900. The 
feature which will most amuse the reader is the state 
of our domestic politics. We are still in the midst of 
eighteenth-century factions and parliamentary corruption. 
The fate of ministries depends on the intrigues of a 
knot of Whig dukes, each provided with his following 
in the Lower House. The most objectionable and un- 
patriotic of them is the Duke of Bedford, a personage 
obviously modelled on that prince of jobbers, Thomas 
Holies, Duke of Newcastle, whom a Tory writer of the 
early years of George III. might well take as his bete 
noire. Like Newcastle in 1762, this nobleman sticks at 
the head of the Treasury, in a cabinet which is anxious 
to get rid of him, but has to endure him, because of his 
"prodigious parliamentary interest." He intrigues 
against his colleagues, sets his hirelings in the Commons 
to vote against the ministry, and finally chooses the 
moment of an invasion of England to force the dismissal 
of his rivals on the king (p. 17). This is the precise 
line of conduct which Newcastle adopted in 1745-46, 
when he bullied Gecrge II. into getting rid of Carteret ; 


by resigning his office, just as the Jacobite rising was at 
its height and the French were reported to be embarking 
at Dunkirk. It ultimately requires a sort of coup (Tetat 
on the king's part to get rid of the baneful influence of 
this unpatriotic statesman. His Majesty descends on 
the Commons, much as Charles I. attempted to do on 
January 4, 1642, and gives them a sound rating, accom- 
panied by many vague threats. Thereupon the overawed 
assembly forget their terror of the duke, and grant his 
irate master the subsidies that he demands. A beautiful 
side light on the possibilities of eighteenth-century 
politics is given by the fact that before declaring war on 
England, Czar Peter IV. " had conveyed immense sums 
into the kingdom, and had most politically distributed 
them to the most advantageous purposes ; he had secured 
a large party, and this . . . obstructed every measure 
proposed for coming to some speedy resolutions " (p. 17). 
Reading this, we fancy that we are in the days of 
Charles II. rather than those of George III. But 
evidently a hot partisan in 1763 might still believe that 
those who differed from him on external politics had 
been bought with foreign gold. French politicians of 
the more excitable sort are under the same impression 

Looking through the lists of the old cabinets of the 
eighteenth century, we are often surprised to note the 
enormous proportion of the ministers who sat in the 
Upper House. But we are bound to say that our author 
overdoes the matter in absolutely raining dukes upon 


us. In the first ministry of George VI. (1900), "the 
Duke of Bedford was continued as Lord High Treasurer. 
The Duke of Northumberland was removed from being 
president of the council, and succeeded by the Earl of 
Surrey (son of the Duke of Norfolk). The Duke of Marl- 
borough was made Secretary of State for the Southern 
department, and the Duke of Suffolk Lord Privy-Seal, 
in the room of the Duke of St. Albans, while the Duke 
of Grafton became first Lord of the Admiralty, a 
post just vacant by the death of the Duke of Athol " 
(p. 6). 

On a first reading of this book I had fancied that the 
Duke of Suffolk, the right-hand man of King George VI., 
was a reflection of Lord Bute. But I fancy that this 
cannot be so : our author, though a sincere Tory, is very 
bitter against Bute's Peace of Paris, concluded a few 
months before he wrote his pamphlet : " our late peace," 
he writes, " was not altogetJier so advantageous as minis- 
terial writers would have us think, and our moderation 
was rather a little ill-timed" (Preface, p. xxxi.). Nor was 
Bute either " originally of a mean family," or " one who 
had travelled through the principal courts of Europe, and 
understood all their interests and connections with 
abundance of ease and perspicuity " (p. 7). I conclude, 
then, that Suffolk represents the minister whom George 
III. otight to have met, rather than the one who was 
actually in power when this book was written. 

It is very strange to find no trace of William Pitt in 
our author's prophecy ; all the more so that his policy 



is entirely inspired by that of the Great Commoner. 
The entire beating down of France, the seizure of the 
Spanish possessions in the East and West Indies, the 
development of the American colonies, the perpetual 
increase of the fleet, are all Pitt's ideas. Yet among 
the ministers of George VI. there is certainly no one 
who in the least adumbrates the great statesman who 
had been thrust from power only a year before this book 
appeared. Was the author under the impression that 
George III. disliked his mighty subject to such an 
extent that it would be useless to urge a reconciliation ? 
Or was he content that Pitt's ideas should be carried 
out, even if Pitt himself should not be entrusted with 
their realization ? 

That the political England of 1900 is practically that 
of 1763, is most clearly visible in the budgets which the 
ministers of George VI. present to their Parliaments. 
Our author has no conception of the enormous increase 
of national wealth which was to swell our revenue, within 
a century, to eight or ten times that of his own day. 
Or rather, he foresaw a large development both of trade 
and of .manufactures, but forgot that such a movement 
would translate itself into figures. He is perpetually 
harping on the dangerous swelling of the national 
debt all through the nineteenth century, and more 
especially in the reign of George IV. (p. 3). But when 
we examine the " enormous burden " which must very 
soon drive the nation to " come to the spunge," we find 
that it amounted in 1900 to no more than 21 1,000,000. 


In 1763 it was standing at about 140,000,000, so that 
our author imagined that the addition of some 70,000,000 
more would be a fair estimate for the next century. 
What would he have said if he had been informed that 
in January, 1816, it would amount to over 900,000,000, 
and that the mere interest on it in that year would be 
more than double his total estimate for the annual 
revenue of the United Kingdom ? 

The very modest total to which the receipts of the 
exchequer were to amount in 1900 is 14,000,000 "a 
sum that would have astonished all the world, had we 
not been in possession of such a flourishing commerce." 
As a matter of fact, it seems probable that the real 
estimates for that year will amount to between eight 
and nine times our author's calculation. Looking into 
the details, the army, navy, and civil service, each cost, 
in 1899, just about eight times the sum indicated in the 
detailed budget set forth on page 33. On the other 
hand, the money required for the management of the 
national debt is less than six times the 4,250,000 which 
our author allows for it in 1900. He had estimated 
that financial stress would have cut down the 4 per 
cents of his own day to 2 per cents by the time of George 
VI. As a matter of fact, we have come down to 2| per 
cent., but by the peaceful method of Conversion, and 
not by the violent shock of the repudiation of half the 
covenanted interest. 

' Our author, like most eighteenth-century writers, was 
a great exponent of the all-importance of trade and 


colonization. The financial salvation of Great Britain, 
he tells us, is bound up with the development of our 
North American colonies : " The immense region of 
country which the English there possess was what most 
extended and forwarded the British manufactures." Of 
Australia and South Africa there is, naturally enough, 
no mention in the book. The first settlement in the 
former was a quarter of a century in the future (1788) ; 
in the latter, there was only an obscure Dutch colony 
at the Cape. The East India Company is still flourish- 
ing, but the limits of its territories are nowhere stated. 
We only know that in the reign of George VI. they 
comprised not only Indian possessions, but Batavia and 
the former Dutch settlements in Java. The company 
is found in 1920 aiding the King with a fleet as well as 
with a powerful land army (p. 86). But North America 
was to be the great Land of Promise : " By the year 1920 
there were 11,000,000 of souls in the British- American 
dominions : they were in possession of perhaps the finest 
country in the world, and yet had never made the least 
attempt to shake off the authority of Great-Britain " (p. 
100). It is a minor point to note that the United States 
have now about 70,000,000 inhabitants, and the dominion 
of Canada well over 5,000,000. The really interesting 
fact in our author's picture is to see that he had just 
conceived of the possibility of a revolt of the United 
Colonies, and then rejected it. George Grenville's unhappy 
legislation was still in the future, though quite close at 
hand ; it began, indeed, less than a twelvemonth after 


our pamphlet was printed. Other American grievances 
were already in existence, but our author gives his 
reasons for thinking that they would never grow 
dangerous. " The constitutions of the several divisions 
of this vast monarchy were admirably designed to keep 
the whole in continual dependence on the mother 
country. . . . The multiplicity of governments which 
prevailed over the whole country rendered the execution 
of such a scheme [combined rebellion] absolutely im- 
possible " (p. 100). Alas for paper guarantees ! It was, 
in all probability, well within our author's lifetime that 
the spectacle of an intercolonial Congress was to give 
his speculations the lie. The chances are that he 
survived to hear of Saratoga and Yorktown, and to see 
an envoy of the United States of North America walk- 
ing in the streets of London. He must have sighed to 
think of his own enthusiastic picture of ten British men- 
of-war on the stocks at once in Boston Harbour (p. 65), 
and of the militia of New Orleans co-operating with our 
red-coats in the capture of the city of Mexico (p. 86). 

The great development of British commerce and 
manufactures which our author foresaw was to be 
accomplished of course without the aid of steam. 
Three- deckers fight our naval battles, huge East- 
Indiamen bring us the wealth of Calcutta and Batavia. 
Internal communications are facilitated by splendidly 
kept high-roads and numberless canals, not by the 
locomotive or the steamer. Living in the heyday of 
canals (the great " Bridgewater " Canal started work in 


1761), our author looked on them as the great highways 
of the future. "Rivers that formerly were almost useless 
were now navigated by large barges, which increased the 
trade of innumerable towns, and raised in many places 
new ones. The canals which were cut joined rivers, and 
formed a communication between every part of the 
kingdom. Villages grew into towns, and towns became 
cities " (p. 99). 

But the growth of great towns, though it gratified the 
economical side of our author's mind, did not please the 
artistic side. Accordingly, we find that George VI., like 
the Reverend Robert Spalding, " did not like London." 
" Its prodigious size was its only boast : it contained few 
buildings that did honour to the nation. The meanness 
of his Majesty's palace disgusted him. In a word, he 
thought London a city finely calculated for trade, but 
not for the residence of the polite arts." Accordingly, 
he built a sort of Versailles in the Midlands, to which 
he removed the law courts, the Parliament, and all the 
public offices. Our author waxes enthusiastic over the 
beauties of the new city of Stanley, which was laid out 
by the royal architects on a regular and symmetrical 
plan. The facade of each street was carefully settled, 
and the erectors of houses were compelled to conform 
to the design. In 1763 we were in the full tide of 
classical architecture, and Stanley must be conceived 
as filled entirely with domes and pediments and peri- 
styles ; its cathedral " far exceeded St. Peter's Rome," 
its forty-three parish churches were no doubt in the style 


of St. George's, Hanover Square, its colleges on the 
lines of Queen's College, Oxford, its enormous palace 
modelled on that of a German resident. We fear that 
to the real denizen of the year 1900 the city would be 
a nightmare, with its monotonous thoroughfares and its 
public buildings all in one single style. The description 
of the great gardens running down to the Welland, and 
looking out on Rockingham Forest, sounds more 
promising, though we cannot but smile when we read 
of the landscape " in which the appearance of art was 
entirely banished." For our author's idea of " nature 
unadorned " included artificial mountains crowned with 
little temples and pinnacles, a prodigious quantity of 
masonry, and " many cascades tumbling down artificial 
rocks, till they lost themselves in meandering currents 
through the embrowning shades " (p. 96). 

From the fact that the imaginary city of Stanley is 
reared in Rutland, not far from Uppingham, and close 
by the banks of the Welland, I conclude that our author 
must have been a native, or at least a denizen, of that 
part of the Midlands. This fact may be of assistance 
in the identification of his personalty, which I have 
not been able to discover. Literary men interested 
in the county of Rutland can never have been very 

The reader will notice with interest, on pp. 37 and 
94, the account of the creation and endowment, by 
George VI., of Royal Academies not only of Arts and 
Architecture, but of Literature. Our author has been 


good enough to give us a list of the original members 
of these institutions, which is not without interest. 
Oddly enough, his leading poet bears the name of 
Reynolds, which in 1763 (one would have thought) 
must have been already associated with art rather than 
with literature. " That great man united the elegance 
of Mason with the genius of Shakespeare." His 
colleague Pine, " to the inventive imagination of Milton 
added the correctness and harmony of Pope." Third 
among the writers was Young, " whose comedies far 
exceeded those of the celebrated Symonds." We should 
gladly have welcomed a few screeds and excerpts from 
the works of these masters of the pen, but our author 
does not indulge us with a single quotation. It is to 
be feared that, if he had done so, we should have found 
that they were written in the highest classical style of 
the eighteenth century : the romantic revival was still in 
the future when "The Reign of George VI." was written. 
The only authors who are quoted in the book are 
historians Stephenson, who apparently wrote on 
Continental politics, and is cited for the foreign relations 
of Switzerland (p. 64), and Du Chanq, a French writer, 
who seems to have dealt with the military aspect of 
the great struggle of 1917-20. It must suffice us to 
know, in a general way, that the " Royal Academy 
of Polite Learning" "refined the English language, 
and promoted literature in all its branches. The prizes 
given every year for the best tragedies, comedies, and 
essays, at the same time that they raised a spirit of 


emulation, were a means of enriching the votaries of 

It remains to add a few words concerning the military 
operations which occupy so great a space in " The Reign 
of George VI." The reader will find that they are 
entirely modelled on the tactics of Frederick the Great, 
which have evidently been most carefully studied. The 
usual advance in two lines of infantry, with the cavalry 
massed on the wings the use of the oblique order and 
the regular turning of one of the adversary's flanks, are 
all copied from the great Hohenzollern. In his one 
disaster, his surprise by the French in front of Orleans, 
in May, 1919, George VI. does Frederick the honour 
of copying him, even in defeat ; for the battle seems 
modelled on that of Hochkirch. The marches of the 
English army are very carefully worked out, and can 
be easily verified on the map. That to relieve Vienna, 
in 1918, is a careful reproduction of Marlborough's 
march to Blenheim, which was the sole precedent 
that lay before our author for an operation extending 
over such a vast stretch of country. The movements 
about Lyons and Clermont, ending in the battle of 
Espalion (pp. 75-79), will all bear careful verification, 
both for the roads traversed, and for the time taken. 
But there can be no doubt that in some of the campaigns 
the limit of days allowed for long and complicated 
operations is too small. George VI. contrives to move 
with a rapidity that would have astonished Napoleon 
himself. Having, for example, won the battle of Espalion 


on June 23, 1920, it is quite impossible that he should 
have cleared the French out of Languedoc, Guienne, 
Gascony, Provence, and Dauphine, and occupied Paris 
by the 24th of July. Our author states that he met 
practically no opposition in subduing the southern 
provinces ; but as we are told that the King of France 
was waiting before him with an unbeaten army of some 
80,000 men during the latter part of these operations, 
it is certain that such incredible speed could not have 
been reached (p. 83). 

I regret that I have been able to make no plausible 
guess as to the identity of the author of this little book. 
It was " Printed for W. Niccoll, at the Paper-Mill, in St. 
Paul's Churchyard," late in 1763. That it achieved 
some popularity in its day is shown by the fact that an 
enterprising German publisher thought it worth while 
to have the pamphlet translated and reprinted at 
Leipzig as " Die Regierung Georg des Sechsten." I had 
hoped that the translator might have added a preface 
giving some information as to the author. But he has 
contented himself with making a very literal rendering 
of the English, without adding a single note or remark 
of his own. If any reader can put me on the track of a 
literary man of strong imperialistic proclivities, who 
flourished in 1763, and had a connection with the county 
of Rutland, and more especially the town of Uppingham, 
I should be much obliged for the information. 



June 20, 1899. 


A PREFACE, like a Master of the Ceremonies, intro- 
duces two Strangers to an interview, and upon occa- 
sions of this nature, the bookseller usually officiates 

as Sir Clement Cotterel 1 to the reader. If we 

were to go on with our similes, we should compare 
an author to a convict at the place of execution, for 
let him have talked never so much, he has still a last 
word to say to the public. 

With regard to the tendency of the following history, 
as it is taken up at a what's-to-come period, and begun 
at an sera that will not begin these hundred years, it 
may be necessary to say a few words, whether critical 
or explanatory, whimsical or elaborate, shall be entirely 
submitted to the determination of the reader. 

The kingdom of Great-Britain was divided into two 
powerful parties, as we are informed by our annals, 
when the great Doctor Swift, took it into his head to 
write the history of Captain Lemuel Gulliver. The 

1 [Master of the Ceremonies to George II. and George III., from 
1758 to 1774.] 


political tendency of that celebrated performance is too 
generally known to require any comment in this place. 
The Dean, with the greatest concern, had long seen 
the Distractions of the state, and knew that it would 
be utterly impossible in a direct chain of reasoning, to 
combat with the force of popular opinion, or to con- 
tend with those obstinate prejudices which in a course 
of ill-judged education are too often and too fatally 

Sensible of this ineffectuality, that great man set 
about an undertaking, which would produce all the 
consequences he desired, without seeming to labour for 
any, and fully expose the principles of faction, without 
appearing the least solicitous to detect them at all.. He 
wrote, he published, and succeeded, and the work is at 
this day one of the most masterly pieces of its kind in 
any language, and held in the highest estimation by 
the most sensible and judicious part of the kingdom. 

The modesty which is ever the companion of true 
merit, would by no means admit your author to think 
of a parallel between this history and the travels of 
Captain Gulliver. Even to say he does not, is a sort 
of presumption, as it is tacitly acknowledging the 
possibility of such a comparison. But the very same 
modesty induces him to hope, that in the course of the 
following sheets, the reader will not sit down to an 
entertainment utterly contemptible, for then it would 
be an unpardonable piece of ill-breeding to think of 
setting it before a guest. The generality of modern 


writers have a mighty trick of saying " to be sure 
they themselves are sensible the performance is trivial, 
poor, wants merit, and all that ; " but why, if they are 
sensible their productions are so very despicable, do 
they insolently think of offering them to the public ? 
Why do they think of printing these very poor, trivial, 
and contemptible performances ? Why why Because, 
because, they neither think them poor, trivial, nor con- 
temptible ; their very humility is nothing but an aggra- 
vation of their arrogance, for the greatest vanity a man 
was ever guilty of, was to say, he had no vanity at all. 

In the history of George the sixth, we find few or 
none of those episodes, or particular circumstances that 
might happen among the great men of his time ; the 
historian has confined himself to the actions of the 
Prince alone. And in the account of the exploits, he 
little more than names any principal Commander, 
directing his whole attention to the conduct of the 
King. He paints him resolute, wise, and magnani- 
mous at home, vigilant, intrepid, and fortunate abroad, 
successful against domestic factions, and victorious over 
foreign enemies, a promoter of arts and sciences, an 
encourager of religion and virtue, and in short, draws 
him a very great King, and a truly good man. We 
shall not offer so poor a compliment to the reader as 
to mention any personage of the present age of English 
growth, who deserves the character given to the Hero of 
the future ; but we shall very much pity his understand- 
ing, if he meets with any difficulty in finding him out. 


In the course of the following sheets, the reader's own 
reflection must frequently assist him in the elucidation of 
particular circumstances, for in performances of this 
nature, it is totally impossible to be always as clear as 
a person could wish. There are such things as an 
Attorney, and Solicitor General, a Court of King's 
Bench, and pains and penalties, it might be rather 
dangerous for the author to write with more perspicuity 
on some points, but there is no law hitherto established 
against thinking, so that while he is secure from the 
acquaintance of a Messenger, our author in any passage 
which may carry the appearance of obscure, gives the 
reader leave to think just what he pleases of the relation. 

The great contest that has long subsisted between 
two powerful factions, affords the fairest opportunity 
for a satyrical reader to exert himself, and to lash any 
error that may be found in the principles of either, even 
while he writes with a laudable view of reconciling 
both. Our historian, in the gloomy portrait which 
he draws of the nation, at the beginning of his work, 
aludes very strongly to a late dangerous crisis, when 
the kingdom was torn with party feuds and animosities, 
and when some of the greatest people risqued their own 
properties without any concern, to enjoy the malevolent 
satisfaction of injuring other people. The character 
of the future Duke of Bedford will easily lead us to 
think of a nobleman of the present times, who has 
headed an opposition to the government of his King ; 
and the parliamentry proceedings in the reign of George 


the sixth, may be considered as a well turned compli- 
ment to the legislature of George the third. 

In the perusal of the ensuing history, the author 
has dwelt with a particular satisfaction on the en- 
couragement given to men of genius, and the noble 
provisions which his Hero allowed for cultivating the 
politer arts and sciences. The Academy which he estab- 
lished for that purpose, endears the Monarch impercep- 
tibly to the reader of taste, and was not injudiciously 
introduced to enhance the character of George, and to 
inspire an emulation of the most generous kind in the 
bosom of his predecessors. Learning indeed, not- 
withstanding the eulogium which has been paid to 
some great names, has not found a sufficient encourage- 
ment hitherto in England ; and it is rather surprising, 
that every nation in Europe should have academies for 
promoting it but our own. 

Not to take up the reader's time, however, with 
reflections, which in the perusal of the following sheets 
must naturally occur to himself, it will be only necessary 
to observe further, that the author, by making his Hero 
conquer all France, and establishing him in the possesion 
of ^hat kingdom, seems to hint that our late treaty of 
peace was not altogether so advantageous as ministerial 
writers would have us think it ; and that the moderation 
which we showed on that occasion, was rather a little 
ill-timed. Upon the whole, it is presumed, that the 
history of George the sixth will merit the approbation 
of the candid ; and that the reader of sense, will 


himself comment upon passages that would not be 
so safe for our author to explain, and make proper 
allowances, from the nature of the subject, for any seem- 
ing heaviness of style which accidentally arises in the 




A.D. I66O-I9OO. 

ALTHOUGH the period in our history, of which these 
sheets contain an account, is one of the most singular 
and remarkable, and more detached from the general 
arrangement of our annals than perhaps any other 
reign; yet it is necessary to sketch the outlines of 
the preceding times, that the reader may comprehend 
the whole picture at once in his imagination, without the 
pain of continued recollection. 

The splendor of the English nation ought to take 
its date from the civil wars in the seventeenth century, 
which at the same time that they ruined individuals, 
and threw the kingdom into a temporary state of con- 
fusion, laid the foundation for that immense fabric which 
has since been erected. It has been justly remarked, 
that nations display their internal resources more, and 
produce great men more abundantly after a civil war, 
than at any other period ; the observation is drawn 



from history, and needs no philosophical enquiries to 
establish it. But most certainly the English nation 
made those prodigious acquisitions of trade, within half 
a century after the death of Cromwell, that prepared 
the way for still greater increase. During the supine 
reigns of Charles II. and James II. we were gaining on 
our neighbours. 

The Revolution threw us into a new scene of action, 
and the wars we carried on on the continent, at the 
same time that they secured the independency of 
Europe, opened new channels for our trade to flow in : 
but the most remarkable event of King William's reign 
was the beginning of a public debt, which has since 
been attended with such wonderful consequences. 

The reign of Queen Anne was a period in which the 
English arms made a respectable figure in Europe 
during the continuance of the war, and her councils 
like those of a succeeding reign, a very pitiful one at 
the end ; * our trade still increased, and with it, our 
public debt. The greatest part of the reigns of the 
two first Georges contained little remarkable. In read- 
ing their histories we meet with none of those actions 
that raise and elevate the soul, and make us wonder at 
the power that executed them. The period of our 
history that is graced with the name of George III. is 
more splendid ; it forms a remarkable aera in the annals 
of Europe ; not from the number of great geniuses that 
adorned his court, but from the multitude of virtues 

1 [An allusion, of course, to the great sacrifices made by Lord 
Bute at the Peace of Paris in Feb. 1863, just before the publi- 
cation of this pamphlet.] 


which constituted the character of the sovereign of a 
happy people. Yet even so great an assemblage of 
excellencies was not attended with a-fortunate influence 
over the manners of his court ; the great men of those 
days served but as a foil to set off the lustre of royal 
virtues. Indeed, few endeavoured to arrive at that 
summit of virtue which they considered impossible to 
attain, and therefore they prudently beheld the merit 
without any wish of imitation. 

In the reign of George IV. (1810-1848) were many 
remarkable events, but the most material occurrence, 
which continued throughout that period, was the amaz- 
ing increase of the National Debt. 

George V. was a wise and virtuous prince, but the 
kingdom suffered from the want of capacity in his 
ministers, and felt a very severe shock in the conquest 
of Holland. 1 He came to the crown in one of the most 
critical moments that it is possible one Prince can 
succeed another ; his kingdom was in the greatest 
confusion, occasioned by a long and unfortunate war 
with Russia. In vain had his predecessors endea- 
voured at an immense expense to prevent the fatal 
aggrandizement of that empire ; in vain had the 
parliament granted every necessary supply to prevent 
the Northern Kingdoms from being swallowed into one 
prodigious monarchy ; every effort which the fifth 
grand alliance Europe had seen, could make, was in- 
effectual. Sweden and Denmark, notwithstanding their 
being so powerfully assisted, were unable to defend 
themselves ; every thing submitted to the rapidity of 
1 [By the French, in or about 1850.] 


Peter's arms, and the first maritime power in the 
world, who had so long possessed the dominion of the 
sea, saw its fleets beaten, and its coasts insulted. The 
ministry was unsettled, and the violent agitation of the 
whole kingdom, owing to the sad state of the public 
funds, conspired to form one of those critical situations 
which require great judgement and abilities in the 
Prince, and a unanimous concurrence of his parliament, 
to guide the helm with success. 

The King in part effected it ; but during his long 
reign, the nation was far from being in a flourishing 
situation, and the dismal prospect of national bank- 
ruptcy, which the most penetrating politicians clearly 
foresaw must soon come to pass, cast a general damp 
on the spirits of the people. In the end of the nine- 
teenth century a certain languor in the administration 
foretold some terrible crisis was at hand. In the 
midst of this general despondency the King died, and 
was succeeded by George VI. the history of whose reign 
is the subject of the following sheets ; a period the most 
remarkable, and abounding in the most astonishing 
events, that have ever been recorded in modern history. 



First acts of this Prince's reign. Ministerial changes. 
National Debt. State of Europe. 

THE very first acts of this Prince's reign l were such as 
caught the attention of all Europe ; they indicated not 
only a soaring genius, but a judgement far beyond his 
years. The nation had formed the most ardent hopes 
of their young Sovereign ; in his education and very 
youth he had given signs of what was one day to be 
expected of him ; and all ranks of people turned their 
weary eyes on him, as their pilot through that sea of 
troubles which it was too evident was rising to over- 
whelm them. The King, in all his actions, showed him- 
self worthy of their confidence. His father's ministry 
was composed of a set of men, who, though they did not 
want abilities, were not such as he chose to employ ; but 
his inclinations in this point could not be fully indulged, 
from several circumstances. The Duke of Bedford, 
Lord High Treasurer, had such prodigious interest in 
the parliament, owing more to his immense riches than 
his personal merit, that his removal would have been 
1 He ascended the throne the i6th of February, 1900. 


dangerous, so he continued him in his post till a more 
favourable opportunity should offer itself. The Duke 
of Northumberland was removed from being president 
of the council, and was succeeded by the Earl of Surrey. 
The Duke of Marlborough was made Secretary of State 
for the Southern department, and the Marquis of Kildare 
for the Northern ; l Lord Sands and Mr. Stevens, retiring 
with pensions. The Duke of Suffolk, Lord Privy-Seal, 
in the room of the Duke of St. Albans, and the Duke 
of Grafton first Lord of the Admiralty, which then 
happened to be vacant by the death of the Duke of 
Athol. These were the principal alterations which were 
made in great offices of state.' 2 

But the above personages were not possessed of 
equal authority, or entrusted with the same confidence 
by the king. It was at first foreseen that the principal 
share of power would rest in the Duke of Suffolk, who 
possessed his Majesty's ear more than any of his other 
servants, and was designed to succeed the Duke of 
Bedford as soon as he could be removed with safety. 
This young nobleman was of a disposition congenial 
with his Sovereign's : he had improved his mind by 
reading the most celebrated authors, and possessed that 

1 '[In the Eighteenth Century the two Secretaries of State bore 
these names, and were supposed to divide the cognizance of foreign 
affairs between them. The Northern Secretary, in addition to 
superintending the affairs of Northern Europe, was also supposed 
to keep an eye on Ireland. This clumsy arrangement was 
abolished in 1782, when Home and Foreign Secretaries were 

2 These changes took place in February and the beginning of 
March, 1900. 


penetrating genius, which easily comprehends, and 
fully attains, the objects of its study. He had travelled 
through the principal courts of Europe, and understood 
their different interests and connections, with abundance 
of ease and perspicuity. He possessed the confidence 
and friendship of the King, who loved him ; but his 
promotion gave offence to many, and caused great envy, 
as he was originally of a mean family, 1 and, besides, 
was sometimes apt to behave rather haughtily to his 

The ceremony of the late King's burial was no sooner 
over, and the ministry settled for the present, than writs 
were issued for the meeting of a new parliament ; which 
assembled 2 with the highest opinion of their new 
Sovereign deeply impressed on their minds, and a 
unanimity of design to be expeditious in every public 
business that should come under their consideration. It 
would be tedious to the reader, and is below the dignity 
of history, to enter minutely into the debates of the two 
houses, and to describe the numberless little circum- 
stances that attend the inferior motions of the legis- 
lature ; these matters are proper for the annals of the 
times ; but it is our business to exhibit only those out- 
lines, and stronger strokes of colouring, that characterise 
the manners of the age, and give the boldest ideas of 
the history of the period. 

1 [This Dukedom of Suffolk must therefore be- supposed to be a 
new creation of the reign of George V., and not connected with the 
Earldom of the same name held by the Howards in the eighteenth 
century. In writing of a duke of Suffolk of mean family our 
author may have been remembering Michael de la Pole.] 

2 1 3th of April, 1900. 


The first affair of consequence that came before them 
was the Civil List. There was a debt contracted on it of 
above five hundred thousand pounds, this was paid off ; 
and with a liberality boundless, and, perhaps, in its con- 
sequences, dangerous, they augmented that branch of 
the grants by half a million yearly ; so that the Civil List 
was now two millions a year : a prodigious sum ! in- 
creased by degrees for near four centuries. But what 
made this act of generosity imprudent to the highest 
degree, was their settling it for life ; it is true, their 
opinion of their new Sovereign was not groundless, but 
dangerous precedents ought never to be established. 
Nothing was of greater importance than their debates 
on the public debt : the amount of it was astonishing ; 
although the fatal year thirty-four 1 had spunged eighty 
millions of it, it was now above two hundred and ten 
millions. The interest of this enormous sum alone 
amounted to eight millions five hundred thousand 
pounds ; and as the principal was every year increasing 
to pay off the interest, it was evident that it must very 
soon come to a spunge. 2 To prevent the dreadful con- 
sequences such an event must be attended with, the 
parliament laid a tax of ten per cent on stock, for one 
year : but this was only a temporary expedient, and 
ruined numbers whose property in the public funds was 
fluctuating. They voted five hundred thousand pounds 
to be expended in repairing the navy and building new 

1 1834- 

2 [The actual amount of the National Debt in 1899 is 
^638,200,000, and the interest on it, with the cost of management 
added, is about ,25,000,000.] 


ships a service most necessary and advantageous, for 
the Russian fleet threatened that of Britain with utter 
destruction in case of a new war. This it was feared 
was not far off; for the truce which had been signed 
was almost expired, without having as yet produced its 
desired effect, a lasting peace. The grants on the whole 
amounted to fourteen millions, 1 a sum which would have 
astonished all the world had we not been in possession 
of such a flourishing commerce ; but it was a time of 
peace, and had we been engaged in an expensive war, 
we could have added very little to our income. But it 
will be necessary to present the reader with a view of 
the state of Europe at the time this Monarch came to 
the crown. 

The nations that formed what we call the North 
having been overturned by the immense power of the 
Russians, made one vast monarchy, which compre- 
hended Moscovy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, and 
Lithuania, now called the empire of Russia. Peter 
the IVth was the Monarch that swayed the imperial 
sceptre ; a Prince whose martial feats were hardly ever 
exceeded, if we consider his barbarous courage and 
successful temerity ; the acquisitions he had made 
were the effects of mere personal courage in himself, 
that excited an ardour in his troops, and not the 
consequence of policy or design ; he was an indifferent 
statesman, and a savage man. No sooner were his 
own and his predecessors' arms successful in the attacks 
which they made on their neighbours, than he turned 

1 [The actual sum voted for 1899 is ^112,900,000, just eight 
times the amount of our author's estimate.] 


all his efforts on raising a maritime power superior to 
that of Britain : for above eleven years all the ports of 
the Baltic were filled with preparations, and in the year 
1897 Peter saw himself in possession of a naval force 
of two hundred men-of-war of the line, besides an 
innumerable number of frigates and smaller vessels. 
The greater part of this prodigious fleet was manned ; 
the amazing trade of his extensive dominions produced 
him seamen in abundance ; in a word, he was superior 
to England by sea, and the British coasts were open to 
his invasions, when a truce was patched up between the 
two nations. 

The marriage which had transferred the dominions of 
the house of Austria to that of Prussia, and with them 
the imperial title, seemed to have extinguished that 
generous bravery, and political reputation which the 
kings of Prussia had enjoyed for so many centuries. 
The Emperor Frederic IX. was in every respect a weak- 
Prince ; he was governed by his Queen ; and she by the 
intriguing Count Buckeburg, 1 Prime Minister, a man of 
abilities, but who was suspected of holding a corre- 
spondence with his master's enemies. The Prince of 
Baden had gained great reputation in the last war with 
France, and by his victories had enabled Frederic to 
conclude an advantageous peace with that kingdom ; 
but being Buckeburg's enemy had lately been dis- 
graced, and was entered into the English service, the 
late King receiving him with many marks of satis- 

1 [Presumably a member of the princely house of Lippe-Bucke- 
burg ;Lippe-Schaumburg) still existing.] 


Charles the Xth sat this time on the throne of 
France : he had the reputation of being a most cunning 
and politic prince ; was brave, and had had some success 
at the head of his army against the Imperialists. He 
had just entered into a close alliance with Russia : had 
the phantom of a balance of power been the foible of 
these days, such an alliance would have alarmed all 
Europe ; but it had no other effect than making the 
King of Great Britain very jealous of his neighbour. 
Spain was in profound peace, excepting a temporary 
disturbance, which arose from a third rebellion of the 
Portuguese, 1 but it was quelled with very little trouble ; 
and the conquered nation saw not the least hopes of 
regaining their independence. 

The peace of Italy was almost at an end : the prepa- 
rations that were making by the two Kings of Venice 
and Sicily prognosticated the renewal of their quarrel. 
The patrimony of St. Peter, which had so long been 
wrested from the church, was again likely to be the 
scene of devastation. It was supposed that Venice 
would have the assistance of France, who has always 
found her account in intermeddling with the affairs of 
Italy. 2 Such was the situation of affairs in Europe at 

the time George VI. came to the crown. 

1 [We are, unfortunately, not given any date for this conquest of 
Portugal by Spain, somewhere in the early nineteenth century.] 

2 [The Kingdom of Venice must have been very small compared 
'with that of the Two Sicilies, as we find on p. 64 that Milan was 
in the hands of the latter. Presumably the Kingdom of Venice 
only comprised the dominions of the old Venetian republic.] 


War with Russia. Naval defeat off the Dutch Coast. Intrepidity 
of the King. Transactions in Parliament. Invasion. Battle 
of Wetherby. Naval engagement. 

As there were but a few months of the truce with 
Russia unexpired, the King hastened the preparations 
for war with redoubled vigour. He had many obstacles 
to overcome, but the greatest was the want of money ; 
the National Debt was a bottomless gulf that swallowed 
up every thing. The navy was much behind hand in 
arrears, and many little mutinies had been raised by the 
sailors for the want of their pay, but at last, after a 
thousand difficulties a formidable fleet was fitted out 
at the ports of Harwich, Hull, and Edinburgh ; it con- 
sisted of fifty-five sail of the line, and two and twenty 
frigates. The Russians were later in their preparations ; 
so that when the truce was expired, which was the 8th 
of September, their fleet was not ready to sail. The 
command of the British squadron was given to the 
Duke of Grafton, the First Lord of the Admiralty : 
Admiral Philips and Sir Charles Montague commanded 
the rear and van divisions under him. It is impossible 
to express the consternation of all ranks of people on 


the sailing of this fleet ; the fate of the war depended 
not only on its success in the action, but on its being 
able to keep the enemy within the Sound. Thirty 
thousand Russians were embarked on board their 
squadron, which consisted of seventy sail of the line, 
besides frigates and a large fleet of transports, as they 
designed to attempt an invasion : their land-forces were 
commanded by the Marshal Schmettau, and the fleet 
by the Prince of PhiligrofF. Their superiority was for- 
midable, not only in number of ships, but they were in 
general larger than the English ; and their sailors had 
former successes imprinted on their minds. The Duke 
of Grafton having collected the British squadrons set 
sail with a fair wind for the Baltic, but the third day he 
was blown by a storm on the coast of Holland ; unfor- 
tunately the enemy's fleet was out of the Sound before 
the wind changed, and the same storm brought them in 
sight of the British fleet. It blew very hard when the 
engagement began, 1 which was about four in the after- 
noon, with great fury. The Duke and the Prince both 
exerted themselves with great vigour, and fought with 
the most heroic bravery. The Royal George of 100 
guns, the English Admiral's ship, was disabled by three 
Russian men of war, each of 80 guns. About six the 
Duke shifted his flag to the Blenheim, and in half an 
hour after the Royal George sunk. The Russian 
Admiral shifted his flag three times before the morning ; 
for the battle lasted all night with the utmost fury. Sir 
Charles Montague was killed in the beginning of the 
engagement ; and at last the Duke himself was wounded, 
1 November 3, 1900. 


and carried under deck ; Philips continued the action 
with the greatest bravery and conduct, and had it 
pleased God that the wind had been less violent, he 
would, in all probability, have been the conqueror ; but 
the storm increasing, the two fleets were obliged to 
separate. The Russians' loss was very considerable, their 
Vice Admiral was killed, they had three ships taken, one 
sunk, and two blown up ; with about 7000 men killed 
and wounded. The loss of the English was much less 
in number, but they had several ships quite disabled. 

The day after this fatal engagement the British fleet 
kept in sight of the Russians, but without having it 
in their power to attack them ; they were too much 
weakened by their loss ; and the enemy making some 
motions which indicated a design to renew the engage- 
ment, Philips thought it most for the King's service to 
retire into port and refit. 

The King was at the council when the news of the 
action was brought him ; he was undismayed, and 
replied, " The Lord's will be done ; " but it was a clap 
of thunder to every mortal besides. It was every 
moment expected that the Russian General would make 
a descent ; the whole nation was in the utmost confusion ; 
a sudden run upon the Bank was near occasioning a 
stop, and the stocks, which bore four per cent, fell down 
to thirty-five. In this critical moment all eyes were 
turned on the King, as the only pilot in so terrible a 
storm. It was impossible to be guided by a better ; 
and had not Britain possessed a Sovereign of such 
singular intrepidity and prudence, she would have seen 
her last days. His Majesty, when he found the turn 


affairs were likely to take, prudently ventured to send 
an order to the Bank to stop payment till the kingdom 
was more secure, and, at the same time, issued out a 
proclamation, assuring his subjects that this was but 
a temporary measure, till the affairs of the nation would 
permit of more regularity. He immediately assembled 
the Parliament by proclamation, and went himself to 
the Admiralty, where he sat three hours dictating orders; 
dispatches were sent to every port in England, to hasten 
the equipment of a new fleet ; troops were marching 
from all parts to the capital ; in short, this young 
Monarch was, at this critical moment, the very life and 
soul of the state ; he managed every thing himself, and 
almost without assistance ; for his ministry and the 
council were so divided in their opinions and debates, 
that he put very little faith in any of them. In the 
midst of this scene of confusion, advice was brought, 
that the Russians, to the amount of 25,000 men, had 
landed on the coast of Durham, and their fleet soon 
after disappeared, it was supposed, in order to convey 
a second embarkation. 

The affairs of Britain were now arrived at a most 
dangerous crisis, more terrible in appearance than any 
she had ever seen ; and many circumstances combined 
to render her state really dreadful. The army was 
weak and ill paid, the formidable naval power of the 
Russians having obliged the administration to turn all 
their efforts towards the fleet. The general despondence 
which prevailed throughout the nation, upon account 
of the Debt, increased the shades of this sad picture. 
The riches of individuals were now found to be of but 


little avail to the good of the state, and while we en- 
joyed a more extensive trade than ever, the nation was 
upon the brink of ruin. The Russians threw all their 
force into their royal navy, so that our commerce had 
suffered very little from privateers. 

The Parliament being assembled in the greatest 
haste and confusion, the king went to the house, and, 
in a sensible and nervous speech, laid before them the 
dangerous situation of the nation, and painted to them, 
in the strongest colours, the absolute necessity for 
vigorous measures to preserve them from their impending 
ruin. He informed them the enemy was landed, and 
on the march to York ; that the only defence they had 
now to trust to was the army, which was itself weak, and 
discontented for want of pay ; that the late misfortune 
at sea must be speedily repaired. In short, that the 
urgency of the times required every moment to be 
made use of. He told them that money was wanted 
for a varity of uses, and that instantly that the time 
was too short to raise it, and their credit too weak to 
borrow it that, as circumstances were thus situated, 
he saw no expedient but their enabling him to make 
use of the money in the hands of the Bank-trustees, 
which was designed for the interest of the public debt, 
for more public and immediate necessities. 

George made little doubt but that the parliament 
would readily come into any measures, at so critical a 
juncture, for the good of their country ; but in this he 
was fatally mistaken. Peter had conveyed immense 
sums into England, and had most politically distributed 
them to the most advantageous purposes ; he had 


secured a large party, and this with the influence of 
the Duke of Bedford (for that nobleman was against 
the court in every debate, owing to his being debarred 
of that share of power usually given to a Lord High- 
Treasurer), obstructed every measure proposed for 
coming to some speedy resolutions. At last, after the 
greatest heats, and the warmest debates ever known, 
it was determined to reject the King's proposal, and 
address him to remove from his councils and service 
the Duke of Suffolk, who they apprehended was the 
adviser of those measures. 

The King's indignation at receiving this address is 
not to be expressed. He had expected the most hearty 
concurrence in every national measure he could have 
proposed ; but when he found how much he was mis- 
taken, he broke out into a violent exclamation against 
his enemies in the parliament, and flew in a violent 
passion to the House. He turned the Speaker out of the 
chair, and, seating himself in it, " I flattered myself," 
said he, " that a British parliament would have acted on 
British principles ; but, to your great dishonour, I find 
myself mistaken. A powerful enemy is landed, and on 
the march : that time which you would waste in sense- 
less disputes, is too precious for me to follow so pernicious 
an example : I shall place myself at the head of my 
troops, and act for the honour and good of my country : 
but let those traitors, that dare form machinations against 
the public peace, dread the indignation of an injured 
and enraged Sovereign." He had no sooner thundered 
out these words than he left the House, with very visible 
marks of anger. 



As none knew the King's intentions, all were terrified ; 
those who had so violently opposed his former pro- 
posal, dreaded his discovering their guilt, and were dis- 
mayed ; they now offered to address his Majesty to 
take the state under his protection. This resolution was 
quickly agreed to ; but before it could be concluded 
the House was alarmed with a violent mob, who had 
broke into the anti-chambers, and threatened destruction 
to every man who should oppose the King's will. Terror 
now sat in every countenance. Nothing less than im- 
mediate ruin was the object of every one's fears. With- 
out much altercation, however, they hastily drew up an 
act, by which the King was enabled to apply all the 
money in the hands of the Bank Trustees to public 
service, in such manner as he thought most expedient. 1 

This was a dreadful stroke to the public credit ; stocks 
sunk almost to nothing, and the consequences were an 
immediate stop in the payment of the public interest. 
However, in violent disorders, violent remedies are 
necessary. The King no sooner possessed this money, 
which amounted to some millions, than he paid off all 
the arrears of the army, and gave orders for the same 
in the navy. Nothing could exceed the rapidity of his 
measures. His troops were rendezvoused at Bucking- 
ham ; and in a few days he put himself at the head 
of them. The whole army, when collected, amounted 
to near thirty thousand men, five thousand of which 
were horse. 

In the mean time, the enemy under Count Schmettau 
had made little or no progress, considering the time they 
1 i st of December, 1900. 


had been landed. Had they marched immediately for 
London the moment they were debarked, George would 
have had much less time to collect his forces ; but 
Schmettau having taken Durham by storm, he most 
imprudently gave his troops three days to plunder ; this 
conduct was madness itself. The Russians broke into 
all the houses, and were guilty of every species of excess. 
Their cruelties were unheard of and unparalleled ; the 
most tender age was no defence against these merciless 
monsters ; old men, women, and children were butchered 
in cold blood, in the most shocking manner. It would 
make humanity recoil to relate their horrid barbarities ; 
but their soldiers were soon intoxicated with liquor and 
cruelty, and all discipline and order were at an end. 

The King being informed of the condition of the 
enemy, hastened his marches with all the expedition 
that was possible. He reached Lincoln in five days ; 
and there understood that Schmettau, on the advice 
of his approach, had drawn out his men from Durham, 
though not without great difficulty, and was on the march 
to York. His Majesty pushed on to meet him before 
he could reach that city ; but as it was too strong to 
be taken by surprise, Schmettau encamped between 
York and Wetherby, 1 and prepared to fight the King, 
who was within five miles of him. There were several 
circumstances that induced George to determine on 
hazarding an action immediately : he expected soon 
to hear of another army of Russians landing ; and he 
thought that avoiding a battle would damp the spirits 
of his soldiers ; add to this, the barbarous ravages of 
1 [*>. some eight miles due west of York;] 


the savage enemy called aloud on his humanity to put 
a stop to the miseries of his suffering subjects. He 
accordingly drew near to the enemy, and reconnoitred 
their situation, and prepared to attack them the next 
day, the 23rd of December. 

Schmettau drew up his army on the side of a hill, with 
a rivulet in his front, a wood on each wing, and a village 
in his rear, which he had slightly fortified, and threw 
some battalions into the houses. All the King's 
motions seemed to indicate a design of attacking him in 
his front, and he had therefore raised several batteries 
that commanded the passage of the rivulet : his Majesty, 
however, finding that all the attention of the enemy was 
carried to their front, determined to make only a feint 
there, and attack them in their rear. Accordingly, 
about three o'clock in the morning, he gave General 
Sommers the command of ten thousand men, with 
orders to remain in the field, ready for action at a 
moment's warning, and as soon as he heard a signal 
they agreed on, to pass the rivulet, and make an attack 
on the enemy's front, while the King himself would pass 
the river higher up and fall on their rear. 

This scheme had all the success that could have been 
wished for. General Sommers had no sooner made his 
attack than Schmettau gave into the snare : he con- 
cluded immediately that the whole English army was at 
his front, and, placing himself at the head of his first 
line, which included the choice of his army, he repulsed 
the English, but by the unparalleled bravery of the British 
troops was obliged to give way himself in his turn. Just 
at that critical moment the King made his attack on his 


rear, with a fury that at once threw the Russians into 
confusion ; and Schmettau, finding himself between two 
fires, would have made his retreat had it been in his 
power : he made every effort to recover his oversight, 
and thrice rallied and led his troops to the charge ; but 
the unconquerable fury of the King's attacks overcame 
every thing ; never man performed greater feats of 
personal valour; he had three horses killed under him, 
and as he was going to mount a fourth was near being 
shot by a Russian grenadier, but his carbine missing fire 
the King shot him dead. What concluded the day was 
Schmettau's being killed by a cannon ball : his death 
dispirited his men, and they soon gave way ; the 
situation of the ground would permit but a few to 
escape, and those in small bodies through the woods. 
About twelve o'clock the battle was over. Ten thousand 
Russians were killed and wounded, and seven thousand 
made prisoners. The loss of the English was not incon- 
siderable ; it amounted to about three thousand killed 
and wounded. The Dukes of Rutland and Newcastle, 
the Earl of Winchelsea, and Generals Howard, Chales, 
Lord, and French, were killed, besides which many 
officers of distinction were wounded. 

This victory raised the spirits of the people ; and it 
was particularly pleasing to them, as their young and 
next to adored Monarch gained it. The shouts of the 
army were equal to the applauses of the people ; and 
where a Prince had given such uncommon instances of 
prudence as well as bravery, it was impossible but that 
he should be universally beloved. 

The King had discovered a disposition which no 


dangers could intimidate or difficulties depress. He had 
no sooner fought the Russian army, than he was in- 
formed a fresh fleet, more powerful than their former, 
was on the coast of Suffolk. This news, which cast a 
fresh alarm on the minds of the people, only quickened 
the rapidity of the King's motions. The English fleet 
was collected in the Thames and Medway, and by means 
of the greatest expedition, was ready to sail, but waited 
for a fair wind. It consisted of sixty-four sail of the 
line and thirty-two frigates ; George was no sooner in- 
formed of the enemy than he determined to command 
his fleet himself. He rode with all expedition to 
Chatham, and took the command from the Duke of 
Grafton, who was recovered of his late wounds, but his 
Grace continued in the ship with his Majesty to give 
him his advice. The Britannia, on board of which was 
the King, was, without exception, the finest ship in the 
world ; she carried 120 brass guns, and, in the opinion 
of the best judges, was so well built and manned, that 
no single ship could live near her. Nothing could 
exceed the joy of the sailors at having their young 
victorious Sovereign at their head ; they expressed the 
greatest impatience to attack the enemy ; and the wind 
fortunately shifting, in two days gave them their 

The Russian fleet consisted of eighty-nine sail of the 
line besides frigates, and a fleet of transports which it 
was supposed might contain about ten thousand soldiers. 
About eight in the morning : the battle begun ; the 
enemy's Admiral, Steinhold, in a ship of 80 guns, and 
1 Jan. 10, 1901. 


another of 70 bore down on the Britannia ; the King 
met them, and singly engaged them. At one broadside 
the Russian Admiral was sunk to the bottom, a 
dreadful stroke, which threw their fleet into disorder. 
The other 70 gun-ship sheered off in a few minutes, and 
the Britannia was left without an enemy. The 
Marlborough was engaged with two Russian ships, who 
were too strong for her, but the King pouring a broad- 
side into one of them, immediately turned the supe- 
riority in favour of the Marlborough : by eleven o'clock 
the Russian fleet sheered off, and his Majesty chaced. 
Nine of their line of battle ships were taken, three sunk, 
and two burnt ; forty transports were also taken, and 
several sunk. Thus did this young and gallant 
Monarch, with all the courage, conduct, and skill of an 
experienced Admiral, defeat the enemy's fleet, which , 
was so much superior to his own. This second victory 
raised the fame of the King to the highest pitch, changed 
the face of affairs, and spread a general joy through the 
breasts of all his subjects. 


A.D. I9OI-I902. 

Military and Naval preparations of the King. War with France. 
Invasion of Flanders. Battle of Winox. Rapid successes. 
The Russians defeated at sea. Peace of Beauvais. 

Two such glorious victories seated George with security 
on the throne. But his success did not occasion the 
least neglect in his military preparations ; he was now 
superior to the enemy at sea, and was determined, at all 
events, to preserve his superiority. Ten sail were fitting 
out with all expedition at Milford Haven, and other 
squadrons were getting ready at Portsmouth, Plymouth, 
Chatham, Hull, and Lynn. The King had particular 
reasons for not suffering his preparations to relax. The 
King of France was at this time busied in fitting out a 
large fleet, and all the ports of that kingdom, from 
Amsterdam to Bayonne, resounded with naval arma- 
ments. George looked on them with a very jealous 
eye ; the Court of Versailles, indeed, gave out that they 
were intended against the Emperor of Morocco, who 
had lately insulted a French Ambassador ; but it was 
evident that preparations so very great indicated some 
further design in view : however, a trifling accident soon 
explained the views of the French King. 


An English privateer in the Channel having attacked 
another carrying Russian colours, and disabled her, she 
hung out French colours. It seems a merchant at 
Rotterdam had fitted her out to cruise upon the 
English, and gave the Captain orders, if he met 
with an enemy too strong for him, to show French 
colours. This affair, in which the French were evidently 
aggressors, was made a pretence for a quarrel ; the 
French Ambassador at London demanded satisfaction 
for the damage done the French ship ; the King 
returned a most spirited answer : and in short, after 
many memorials and replies, the King of France 
declared war against Great Britain, and was answered 
by his Britannic Majesty. 1 Charles, jealous of the 
British power, had entered into an offensive and de- 
fensive treaty with Peter, and had agreed to receive 
the Russian ships into the ports of France ; and by 
combining their respective fleets, to overpower the 
naval force of George at once. 

Fortunately for the King, Peter was dilatory in his 
preparations ; the British fleet, to the amount of ninety 
sail of the line, was ready for action, and saw no enemy 
that could look it in the face. But the King was 
determined to lose no time ; collecting a large fleet of 
transports, he embarked twenty thousand men on board 
them, and resolved to form an invasion of France. He 
gave out that he designed to attack Brest ; and to 
deceive the enemy the better, sent vessels to sound the 
depth of water on several parts of the coasts of Britany. 
The enemy marched down troops from all parts of 
1 May 6th, 1901. 


France to defend themselves where they thought the 
descent was intended ; but the King's plan was well 
laid, and unsuspected by the Court of Versailles. In- 
stead of steering to the coast of Britany he directed his 
course to that of Flanders, and, without the least 
opposition, landed his whole army on the beach of 

He immediately published and dispersed a memorial 
to the Dutch, exhorting them to take this favourable 
opportunity of regaining their liberty, promising to do 
everything for them that could be any way conducive 
to so salutary an end. But their spirits were too much 
depressed, and they were kept too much in awe by the 
garrisons that were in their several fortresses to listen to 
a deliverer. George marched towards Bruges, which capi- 
tulated without the firing of a gun. Ostend, Ypres, and 
Newport cost him some days ; but his progress was so 
rapid, before the French had an army to oppose him, 
that his difficulty in these conquests was not very great. 
The Marshal Duke de Vivionne at last appeared near 
Dunkirk, after a forced march, at the head of forty 
thousand men. The King was no sooner informed of 
his approach than he determined to fight him directly ; 
delays to him were dangerous ; whereas, the enemy 
would every day increase in strength. Vivionne was 
encamped at Winox, and entrenching himself, waited 
for reinforcements ; but George, having sent spies to 
reconnoitre his situation, found that his piquets were 
placed in a very negligent manner, and that it would be 
no difficult circumstance to surprise him in the night. 
In pursuance of this opinion, about one in the 


morning, of the loth of September, at the head of ten 
regiments, forming the first line of his army, he attacked 
the enemy's entrenchments. The onset was no sooner 
made than they were forced ; the French soldiers ran 
naked to their arms ; several of their Generals did all in 
their power to rally them, but in vain. The Duke de 
Vivionne had his head shot off by a cannon-ball in the 
beginning of the attack, and before daylight their army 
was defeated and totally dispersed. The enemy being 
pursued, and great numbers made prisoners, the King 
presented himself before Dunkirk, and the cowardly 
Governor gave up the town, to his astonishment, without 
attempting any thing for its defence. Calais opened its 
gates to the conqueror, and St. Omer surrendered after 
a week's siege. 

These rapid successes terrified the court of Charles ; 
they were surprised at the boldness of George's attempt, 
to make a regular attack on so powerful a monarchy as 
that of France, with such a handful of men. But it was 
a maxim with the King to despise numerous armies : 
forty thousand men, he often said, under a good General, 
were a match for any number ; and with some favour- 
able circumstances even twenty-five or thirty thousand. 
Charles, to stop the progress of his Britannic Majesty, 
placed the Duke of Ventadour at the head of a pro- 
digious army (collected from all parts of France) of near 
one hundred thousand men ; a force, if well managed, 
by being divided into two or three armies, strong enough 
to overwhelm George at once. But numerous as this 
body of troops were, they came only to be spectators of 
the success of the King of England. Without a single 


blow his Majesty made himself master of Boulogne, and, 
slipping by the French army in the night, surprised 
Montreuil. The road to Paris was now open to him ; 
the Royal family retired from Versailles ; Charles would 
have tried the fortune of the war himself, but a violent 
fit of the gout confined him to his palace. The Duke 
de Ventadour, by his injudicious motions, was incapable 
of stopping the King's progress ; he laid siege to Amiens, 
and it surrendered before the Duke could arrive to 
protect it. Neufchatel had the same fate ; and the 
King, astonished at his own success, had thoughts of 
making a flying march to Paris. The French army 
formed such an unwieldy body, that it was for ever 
exposed to the sudden attacks of the English. Venta- 
dour was but an indifferent General, and had to oppose 
a young Monarch, whose late actions rendered him the 
most celebrated commander in Europe. 

In the mean time the attention of Peter was called off, 
in a great measure, from the English war, by a new 
enemy, that had made a formidable attack upon his 
dominions. Bajazet, Emperor of the Turks, an old 
enemy of the Czar's, thought this a fair opportunity to 
recover Crim Tartary, which the Russian Monarch had 
conquered from him in the last war. 1 In this situation 
he listened, with pleasure to the remonstrances of the 
English Ambassador, who left no stone unturned that 
could engage the Emperor in the war. Bajazet thought 
the moment so fair, when Peter was engaged in a most 

1 [This is not a very happy forecast : the Crimea was conquered 
by Russia as early as 1783, instead of in the end of the nineteenth 


expensive war with Great Britain, that the Grand Vizier, 
Selim, at the head of two hundred thousand men marched 
into Russia. The Czar collected his forces to oppose 
this inundation of Turks ; and just as the two armies 
were beginning the war, the Russian fleet of near one 
hundred sail of the line appeared in the Channel. 

The British fleet, under the Duke of Grafton (who, 
though he had sometimes met with ill success, was one 
of the greatest Admirals Britain had ever produced), was 
about equal in force to that of the Russians. It was not 
long before the two Admirals found an opportunity to 
engage. It would be tedious to give the particulars of 
this furious battle ; it lasted a whole day without being 
decisive ; the Russians lost five ships of the line, and 
the English four ; if any thing, the advantage was for 
the latter ; but before morning the two fleets parted, 
and, the wind blowing a violent storm for the two next 
days, nineteen Russian men of war were driven ashore 
on the coast of Norfolk, and were there burnt ; the 
English lost only two, but had several dismasted. 

This stroke secured to George his superiority at sea. 
This navy was so powerful that the French fleets were 
blocked up in their ports, and were not strong enough 
to look the English in the face ; so that Charles now saw 
all his hopes blasted, and the King of England at the 
head of a victorious army ready to march to Paris itself. 
In this critical situation he determined to sue for peace. 
George, whose conduct was guided by justice, not by in- 
ordinate ambition, readily listened to the proposal. He 
appointed ambassadors to meet those of France at 
Beauvais, where a peace was soon agreed to. The Czar 


sent an ambassador on his part, so it became general 
between the three nations. The principal article was, 
That Charles should cause to be paid to the King of 
Great Britain two millions of pounds sterling, for the 
expences of the war, at three equal payments, six 
months between each. The treaty being signed by the 
two Monarchs and the Russian Ambassador, 1 George 
withdrew his forces out of France, and evacuated all 
his conquests. 

1 ii Jan., 1902. 


A.D. 1902-1916. 

Interest of the National Debt reduced. The building of the palace 
and city of Stanley. The Royal Academies. George VI. 
encourages the Arts, Sciences, and Literature. 

NEVER was any quarrel concluded more gloriously. 
George now found himself at peace with all the world ; 
he had been victorious against the most potent mon- 
archy on earth, and another formidable kingdom. These 
successes secured him abroad, but at home all was con- 
fusion. The stopping payment of the interest of the 
public debt had thrown innumerable families into 
extreme indigence ; yet the measure was absolutely 
necessary, and the very existence of the nation had 
been preserved by it. But as the war was now at an 
end, the Parliament took under their consideration the 
state of the National Debt ; and, after a multitude of 
proposals, calculations, and debates, they agreed, by a 
small majority, that the interest, at the rate it then 
stood, was a burthen too great for the nation to bear, 
and appointed a committee to draw up a bill for reducing 
it. The preamble to this bill set forth the sad internal 
state of the nation painted, in the strongest colours, 


the impossibility of paying the interest on the national 
funds showed that an attempt to go on in doing it 
must end in a total bankruptcy, and the utter ruin of 
all concerned that under these circumstances half the 
present interest would be of more real value than the 
whole, in the dangerous situation they were now in ; 
and the bill accordingly enacted, that the interest on 
every fund of which the national fund was composed 
should be reduced one half. 1 

History cannot produce an instance of such an event 
as this being effected with so little disturbance. All 
ranks of people seemed content with their half; they 
had lately seen the extreme danger to which the nation 
was reduced for want of money, and they cheerfully 
considered, that, if they lost a half of their income, it 
was to preserve their lives, their liberties, and the 
remainder of their fortunes. This great event would 
not have been brought about with so much ease and 
expedition, but the path was sketched out by the bill, 
which was drawn up for the same (but which miscarried) 
in the reign of George IV. But it no sooner passed 
into a law now, than its good consequences were 
immediately felt by the nation in general. Such an 
enormous incumbrance was no sooner removed, than 
George found his kingdom vigorous and more formidable 
than ever. 

1 [That is from 4 to 2 per cent. That the former rate prevailed 
in 1900 is shown by the figures on p. 8, giving ^8,500,000 as the 
interest on ,211,000,000 or thereabouts. As the interest for 1903 
was, after the change, just ^4,250,000, we must conclude that the 
King had somehow contrived to fight through the war of 1900-1902 
without any further borrowing.] 



It may not be unentertaining to the reader, here to 
lay before him the particulars of the grants of the year 
1903, after the peace had taken place. 

50,000 seamen, including marines and ordnance \ 

for sea service J 

45,000 men, land-forces, in Colonies and Great ^ 

Britain, etc., and ordnance for ditto / 

Greenwich Hospital 
Milford Hospital 
Building, rebuilding, and repairing his Majesty's ) 

ships ) 

To the nine Foundling Hospitals 
Adding new fortifications to Batavia, etc. 
To his Majesty for fortifying other places in the 

East Indies 
Deepening and enlarging the harbour of Hull, ) 

and docks j 

Civil List 

Interest of the national debt 









: 2,485,000! 

A young monarch of his active spirit, was not likely 
to waste the time which peace left on his hands in idle 
dissipation. He understood many arts perfectly, and 
was tolerably well acquainted with most. His favourite, 
the Duke of Suffolk, was also a lover of literature, and 

1 [Putting the actual estimates for 1898-9 beside these figures, 
we find them eight times as great. An army of 250,000 regulars 
(excluding India, militia, and volunteers) costs us ,20,000,000. 
A navy of 93,000 men requires ^25,000,000. The Civil Service 
estimates run to about ^22,000,000.] 



spent a great part of his time in the conversation of 
men of letters. The Arts and Sciences at this period, 
in England, wanted nothing but encouragement to 
raise them to a very splendid height, and to make the 
age of George VI. rival any of those remote ones that 
are so celebrated in history. It is both entertaining and 
curious to reflect on their state during this reign, and 
compare it with the present ; those great men whose 
names alone would have immortalized the age of George 
VI. are now gone, and have left none to succeed them. 
Indeed they still live in their admirable works, but have 
left few successors to their genius and abilities. But to 
leave this digression, let us take a view of the arts in 
the period of which we are speaking. 

George had a natural taste for them ; and what was 
of equal consequence to their success, was rich, liberal, 
and magnificent. Hitherto his time had been engrossed 
by more weighty concerns ; but now that peace left him 
the master of his time, he displayed a taste and genius 
in more arts than that of war. London, though the 
wonder of the world, never pleased the King. Its 
prodigious size was its only boast ; it contained few 
buildings that did honour to the nation ; in a word, it 
was a city finely calculated for trade, but not for the 
residence of the polite arts. The meanness of his 
Majesty's palace disgusted him ; he had a taste for 
architecture, and determined to exert it in raising an 
edifice, that should at once do honour to his kingdom, 
and add splendour to his court. 

In Rutlandshire, near Uppingham, was a small hunt- 
ing box of the late King's, which George admired ; not 


for the building, but its beautiful situation. In his 
hours of rural amusements the king formed the design 
of raising a palace. Few parts of his dominions could 
afford a more desirable spot for such a purpose. The 
old seat stood on an elevated situation, which com- 
manded an extensive prospect over the adjacent country. 
It was almost surrounded with extensive woods ; which, 
having been artfully planted, added the greatest beauty 
to the prospect, without intercepting the view. On one 
side there was an easy descent of about three miles, 
which led into an extensive plain, through which a river 
took its meandering course. Many villages seemed to 
rise here and there from out the woods, which gave a 
great variety to the scene, and the fertile plain was one 
continued prospect of villages, groves, meadows, and 
rivulets, and all was in the neighbourhood of a noble 
and capacious forest. 1 

This charming situation must have struck any person 
of less taste than the King ; he was charmed with it at , 
the first sight, and soon after thought of building a 
palace on so advantageous a situation. The famous 
Gilbert, whose name is immortalized by so many works 
of genius, was, at that time, architect to the King. He 
drew the plans of several palaces, out of which his 
Majesty chose one ; and immediately set him about 
the work. Many difficulties were to be overcome, 
before even the first stone could be laid ; the fabric was 
to be built with Portland stone, which could not be 

1 [There is no place of the name of Stanley near Uppingham. 
The situation described is that of Stoke Dry or Glaston. The 
river is the Welland, and the distant forest that of Rockingham.] 


brought to the spot without an infinite expence over- 
land. To remedy this inconvenience, the parliament 
passed an act to make the river Welland navigable to 
the very plain, at the bottom of the hill on which the 
intended palace was to be raised. The same session 
also granted his Majesty a million sterling towards the 
expence of building this magnificent pile. The King 
spared no cost to render this edifice the most magnificent 
and superb palace in the universe. Gilbert had an un- 
limited power granted him to follow his genius in every 
particular, without the least restraint. Fleets of ships 
were continually passing from Portland to Hull and 
Lynn with cargos of stone, which were conveyed in 
barges to the place where the palace was to be built. 
Ten sail were sent to the different ports of Italy, to load 
the finest marbles. In short, nothing was spared to 
make this palace the wonder of the world ; * but the 
erection of it was only a part of the King's design. 

In the plain above described his Majesty formed the 
scheme of raising a city, but was staggered at the 
thoughts of the expence. However, Moor the architect 
hinted to him, that if his Majesty was to raise a few 
public edifices, and remove some of the courts from 
London thither, they would alone occasion numbers 
to build near their residence ; that his Majesty's fixing 
his own residence there, would also occasion a vast 
increase of building. The King was pleased with the 
thought, and determined to execute it. The great 
Gilbert drew the ground plot of that part which 
now reaches from St. Mary's church quite to Great 
1 It was founded in 1907. 


Hollis-Street and Scotland Square. St. Stephen's 
was his work too, and is a beautiful monument of his 
taste and genius ; that church and the Academy for 
Architecture l were the two first public buildings that 
were raised ; Moor was the artist who erected the latter ; 
but this deserves a more particular mention. 

Architecture was one of the King's favourite studies ; 
but its being an art was recommendation enough for 
that great Monarch to encourage it. The plan on which 
this Academy was formed, was finely imagined to secure 
a perpetual protection. It consisted of a President, with 
a salary of two thousand pounds a year ; Gilbert was 
the first. Six 2 senior and twelve 3 junior professors had, 
the former five, and the latter three hundred pounds a 
year each. What a noble institution was this ! Worthy 
the Monarch who formed the outline, and the Minister 
that finished the design. 4 George had the satisfaction of 
seeing Stanley increased beyond what his most ardent 
wishes could have desired. Most of the nobility, and 
many of the rich commoners, in imitation of their 
Sovereign, erected magnificent palaces ; it grew the 
fashion among the higher order of his subjects to erect 
houses at Stanley. The Dukes of Suffolk, Buckingham, 
Richmond, Kent, and Bridgewater, the Earls of Surrey, 
Winchelsea, Middleton and Bury, and Mr. Molesworth, 
particularly distinguished themselves by the splendour 

1 Both erected in 1909. 

2 The first instituted were Comins, Holt, Moor, Brown, Salviola 
the Spaniard, and Stevens. 

:! James, Philipson, Padrao an Italian, Rickson, Manly, Hare, 
Thompson, Johnson, Weal, Place, Richards, and Stephenson. 
4 The Duke of Suffolk. 


of their palaces, amongst many others. But what gave 
a prodigious increase to this noble city was the erection 
of the Senate House : that noble building, which is now 
the admiration of all Europe, was the master-piece of 
the celebrated Moor. The front is certainly one of the 
finest pieces of architecture in the world. It was 
finished in 1913. The same year the Parliament 
assembled in it ; and here I cannot help quoting a 
passage in their address, as the praise it contains was 
perfectly merited by this great Monarch. " Assembled 
in this edifice, which is one of the many marks of your 
Majesty's magnificence, and princely encouragement 
of the arts and sciences, we cannot omit congratulating 
your Majesty on the completion of so noble a monument 
of your grandeur and the nation's glory. And we 
return your Majesty our most dutiful acknowledge- 
ments, for so splendid a mark of your esteem for 
your Parliament, which led you to erect so magnifi- 
cent a Senate House out of your private revenue. 
We join \vith the rest of your Majesty's subjects in 
expressing our admiration of your royal and princely 
virtues ; your noble encouragement of the arts and 
sciences, adds a fresh lustre to the title of hero, which 
your Majesty's great actions had before most justly 
conferred." This session 'voted the King a million 
sterling for the senate house, and granted five hundred 
thousand pounds a year till Ms Majesty's building should 
be finislied. 

Nothing could exceed the magnificence of Gilbert's plan 
for this glorious city. The houses were all built to form 
one general front on each side of every street. Nothing 


was used but Portland stone. The streets were broad, 
well paved, and the buildings not too high. Many 
noble squares were marked out, and some finished. 
The theatre was the work of his Majesty himself, who 
drew the plan, and showing it to Gilbert, that great 
man told the King it had not a single fault ; but this 
compliment had not sincerity enough in it. It certainly 
contains some blemishes, but is undoubtedly a work of 
genius. The three centuries before his Majesty's reign 
did not produce so fine a building. Its simplicity and 
grandeur are admirable. 

The Academy of Painting was another institution 
which would alone have rendered the memory of any 
Monarch dear to the arts and sciences. It was reserved 
for the age of George VI. to be graced with a list of 
great artists in this country, whose works should render 
their own names as well as his immortal. From the 
foundation of the English monarchy to the age of 
George, Britain had never seen a painter that could 
rank with the first class of foreign artists. 1 But though 
this great King could not create, yet he drew by his 
encouragements and rewards, artists from their retire- 
ments, and set them to work. No genius ever met with 
even a rebuke from George; merit was sure to be 
rewarded ; the excellence in any art the certain road to 
fortune. Gilbert was the architect of the building, and 
its grandeur is well known ; the president of this 
academy had a salary of two thousand pounds a year ; 
ten seats, each five hundred ; and forty young artists 

1 [This is rather hard on Reynolds and Gainsborough, both well- 
known men by 1763.] 


were maintained, and had apartments allotted them 
with pensions of one hundred pounds a year each. 
Nothing was ever better planned to promote the 
progress of this delightful art ; and its success in 
England under this reign was accordingly prodigious. 
Nicholson, an English artist, and one whose name will 
for ever stand foremost in the list of painters, was the 
President of the Academy. Besides this appointment 
he was loaded with riches, and created a Baronet. The 
Battle of the Angels, in the saloon of the palace, which 
this great man painted, is second to no picture in the 
world. Tomkins, Vere, and Norton, were all English 
artists, and not inferior to the celebrated Italians of the 
age of Leo X. The first was equal to Correggio him- 
self, and the last exceeded Dominichino and Guido. Who 
does not glow with ardour at the rememberance of the 
works of these divine masters ? Who does not regret 
their loss ? they are gone, and have left but few behind 
them that can pretend to any degree of competition. 
The other artists that had seats in the academy are 
well known : Simpson painted the Jupiter Olympius in 
the saloon of Apollo, a picture which would alone have 
immortalised him. The most splendid court in Europe 
was sure to be attended with a multitude of foreign 
artists. Spinoza, Martileat, and Carviante, were received 
in the most distinguished manner by the King, and had 
each pensions of five hundred pounds granted them, 
besides being liberally paid for their works. Never was 
any art so much obliged to a Sovereign, as that of 
painting to George VI. 

The Palace itself, which has for so many years been 


the delight and wonder of Britain, was finished in 1915, 
eight years after its foundation. Never was any building 
raised so expeditiously. It was, indeed, astonishing ; 
but, the King sparing no expense, Gilbert finished this 
superb edifice in so short a time, by means of the 
infinite number of hands he kept constantly employed 
on it. It would be endless to describe this amazing pile 
of building ; and it has already been done in all the 
languages of Europe. The famous Escurial of Philip the 
Second of Spain, and Versailles of Lewis XIV. of France, 
of both which we read such pompous accounts, were 
infinitely exceeded by Stanley. The shell of the building 
alone cost the King above eight millions sterling. The 
adorning and furnishing it was the work of above fifty 
years, and the expense infinite. The ceilings and 
apartments were painted by Nicholson, Tomkins, Vere, 
Norton, and many other celebrated artists. The King 
had no sooner begun to build than he sent connoisseurs 
through all Europe to collect paintings, statues, rarities, 
books, and manuscripts, and in these commissions he 
spared no expense. He even dispatched Ambassadors 
to Constantinople, and throughout all Asia, to make 
collections ; and always choosing the properest men for 
executing his commands, he succeeded better than any 
Monarch that ever attempted to tread in his footsteps. 
The palace of Stanley thus became the repository of all 
the curiosities which the world afforded. No wonder 
his palace became so celebrated, and drew such numbers 
of foreigners into England, when the collection of 
pictures and statues it contained were almost equal in 
value, and number of capital pieces, to what remained 


throughout all Europe ; and his library contained above 
thirteen hundred thousand valuable books and manu- 

This glorious building was not only the residence of 
royalty, but might properly be called the Temple of the 
Muses. In his hours of relaxation from business the 
King here conversed with Reynolds, that great genius, 
who united the elegance of Mason and the genius of 
Shakespeare : with Young, whose comedies far exceeded 
those of the celebrated Symonds : with Pine, who, to 
the inventive imagination of Milton, added the correct- 
ness and harmony of Pope. What a memorable epoch 
was it in history, when a George VI. conversed with 
three great poets, in a palace built by Gilbert, and 
painted by Nicholson ! 

But an event happened that, for a while, turned off 
the attention of the King from these sublime employ- 


A.D. 1917-1918. 

Russians and French attack the Empire. Battle of Augsburg. 
Battle of Lutzen. Siege of Vienna. George VI. assists the 
Emperor Frederick. Famous march. Battle of Vienna. 
Russians and French driven out of Germany. George attacks 
France, and enters Paris. Battle of Melun. 

WHEN we consider the dispositions of the three princi- 
pal Sovereigns at this period on the Continent, it will not 
appear wonderful that the peace between them should 
not t>e lasting. The ambition of Peter, the cunning 
policy of Charles, and the weakness of Frederick, 
formed such contrasts as must necessarily produce no 
long friendship among them. The Emperor of Russia, 
ever restless and weary of peace, looked with envious 
eyes on the fair provinces of Germany. The weakness 
of the reigning Emperor gave him a fair opportunity to 
attempt the execution of his schemes. He entered into 
a negotiation with Charles, which ended in a treaty, 
aimed at Frederic. It was agreed that Mecklenbourg, 
Pomerania, and some other of the northern provinces, 
should be conquered and ceded to Peter, and the 
southern Austrian duchies to Charles. This flagrant 
treaty was no sooner signed, than pretences were sought 


for, to break with the unsuspecting Frederic. Between 
ambitious Princes these are seldom wanted long. It 
would be endless to repeat even the titles of the 
memorials, answers, and rejoinders that were pub- 
lished between the parties ; but the Emperor, rinding 
his enemies were determined to attack him, prepared 
for his defense. The Duke of Saxony, his General, 
collected his troops, and found himself at the head of 
seventy thousand men ; with these he marched against 
the King of France, who, at the head of near one 
hundred thousand men, had begun the war. The 
Duke attacked the King near Augsburg ; and, after 
a desperate and bloody battle, defeated him. 1 This 
victory stopped the progress of the French arms, and 
enabled the Duke to direct his march towards Branden- 
burg, which was being over-run by the Russians. Peter, 
at the head of ninety thousand men, had taken Berlin, 
and two other Russian armies were making a rapid pro- 
gress. The Duke of Saxony, with his victorious army, 
made flying marches to repel these invaders. It was not 
long before he had an opportunity of righting the Czar. 
About four o'clock in the morning the two armies joined 
battle, in the very plain where Gustavus Adolphus the 
Great fought the battle of Lutzen. Success hung 
quivering over each army for a considerable time ; 
at last the Duke was killed, and his death was followed 
by the total defeat of his whole army. 2 This great 
victory was hardly gained when Peter was informed 
that his ally, the King of France, had recovered his late 
disgrace by gaining a signal victory over the Electors 
1 Sept. 14, 1917. ~ Oct. ii, 1917. 


of Hanover and Bavaria, who, with fifty thousand men, 
had taken arms in defence of the Empire. 

Frederick's affairs were now fast advancing to ruin ; 
the Russians on one side and the French on the other 
pressed him so hard, that he determined, with a strong 
garrison and plenty of provisions, to shut himself up in 
Vienna, one of the strongest cities in Europe. He sent 
Ambassadors to George VI. to implore his protection, 
and after seeing his enemies in possession of his domi- 
nions, shut himself up in his capital ; which Peter, with 
one hundred and fifty thousand men, immediately 

The King of England, who panted for glory when 
honour pointed out the path, was now moved by 
humanity : he pitied the condition of the unhappy 
Emperor, and determined to assist him. He laid 
before the Parliament, ever ready to concur with their 
Monarch in prosecuting the interest and honour of 
their country, the state of Europe ; displayed the sad 
situation of the house of Brandenburg, and asked 
their concurrence in supporting it. The wishes of the 
whole kingdom attended the King in this demand ; and 
the Commons having granted the necessary supplies, 
George increased his forces to eighty thousand men, 
while his fleet was manned and ready for service in case 
of necessity. Very soon after a vast fleet of transports 
wafted the King, at the head of sixty thousand of the 
bravest troops in the world, to the coast of Flanders. 
Had the Emperor been in a less critical situation, he 
could have drawn one of his enemies off by marching 
to Paris ; but nothing could save Frederic except 


raising the siege of Vienna. George, therefore, lost no 
time, but began a long and dangerous march, through 
a country wholely possessed by the enemy. He had 
with him a vast train of artillery, and a multitude of 
baggage waggons, yet, thus incumbered, he ventured on 
one of the most dangerous expeditions that ever was 
known. All the passes, quite from Flanders to Austria, 
were in the hands of the French and Russians : he had 
many fortresses to pass by ; and a prodigious number 
of rivers to cross. Yet all these difficulties so far from 
slackening the activity of the King, served only to 
spur him more eagerly on. The particulars of this cele- 
brated march are well known. George, almost without 
the loss of a man, arrived in Austria, on the banks of 
the Danube, after one of the most expeditious marches 
ever known. He slipped by three armies, whose 
only business was to intercept him ; he passed every 
river in safety, and, to the astonishment of all the 
world, was in a condition to fight the Czar of Moscovy, 
almost as soon as that Monarch had heard of his 

Peter immediately raised the siege, and, drawing up 
his forces in the plains of Vienna, prepared to fight the 
King of England, who was also engaged in the same 
employment. The Russian army had a superiority of 
above sixty thousand men, consequently their numbers 
were two to one ; but no dangers could depress the 
heart of George. Having, with moving batteries, secured 
the rear and wings of his army from being surrounded, 
he placed his artillery in the most advantageous manner ; 
and dividing his front into two lines, at the head of the 


first he began the attack, after his artillery had played 
on the enemy an hour, with great success. The Russian 
infantry, animated by the presence of their Czar, under 
whom they had so often conquered, repulsed him with 
some loss. The King hereupon made a second and 
still more furious attack, but yet without success. At 
that critical moment the Duke of Devonshire, who com- 
manded his left wing, sent for immediate assistance, as 
he was hard pressed by the superior numbers of the 
enemy. George flew like lightning to his weakened 
troops, and placing himself at the head of six regiments 
of dragoons, made such a furious attack on the eager 
Russians as threw them into disorder, and following his 
advantage, pushed them with great success. Thus, 
having given his left time to rally and renew the attack, 
he returned to the centre, where his presence was 
equally wanted. The Czar, having repulsed his two 
first attacks, and finding the English at a stand, not 
knowing the reason, made a most violent and well-directed 
assault on them, which being repulsed, he renewed it 
with still greater vigour. The King of England coming 
up at that moment, and placing himself at the head of 
fifteen thousand horse, attacked the centre of the Russian 
army with such irresistable impetuosity that he bore 
down all before him. Every effort the Czar could make 
proved ineffectual ; the King pursuing his success, re- 
newed his attacks on the broken enemy, which threw 
their whole army into the utmost confusion. The Czar 
ordered a retreat, but it was made in miserable order ; 
the King dispatched the Duke of Devonshire to pursue 
the enemy with thirty thousand men, who made a 


prodigious slaughter ; the vast numbers of the Russians 
only increasing their confusion. 1 

Thus did this magnanimous Monarch gain this 
glorious victory, against double his own number, over 
some of the best troops in Europe, who had been used 
to victory. Never could General show more dis- 
tinguishing proofs of a most heroic courage, than the 
King in this great day. This victory was thoroughly 
complete ; thirty-five thousand Russians were left dead 
in the field of battle, twenty-four thousand made 
prisoners, and thirteen thousand wounded ; in short, 
the Czar, before he arrived in Denmark, had lost above 
eighty thousand men, a loss in one battle almost un- 
paralleled. The trophies were two hundred pieces of 
brass cannon, besides colours and drums, &c. without 
number ; and their military chest was taken, containing 
above thirty millions of roubles, a prodigious sum. 

But the greatness of the King's victory was best seen 
in its consequences ; the Emperor Frederick embraced 
him as his deliverer, and Germany was entirely cleared 
of both Russians and French ; for Charles, on the news 
of the battle of Vienna, which was like a thunder-bolt 
to him, had abandoned all his hasty acquisitions, and 
retired into France, to prepare for King George's recep- 
tion, as he every day expected an attack. Nor was he 
mistaken ; the King had no sooner seen the Emperor 
firm on his late tottering throne, than he directed his 
march towards France, determining to punish Charles 
for his unjust attack on Frederick. He met with no 
opposition, and entered France, as he would have 
1 May 20, 1918. 


entered England. In three weeks the whole duchy of 
Lorraine was subdued ; and Rheims opened its gates to 
the conqueror. George advanced towards Paris with 
hasty marches ; the Court in the greatest terror retired 
to Orleans, and on the sixth of September, 1918, the 
King of England entered Paris at the head of his 
victorious army. 

The whole French nation were astonished at the 
success of George, and a general despondency ensued 
every where, but in the breast of Charles. That Prince 
was in the neighbourhood of Lyons, at the head of 
a powerful army, but in doubt whether he should fight 
the English or no. His very crown was at stake ; a 
defeat must inevitably strip him of his dominions ; and 
on the other hand, a pusillanimous conduct could not 
but sink the spirits of his people still lower, and be 
attended with perhaps as fatal consequences. But the 
rapid success of the King of England, hardly allowed 
him time to think : that Monarch had divided his 
army into two parts ; with one he was over-running 
Normandy, while the Duke of Devonshire with the 
other was conquering Picardie, the Isle of France, and 
Champagne ; by the end of October all the northern 
provinces of France were in the hands of the English. 
In the mean time, Charles had increased his army to 
one hundred and thirty thousand men, but the greater 
part were but indifferently disciplined. A large body of 
French troops were in the service of the King of Venice, 
and were now on their march home ; but without staying 
for these, Charles advanced towards Paris. George 
immediately collected his forces, and prudently en- 



trenched himself in a very advantageous spot ; here the 
King of France attacked him, and fought in that 
desperate manner which might be expected from a 
brave man, whose kingdom was at stake. But the 
genius of George prevailed. The English cannon were 
placed so advantageously, and so well served, that every 
attack the French could make, served but to increase 
the prodigious number of their slain. Charles at last 
drew off his men from the attack, when the King of 
England, letting loose ten thousand horse, on the 
weakened, and almost vanquished enemy, completed 
his victory, with the total defeat of the French. 1 Orlea- 
nois, Britany, and Burgundy, were immediately over-run 
by the English troops. But winter coming on, the 
King left the command in France to the Duke of Devon- 
shire ; and crossing the water, landed in England ; where 
he was received by all his expecting subjects with the 
loudest acclamations of unfeigned joy. 

1 Nov. 7, 1918. 


A.D. 1919-1920. 

War renewed. Siege and Relief of Orleans. The King wounded. 
Battle of Arleux. Battle of Alengon. Death of King 
Charles. George re-enters Paris. Leaves France, and returns 
to England. 

THE King of England, who thought he had done 
nothing while he had any thing to do, was soon in 
France ; his troops having enjoyed every necessary 
refreshment, were collected very early in the spring, 
and rendezvoused in the neighbourhood of Paris. 
Charles, on his side, did everything that industry, 
artifice, or bravery could effect, to retrieve the terrible 
condition of his affairs. He had applied to the Court 
of Madrid for succours, and met with success ; the 
King of Spain furnished him with money, and by his 
great vigilance he had collected his army as soon as 
his enemy. George opened the campaign by besieging 
Orleans, a city of the greatest importance ; and Charles 
determined to attempt relieving it. He formed a scheme 
for surprising the King in his entrenchments ; one dark 
night, about twelve o'clock, he advanced with near 
thirty thousand men, through a hollow way which led to 


the King's lines : by some well conducted motions, he 
cut off the advanced guards, and knocking down several 
sentinels, made a vigorous attack on the English en- 
trenchments ; the troops, unprepared for action, ran 
hastily to their arms ; the king flew to the quarter 
where Charles made his attack, and found General 
Shipton at the head of four regiments, which were by 
that time half formed, sustaining the vigorous efforts of 
the French ; he rallied and formed his men as fast as 
possible, but with all the coolness imaginable : no effort 
was left untried by our young Monarch, to repulse the 
enemy ; he drove them back twice, but still they renewed 
the attack ; at last, George unfortunately was wounded 
in the side by a musket ball, and carried off the field. 
No other stroke could be half so despairing to his 
troops ; they gave way almost immediately ; but yet 
the Earl of Bury retired with tolerable good order. 
The English commanders greatly distinguished them- 
selves in this action, particularly the Earl who con- 
ducted the retreat. 1 

Charles fought with the greatest bravery, and led on 
his troops with the most heroic firmness : he showed 
equal conduct and courage in the scheming, and exe- 
cuting his plan. He revived by this action the spirits of 
his whole kingdom. It was indeed no inconsiderable 
honour to triumph over the King of England ; though the 
wound that young hero received was Charles's best friend. 
But the victory greatly raised his reputation. The 
English were obliged to raise the siege immediately, and 
the King was carried to Mayenne ; his wound was 

i May 7, 1919, 


not dangerous, but was not likely to be healed soon. 
Nothing could exceed the sorrow of the whole army 
at this unhappy accident ; they loved the King as a 
father, and never fought under him but with an eager 
certainty of victory. All his dominions wept on receiving 
the news, and offered up the most fervent prayers to 
heaven for his recovery. The Duke of Devonshire 
commanded a small army in Paris, and hearing of the 
King's defeat, was at some difficulty to know how to 
proceed. Charles was on the full march to his capital, 
and his troops were too few to oppose him yet he 
could not quit the city without orders. However, he 
soon received them from the King, to join the troops 
under the Earl of Bury. It was with some difficulty 
that he effected this, for Charles was bent on making 
him and his whole army prisoners. But slipping by 
him, he made three forced marches, and joined the 
royal army, of which he then took the command. 

Touraine, Berry, Nivernois, the Isle of France, Cham- 
pagne, and part of Normandy, were soon over-run by 
the French troops; Charles found his army was in- 
creased to near two hundred thousand men, in high 
spirits at his late victory. But what chiefly increased 
his reputation, was the possession of Paris. Flushed 
at the fair appearance his affairs wore, he thought of 
giving battle to the Duke of Devonshire, before George 
was well enough to command in person. 

His generals indeed all advised him against the 
scheme ; and represented to him that the English army 
would decrease every day ; that his subjects were so 
inspirited with his late success, that they would rise 


against his enemies wherever they still possessed the 
command ; but that in hazarding a battle, he put all his 
advantages to the stake at once, at a time when a 
defeat must be attended with the most fatal conse- 
quences. These representations had little effect on 
Charles ; impatient for a complete victory, he collected 
one hundred and twenty thousand men, and at the 
head of that vast army began his march to attack the 

The King had been some days removed to Caen, when 
he was informed of the motions of Charles. He sent 
immediate orders to the Duke of Devonshire, to fortify 
himself in the strongest manner, and to choose the best 
situation for a camp for that purpose. His Grace 
obeyed the command without delay, and fixed on an 
admirable situation at Conlie ; l he soon rendered his 
camp impregnable, and was at the same time able to 
receive all sorts of supplies from the country behind 
him. The Earl of Bury, with eight thousand men, was 
at Alehgon ; and General Villiers, with ten thousand, at 
Rennes, so that the three armies formed a line, which 
perfectly secured them. On the third of June, 2 Charles 
arrived in sight of the English camp ; but was sur- 
prised to find how admirably every thing was disposed 
for his reception ; he found it was impossible to attack 
the Duke with the least prospect of success : he assaulted 

1 [Oddly enough Conlie was to see a great camp in the nine- 
teenth century. It was the place chosen for the mobilization of 
the Breton Garde Mobile in the autumn of 1870 during the 
Franco- German War.] 


several of his posts, but always met such a reception, as 
convinced him that nothing could be effected. He 
turned off towards Paris, after this ineffectual march, and 
laid siege to Chartres, a strong fortress, and nearer to 
the capital than any other in the hands of the English. 

The King of France had hardly undertaken the siege, 
before he had intelligence of an event, which both 
obliged him to raise it, and gave him great uneasiness. 
General Sommers had commanded an army of twenty 
thousand English in Flanders, from the opening of the 
war; Charles had lately detached the Marquis de 
Senetraire, at the head of forty thousand men, to give 
him battle, or prevent his joining the Duke of Devon- 
shire, as he had made some motions which indicated a 
design to undertake that dangerous expedition. Sene- 
traire, with all the rashness of a young soldier, for he 
was but twenty-two, attacked Sommers in his strong 
entrenchments, and after a sharp engagement was totally 
defeated. The English General made the best use of 
so fortunate an affair ; the battle was fought near 
Arleux, and quitting the field, he made a flying march 
with his victorious troops to Amiens, from thence he 
flew towards Rouen ; when the King of France, being 
alarmed at the celerity of his marches, determined to 
raise the siege of Chartres, and hasten himself to meet 

George, whose wound now began to heal, was in pain 
for his brave General, and finding himself pretty well 
recovered, resolved to place himself at the head of his 
army. He was advised against it by his surgeons, but in 
vain : the impetuosity of his courage, could not be 


stopped ; and he arrived at the camp the 2Qth of June. 
He immediately drew his forces out of their entrench- 
ments, and, calling in the detachments commanded by 
the Earl of Bury, and General Villiers, he again found 
himself at the head of a gallant army, of seventy 
thousand men in good spirits, and who longed to wipe 
off their late disgrace. Charles had marched to Breteuil, 
to intercept Sommers, and he had stationed his troops 
in so judicious a manner, that the Englishmen could not 
pass him. The King of England having drawn in all 
his scattered troops, moved towards the French King ; 
who prepared to receive him in the most vigorous 
manner. It was plainly foreseen that a general engage- 
ment must quickly ensue, for Charles drew up his army, 
to the amount of one hundred and twenty thousand men, 
in order of battle, on the plains of Alengon : George 
came in sight of him the fourth of July, and prepared 
that night to give him battle. The French army was 
posted in the most advantageous manner. In their 
front was a rivulet, behind which were nine redoubts 
mounted with cannon ; their wings were defended in 
the same manner, and every approach guarded with 

The King having reconnoitred the enemy's position, 
drew up his troops on the same plain, at some distance 
in their front. As the French army outspread his, he 
disposed his cannon in his wings, in such a manner as to 
prevent his being surrounded ; himself commanded the 
centre, the Duke of Devonshire the right, and the Earl 
of Bury the left. Every thing being prepared for the 
engagement, the King ordered the signal to be made for 


beginning it, and about nine in the morning that battle 
began which was at once to decide the fate of two 
mighty kingdoms. The French army was the most 
numerous ; and commanded by their King. The 
Monarch of the English also headed them, and they 
were eager to engage, and obliterate by their bravery 
the memory of their late defeat. The fire of the 
artillery was the beginning of this great action ; as the 
British troops advanced under cover of their own 
cannon, that of the enemy played on them with great 
fury, and some effect. But the skill of the English 
engineers so well directed their fire, that several 
batteries of the enemy were thrown into confusion. 
The King however soon brought on warmer ,work ; at the 
head of the first line of his centre he began the attack, 
which was received with firmness. The Earl of Bury at 
the same time with the left, fell on the right of the 
French. For about an hour the success of the day was 
doubtful ; but the right of the English army then 
beginning the attack, threw the French into a little con- 
fusion. Charles, however, flying with great celerity from 
his centre, repulsed the Duke of Devonshire, and attacked 
him in his turn, drawing off a part of his centre to 
sustain his left ; the Duke repelled his attack, but it was 
renewed with such vigour, that he found it necessary to 
send an Aid de Camp to the King for assistance. 
George drew twenty battalions from his centre, and all 
his horse from his left. This was a most masterly and 
rapid motion ; just as the Duke was thinking of a 
retreat, the King came up at the head of his fresh 
troops : the field of battle was now almost changed ; the 


French had been so often repulsed in their attacks, that 
it was even dangerous to pursue their advantage after 
the great loss they had suffered, but Charles, contrary to 
the advice of his generals, renewed his attack after 
George was arrived. The French troops fatigued with 
fighting almost three hours, in a hot day, made but a 
faint impression, the King easily repulsed them, and 
placing himself at the head of his cavalry, made a most 
furious attack on his almost defeated enemies. Nothing 
resisted him, the whole French army was broke through 
in a moment ; and the slaughter that ensued was terrible. 
While the King burst through every battalion of 
French, with the irresistable fury of his cavalry, 
General Young brought up sixty pieces of cannon, 
which played on their broken troops near an hour. All 
the efforts of Charles were in vain ; the battle was lost 
beyond the power of recovery ; and to complete the 
misfortunes of the French, their King, as he was 
endeavouring to rally his men, was killed by a cannon 
ball. The Earl of Bury, with twenty thousand men 
pursued the flying enemy, and made a vast multitude of 

Never was any battle more critically won. The 
English army was on the point of being defeated, which 
would certainly have been its fate, had not the King 
recovered all, by one of the most masterly strokes of 
generalship recorded in history. Never was there a 
braver soldier, or a more complete commander ; both 
characters he equally displayed in this celebrated 
battle : he received a slight wound in his left arm ; 
had three horses killed under him ; and during the 


whole action, exposed his person in the hottest fire. In 
killed and wounded he lost seven thousand men, but 
what is remarkable, not one officer of great note. The 
French nation never sustained a more terrible blow 
never one more decisive. Besides the King they lost 
thirty-two thousand men killed, nine thousand wounded, 
and twelve thousand prisoners ; in all fifty-three thousand, 
an amazing number ; among whom were the Princes of 
Conde, and Charlerois of the blood royal ; the Dukes of 
St. Omer, Rochefoucault, Ventadour, Amiens, and 
D'Elieu, many other Nobility of great rank, thirteen 
Lieutenant Generals, and five Major Generals, all 
killed. Among the prisoners were the Dukes of 
Bourdeaux, Rennes, St. Clair, D'Oyonne ; the Marshal 
Swyvione, and three Major Generals, besides many 
others of rank. One hundred and fifty pieces of 
cannon ; seventy mortars, and all the baggage of the 
army, with drums, standards, and colours without 
number were taken. 

But the prodigious consequences of this victory best 
proved its decisiveness. The road was open to Paris ; 
George, at the head of his victorious army took it ; his 
detachments over-run the whole province of Orleanois, 
even to Nevers : himself made a triumphant entry 
into Paris, and Philip V1L, the new French King, hardly 
reigned in his capital, before he was obliged to fly 
from it. All Picardie was immediately conquered ; 
the English themselves were amazed at the rapidity 
of their own success. Montargis, Sens, Troyes, and 
Auxerre, opened their gates to the Conqueror. The 
strongest fortresses held out but a few days, so 


universal was the terror which spread over all 
France. They had no prospect of relief; King 
Charles, who just before the battle of Alengon, which 
robbed him of his crown and his life, saw himself 
at the head of two hundred thousand men, left a 
successor who had even not ten thousand about his own 
person ; and yet half France was in his possession. But 
the English prosecuted their success with so much 
vigour, that every moment brought him tidings of their 

The rapidity with which George followed his blow 
surprised all Europe. By the beginning of August he 
was in the entire possession of Normandy, Brittany, the 
whole province of Orleanois, the Isle of France, Cham- 
pagne, Picardie, and Flanders. He had small detach- 
ments making important conquests in other provinces. 
The Duke of Devonshire acted in Lorraine, the Earl of 
Bury in Burgundy, General Sommers in Hainault, and 
General Villiers watched the motions of Philip, who had 
retired to Lyons. Thus the English were in possession 
of near half France. These wonderful successes, while 
they called to mind the remote days of Edward the 
Third and Henry the Fifth, yet totally eclipsed them ; 
and though a very great share of admiration was paid to 
the names of those celebrated heroes, a degree con- 
siderably higher attended the name of George. 

This heroic Monarch (who was at Paris) found himself 
much disordered after his late fatigues ; his wound had 
not received sufficient indulgence to complete a cure, so 
that his physicians by all means advised him to return 
for a short time to England, and repose himself after 


the vast fatigues he had undergone. The King, who 
found himself very indifferent, followed their advice, 
and leaving the command in France to the Duke of 
Devonshire, with orders to prosecute the war with the 
utmost vigour, he left that kingdom, and arrived at 
London the first of September, 1919. 


A.D. 1919-1920. 

Foreign affairs. Spain and Russia intervene in the war. Treaty 
of Madrid. Preparations in Great-Britain. Parliament meets. 
An allied army mobilized in Switzerland. Duke of Devon- 
shire conquers Flanders and Holland. 

GEORGE could not have left France at a more critical 
time. His prodigious successes had kindled the jealousy 
of several of his neighbours, who wished to see the 
rapidity of his conquests stopped. A series of victories 
had raised his character as a commander to an extreme 
high pitch ; he possessed the reputation of not only 
being the greatest General of his time, but even one of 
the most celebrated that ever existed. He was the 
sovereign of a powerful kingdom, and was equally 
formidable, both by sea and land. He had given 
France a terrible blow by one successful battle, and 
bid fair to conquer the whole kingdom in another 
campaign ; these circumstances, at the same time that 
they raised the jealousy of his neighbours, equally 
occasioned a dread of his power : all wished to clip his 
soaring wings, but no one singly dared to attempt it. 
His old enemy, the Czar Peter, was engaged in a 


second war with the Turkish Emperor Bajazet, which 
had been carried on with various success for two cam- 
paigns ; and a late rebellion of the Danes, under Count 
Stormer, had obliged him to divide his land forces. Yet 
engaged as he was, he was ready to come into any 
alliance against the King of Great Britain. Indeed, he 
could no longer be the enemy he formerly proved ; for 
the Russian fleet, as its rise was swift, so its declension 
was rapid ; and powerful as Peter had lately been at 
sea, yet he was now by no means in a condition of 
making any naval opposition of consequence to the 
fleets of England. 

Charles the Fifth, who at this time sat on the throne 
of Spain, was a weak Prince, but governed by the Count 
de Leon, a Minister of great abilities and unbounded 
ambition. From the moment George distinguished 
himself on the continent of Europe, he became his 
enemy professed, and by his intrigues endeavoured to 
unite the whole force of Europe against him. He had 
supplied the late King of France with immense sums of 
money, he had put the whole force of Spain in motion, 
and waited only for a proper opportunity to declare 
openly against the King of Great Britain. Spain was 
in a flourishing condition ; the acquisition of Portugal 
and Brazil was very considerable ; and having been so 
fortunate as to possess a succession of able ministers, 
her revenues were in good order, and her forces well 
disciplined and numerous : she had a fleet of forty sail 
of the line ready manned, besides frigates. 

Italy at this time enjoyed a profound peace, the Kings 
of Sicily and Venice having for some time compromised 


all their disputes. The Emperor Frederick IX. was in 
close alliance with George, and the German Princes 
neutral, but ready to let their troops to whoever would 
hire them. The Swiss cantons was also in friendship 
with Great Britain. 1 

Such was the state of Europe, when the battle of 
Alen^on struck a terror into most of its Sovereigns. 
The Count de Leon had sometime before entered into 
a negotiation with the Czar, to form an alliance against 
George. This battle hastened their proceedings, and 
a treaty was soon agreed on between them, for the pro- 
tection of Philip, and signed at Madrid. Peter engaged 
to join the Spanish fleet with sixty sail of the line, and 
to send ten thousand foot and five thousand horse to 
assist Philip. Spain was to march an army of sixty 
thousand men into France, to act against the English. 
In return, Philip engaged as soon as George was driven 
out of his dominions, to assist Charles with all his forces, 
and to recover Milan from the King of Sicily. 2 The last 
article was secret; but his Sicilian Majesty found means 
to come at the designs of his enemies. The first of 
October the King of Spain declared war against Great 
Britain, and on the ninth he was followed by the Czar. 

George in the mean time was not dilatory in opposing 
both preparations and negotiations against those of his 
enemies. He no sooner arrived in England, than he 
despatched orders to Milford, for a squadron of twenty 
ships of the line, and fourteen frigates, to be equipped 

1 Stephenson, vol. i. p. 63. 

2 [Was this for the benefit of the King of Venice ? Or was 
Spain dreamir of recovering Milan, lost since 1712?] 


with all expedition ; another of ten sail, and eleven 
frigates, at Portsmouth ; twenty line of battle ships, and 
nine frigates, at Hull ; fifteen sail were almost ready for 
sea at Plymouth ; nine at Cork in Ireland, and five at 
Lynn ; in all, seventy-nine sail of the line, besides frigates. 
He had a squadron of fifteen sail off Toulon, under 
Admiral Tonson ; and ten in the Channel, commanded 
by Philips. The Duke of Grafton hasted down to Hull, 
to quicken the preparations for fitting out the grand 
squadron, which was to sail for the Baltic from thence. 
Orders were given for the fleets at Plymouth, Ports- 
mouth, and Lynn, with the squadron in the Channel, 
to rendezvous at Hull, as fast as they were got ready 
for service, that a powerful fleet might sail from thence 
early in the spring, before a Russian one could come out 
of the Baltic. Never were such prodigious preparations 
carryed on in a more spirited manner. New ships were 
building at all the ports of Great-Britain and Ireland, 
and even in the immense colonies of America ; four 
ships of 40 guns each, were on the stocks at Quebeck ; 
ten at Boston, and five at Philadelphia. Nor was the 
King's attention only carried towards his navy ; twenty 
new regiments were raised in Great-Britain, and eight 
in Ireland. All sorts of military preparations went on 
with equal vigour. 

The Parliament meeting in the beginning of winter, 
the session was opened with a very sensible speech from 
the throne, in which his Majesty laid before them the 
state of affairs, both at home and abroad ; he explained 
the necessity of prosecuting the war in the most vigorous 
manner, and repelling all attacks that mig^t be made 



by the members of the alliance which was formed 
against him. There were two parties at this time in 
the Parliament ; the one was for making a peace as soon 
as possible, to avoid a war with all Europe. These urged, 
that the conquests his Majesty had made in France, 
however glorious they might seem, were certainly con- 
trary to the interest of the kingdom, as it would be 
highly absurd to think of keeping them, even if it was 
in our power. This was their chief argument, and the 
Duke of Bedford, who was in disgrace, was at their 
head. But as the opposite party, who were entirely 
guided by the pleasure of the King (so great was his 
reputation, and so universal was the good opinion en- 
tertained of him), were much the strongest, after a few 
debates, it was determined to address his Majesty, and 
to thank him for his design of prosecuting the war with 
vigour ; and before they were prorogued, they granted 
him thirteen millions, every shilling of which was raised 
by taxes within the year, to the surprise of all Europe, 
so extensive was the British trade at this time. 

His Majesty's negotiations were as spirited as his 
military preparations : he sent the Earl of Chesterfield 
as Ambassador to the Emperor Frederick ; the Duke 
of Marlborough to the King of Sicily ; and Mr. Wharton 
to the states of Switzerland. A treaty was soon signed 
between himself, the Emperor, and his Sicilian Majesty, 
in opposition to the alliance. Frederick engaged to 
attack the Russians, if they entered the Empire, and 
George took ten thousand of his men into his pay. The 
King of Sicily furnished him with ten thousand more 
at his own expence, on condition, that they should be 


recalled if that Monarch was attacked himself, and 
that the King of Great Britain should send an army 
of twenty thousand men to his assistance : moreover, 
George hired eight thousand Bavarians, and six thousand 
Swiss infantry. Such were the measures this vigilant 
Monarch took to repulse the attempts of his powerful 

No sooner was these treaties signed, than the ten 
thousand troops furnished by the King of Sicily, marched 
from the neighbourhood of Turin, and crossing the Alps 
near Bornico, 1 joined the Swiss troops, and remained 
ejicamped till the Imperialists and Bavarians arrived, 
when they formed an army of thirty-four thousand men. 
The King sent the Duke of Devonshire orders to detach 
the Earl of Bury with five thousand men, to put himself 
at their head, and lead them into France. This was 
no easy task. Philip, who had recruited his army, and 
was re-inforced with fifteen thousand Spaniards, lay in his 
way to intercept him. Franche Comte", part of Lorraine, 
and Alsace, were in his possession ; so that the road to 
Switzerland was entirely blocked up : but this able 
General, deceived the French King (or rather the 
Marshal Siletta, who had the command) and making 
a flying march, passed by his army, and entered Switzer- 
land in safety. The allied troops were in the neigh- 
bourhood of Zurich : Bury placing himself at their head, 
entered Franche Comte without opposition, for Siletta 

1 [This is an unintelligible march. Does the author mean 
Bormio ? If so, the army followed the Valtellire route. But this 
would be a bad one for reaching Zurich, its ultimate goal. Per- 
haps Giornico is meant, and the St. Gotthgjd line was taken.] 


was too weak, though far superior in numbers, to prevent 
him. Perceiving the weakness of the enemy, Bury 
laid siege to Besangon, expecting an easy conquest : but 
a brave governour commanding in it, he was obliged to 
open the trenches against it. 

In the mean time, his Grace of Devonshire was not 
idle ; he had collected forty thousand men to drive 
Philip from Lyons, and attack that city; but an un- 
foreseen event changed his design. General Sommers, 
who commanded ten thousand men in Hainault, was 
unfortunately surprised in a dark night, by a small body 
of the enemies troops in that province, and the Frenchr 
man pursuing his blow, was attended with some success. 
This affair called off the attention of the Duke from the 
southern parts, and pointed out the necessity of first 
reducing all the northern provinces. Instead therefore 
of marching to Lyons, he moved with his army towards 
Flanders. The French troops, although elated with their 
success, did not dare to stand their ground : their Com- 
mander very prudently gave up all thoughts of keeping 
the field against the Duke, and conjecturing that his 
Grace would not make so long a march, without attempt- 
ing to reduce the country, he divided his troops into 
small parties, and threw them into the strong towns 
in the Flemish provinces. The sea coast was already 
in the hands of the English, quite to Blankenburgh, 
with the whole province of Artois. Devonshire being 
joined by General Sommers and his scattered troops, 
divided his army into two parts ; with one, Sommers 
advanced towards Namur, with design to take that City, 
and afterwards to reduce all the adjacent provinces. 


The Duke at the head of the other, made a flying march 
to Antwerp, and surprised that city. His detachments 
by the way conquered all Dutch Brabant, and Dutch 
Flanders : this country, so famous in history, was 
no longer the strongest spot in Europe ; many of 
that vast list of fortresses, which in the great Marl- 
borough's day, took so much time to master, now 
opened their gates to the Duke of Devonshire on the 
first summons. Having secured the provinces in his 
rear, he advanced into Lie'ge, and coasting along the 
Meuse, took Nimeguen ; nothing now opposed the most 
rapid conquests ; whole provinces were over-run in a 
few days. The French garrisons in Holland were weak 
to the last degree, and the Dutch, whose spirits were 
sunk in their slavery, had no inclination to assist their 
cruel masters. Rotterdam, the Hague, Utrecht, and 
even Amsterdam itself, opened its gates to the con- 
queror. In one word, all the Seven Provinces were 
in the hands of the English by the end of the 
campaign (Dec., igiQ-Jan., 1920). 

General Sommers had no less success in his expedition ; 
Namur surrendered in five days, and Luxemburg, part of 
Champagne, and Lorraine, were immediately conquered. 
This prodigious success, struck a damp into George's 
enemies. While Philip was lieing inactive, and waiting 
for reinforcements, the English had conquered an im- 
mense territory, and were every day extending their 
possessions. The Duke, leaving twenty thousand men 
under Sommers, to take up their quarters in the con- 
quered country, returned with the rest of his army to 
winter in Paris. 


A.D. 1920. 

Naval victories over the Russians. Duke of Lerma marches into 
France. Motions of the British and French armies. 
Celebrated march to St. Flour. Philip arrives at Paris. 
Battle of Espalion. Battle of Paris. The conquest of France. 
Conquest of Mexico. Philippine Islands reduced. Duke 
of Devonshire enters Spain. General peace signed at Paris 
Nov. i, 1920. 

THE enterprising disposition of George, would not 
suffer him to defer opening the campaign the moment 
he was able : in the beginning of April, 1 the Duke 
of Grafton sailed from Hull with sixty ships of the 
line, and thirty-five frigates, to the mouth of the Baltic. 
He soon learned that the Russian fleet was not even 
collected : thirty sail of the line were anchored off 
Stockholm, in expectation of being joined by twenty 
more from Petersburg, when they were to rendezvous at 
Copenhagen, where twenty sail were ready for the sea. 2 
The Duke no sooner gained this intelligence, than he 
immediately entered the Baltic, and steering towards 

1 1920. 

2 [This reads very like the state of affairs in the Baltic in 1801, 
when Nelson made his great stroke, to keep apart the squadrons 
isolated at Stockholm, Cronstadt, and Copenhagen.] 


Stockholm, designed to fall on the Russian fleet before 
they had advice of his approach. He executed his 
scheme with all imaginable success. In a dark night, 
he sent in six fire ships among their squadron. The 
effect was terrible, and fatal to the enemy ; eleven ships 
of the line were burnt, and seven frigates, four sunk, 
and seven taken : the rest were greatly damaged and 
totally dispersed. 

This decisive blow, which at once disabled the 
enemy from appearing at sea during the war, was a 
thunderbolt to Peter, who was then with his army, 
over-running Denmark, which had rebelled against him. 
However, rather to make a parade of power, than in 
hope of retrieving the misfortune, he gave orders that 
the loss should be instantly repaired, and all endeavours 
seemed to be directed to raising his navy. But it was in 
vain : the Duke of Grafton following his blow, sailed 
to Petersburg ; he bombarded the city three days, to 
the utter ruin of every thing but the fortifications : and 
by a bold and well conducted attempt, he landed three 
thousand men to attack the fort that defended the 
bason ; it was carried in a moment ; and this glorious 
expedition ended with burning the whole Russian 
fleet of twenty sail, after a defence, indeed which did 
great honour to the enemies courage. After two such 
decisive strokes, the presence of the duke was no longer 
necessary in the Baltic ; he left it, and setting sail for 
England, anchored at Hull with his victorious fleet. 

The King with his own hand wrote a most friendly 
letter to the Duke, thanking him for his great and 
eminent services, particularly in this signal success. 


He soon after ordered him to sail for the coast of Spain, 
and gave him orders to annoy the enemy in whatever 
manner should seem best to himself; he was limited 
only to the coast of that kingdom. His Majesty before 
he left England, gave orders for a fleet of ten sail of 
the line, and eight frigates, to sail for the West Indies, 
to prosecute the war in that part of the world ; 
they were to convoy transports with three thousand 
infantry on board, who were designed to attack Mexico, 
under General Cannon ; these were to land at New 
Orleans : l the fleet was commanded by Admiral New- 
port. Another squadron was ordered to be got ready 
with all expedition for the East Indies, to attack the 
Spanish possessions in that quarter, under Admiral 
Clinton. The preparations of the King had been 
prodigious ; yet ships were still wanting, and were fitting 
out every day. It was indeed surprising how this 
active Monarch could give his attention equally to 
every object of such a prodigious extensive war. 

Before the Duke of Grafton had destroyed the 
Russian fleet, George was landed in France ; He carried 
with him eight regiments of foot, and three of dragoons, 
who had been but lately raised. He found the Duke of 
Devonshire drawing his troops out of their winter 
quarters, and collecting them near Nevers ; this business 
the King hastened with all expedition, for he designed 
to take the field before the Spanish army under the 
Duke of Lerma had joined Philip ; it consisted of 
fifty thousand men, and was in full march for France. 

1 [An odd place to choose for landing to attack Mexico. But our 
author's geography is not at its best in America."' 


Philip himself had spared no pains to augment his 
troops : he had thro.wn strong garrisons into all his 
fortresses, and his army designed for the field, amounted 
to seventy thousand men ; which he was collecting with 
all expedition. The King of England by the latter end 
of April, found himself at the head of sixty thousand 
conquering troops ; he had besides twenty thousand 
in garrisons, twenty thousand in Flanders under Som- 
mers, and five thousand encamped near Saintes, com- 
manded by General Young, who watched ten thousand 
of Philip's troops, that had been detached to penetrate 
into Orleanois, but without effect. 

Dijon, Macon, and Bourg, were now the only places 
in Burgundy in the possession of the French. George 
detached ten thousand men under General Cleveland, 
to reduce those fortresses, which it was expected would 
prove an easy task, as the two first were cut off from 
all communication with Philip's army ; after performing 
this service, he was to join the King in the neighbour- 
hood of Lyons. His Majesty on the third of May left 
Nevers, and marched to Moulins ; the Governour, du 
Roquet, deserted it at his approach. The King leaving 
a garrison in it, directed his march to Bourbon, with 
design to reduce all the places on the Loire ; and 
joining General Cleveland, lay siege to Lyons, which 
he made no doubt would draw Philip to a battle, as 
the loss of that city would be fatal to his affairs. 1 This 
excellent plan showed the genius of the King, and the 
execution was equal to the design. By a happy expedi- 
tion, which always threw his enemy into confusion, 
1 Du Chanq. torn. VI. p. 47. 


George became master of Digoin, Semeur, Boissy, and a 
strong fort which commanded an important pass at 
Tarare, which opened to him the road to Lyons. General 
Cleveland had met with equal success in his expedi- 
tion. Philip detached two thousand men to oppose 
him, but the English General, by making a flying 
march, deceived him, and conquered the three towns 1 
almost as soon as he had attacked them : having 
thus performed the chief end of his expedition, he 
marched to join his master with little or no opposition ; 
and effected it with as little loss. The French were 
but spectators of their enemy's success. 

The King of France, who was guided in all his 
military operations by Marshall Siletta, was terrified 
at the sudden approach of his victorious enemy. The 
Duke of Lerma had not yet entered France ; he was 
perplexed what course to take. Determined not to 
hazard a battle, he was in great fear of the King's 
attacking Lyons : there was in that city a garrison of 
eight thousand men, yet he depended but little on their 
defence. If he encamped under its walls, he knew it 
would be safe, but then it would be in George's power 
to cut off his junction with the Spanish army. On the 
contrary, if he marched towards Spain to join it, Lyons 
he gave up as lost, and perhaps other places of great 
importance might partake its fate. Thus confused 
between different opinions, he at last was guided by his 
General, who urged him to entrench himself strongly 
under the walls of Lyons ; as George he supposed 
through his impetuosity, would aim at taking him and 
1 Dijon, Macon, and Bourg. 


his army prisoners ; and would neglect to cut off his 
communication with Spain. 

George, whose camp was near Boissy, immediately 
perceived the oversight of the enemy ; he took no time 
to spend in tedious consideration, but seeing that the 
whole fortune of the war depended on his preventing 
the junction of the French and Spaniards, he deter- 
mined to exert every effort to cut off all their communi- 
cations. There was the greater necessity for expedition, 
as the Duke of Lerma had entered France, and was 
arrived at Foix. 1 The scheme was difficult to execute, 
for all the country before him was full of strong towns 
with garrisons in them. His plan was to march to St. 
Flour, but Riom, Clermont, and Issoirre, lay so near his 
road, that it would be extremely difficult to pass, with- 
out reducing them ; without losing a moment's time, 
therefore, he made a flying march to Riom, and present- 
ing himself before it, required the governour to sur- 
render immediately at discretion. Terrified at George's 
approach, he surrendered without firing a gun ; but his 
cowardice however cost him dear, for he was afterwards 
shot for his behaviour, by the command of his master. 
George having thrown a garrison into Riom, marched with 
no less expedition to Clermont, and expected the same 
speedy success ; but the Prince of that name being Lord 
of the town, commanded in it, and returned a haughty 
answer to George. His Majesty immediately surrounded 

1 [An unlikely point for him to appear at, as it would seem that 
he must have crossed the Pyrenees at one of their least accessible 
points in order to reach it. He would really have marched by 
Figueras and Perpignan.] 


the town, and at night about ten o'clock, made three 
violent attacks on it in different quarters. Never was 
action more obstinately fought, but some scaling ladders 
breaking at the principal attack, and the bravery of the 
French throwing his men into confusion, he was obliged 
to draw off his troops with the loss of two thousand five 
hundred men. The King, who expected that Philip 
would march with all expedition to join the Spanish 
army in time, resolved to lose none ; and quitting the 
attack on Clermont, determined, as Riom was in his 
possession, to pass on without it. His Majesty using 
the same expedition, advanced to Issoirre, which to his 
utter astonishment, he found deserted ; pursuing his 
march therefore, he arrived at St Flour, and was hardly 
in sight of the town, before he ordered it to be attacked. 
The fury of this attack, which was made at once in five 
places, only seemed to raise the courage of the 
governour ; but nothing could resist the English : after 
four hours hot action, they carried it by storm. 

This celebrated march, which was one of the most 
expeditious ever known, was performed in eight days ; 
a rapidity that was astonishing. The King, by such 
prodigious celerity, however, prevented the two armies 
of French and Spaniards from joining. He expected 
indeed, that Philip would take a different course as fast 
as possible to effect the junction : but herein he was 
mistaken ; Philip, or rather Siletta, no sooner saw how 
far George had got the start of him, than he perceived 
the extreme difficulty of joining the Spaniards ; and 
knowing that the operation of the whole campaign must 
be greatly retarded by waiting for the Duke of Lerma, 


he determined to make a resolute push, to recover the 
capital, and the northern provinces of his kingdom. The 
attempt must necessarily be attended with great 
difficulty, but he was nevertheless determined in his 

Had it been possible, he would have taken the 
straight road to Paris, but the English possessed a 
multitude of garrisons in his way, that rendered such a 
march impracticable. Therefore breaking up his camp 
with very little noise, he took the route of Bourg, 
designing to make a great detour through Franche 
Comte and Champagne. Bourg surrendered without one 
blow ; from thence he marched with great expedition 
to D61e ; his plan in this march was the same as that of 
George in his southern one ; he determined to leave 
every town behind him that made any great resistance. 
The governour of Dole refused to surrender, and Philip 
despairing of taking it by storm, passed on to Langres : 
the officer who commanded there had not the same 
courage, but left the town an easy conquest to the 
French ; Sezanne gave him as little trouble ; from 
whence, after a very rapid march, he arrived at Paris, 
which was never able to resist an army (May 29, 1920). 

Nothing could raise the spirits of his subjects more 
than this stroke ; he expected to be soon master of 
all the northern provinces, as he depended on the Duke 
of Lerma's finding the King of England employment in 
the south. But we shall leave him here a little while, to 
take a view of the operations between George and the 
Spaniards. The Duke had advanced to Toulouse, and 
hearing that Philip was marching to Paris, he exclaimed 


against this perfidy of the French in the highest terms. 
He reproached them with breaking their engagements, 
as they were to join him, and to act in concert with his 
army. The Spanish minister was no less loud in his com- 
plaints ; but it was too late for Philip to change his plan : 
and the Duke with all possible caution advanced to Tou- 
louse. He knew the genius of the man that commanded 
against him, and was determined to leave nothing to 
fortune ; to hazard no action of consequence, but to 
keep advancing, and find the King of England an 
employment, while Philip was over-running the northern 
provinces. His plan was the most prudent he could 
have chosen, and he had a genius proper to execute it. 
When he arrived at that city, he learnt of George's 
being at Mende, upon which, he still advanced to Alby 
and Rodez, and from the situation of the King, was in 
hopes of being able to make a flying march, and yet 
join Philip. 

But the King of Great Britain knew it was impossible 
for the Duke to take advantage of his motion, from the 
situation of his outposts, the passes of which were all in 
his command. Lerma was at Espalion, and just as his 
army was beginning to move, one of his Aides de Camp 
brought him intelligence, that the King was at Albrac, 
in his front, but four miles from him. Alarmed at this 
news, and dreading a battle, he instantly ordered his 
troops to arms, and they moved forthwith into their 
camp, at the same time receiving orders to raise new 
entrenchments and redoubts. The King had made this 
sudden and rapid motion with design to bring on a 
battle, judging it a favourable opportunity when the 


Spaniards were on the march. However, finding that the 
Duke was taking every precaution that was possible, he 
gave over the design, and the two armies continued in 
the same position a week, during which time George 
was incessantly attacking the out parties and convoys 
of the Duke, and trying to provoke him to a battle ; but 
it was in vain, for the cautious Spaniard kept close in 
his camp, and very quietly saw the King victorious in 
every skirmish. 

But this petite guerre was the King's aversion, though 
he understood it well ; he loved hazardous actions in 
which fortune played a part ; he was tired if a continued 
series of battles, rapid marches, or towns stormed, did 
not succeed quickly to each other ; never more pleased, 
or more calm, than in the midst of all. As may be 
supposed this disposition made him long for an engage- 
ment with the Spaniards, and form a variety of projects 
to bring one about, but knowing the prudent enemy he 
had to deal with, he determined to surprise him by 
night. Previous to the execution of his project, he had 
detached parties to secure all the country round him. 
The Earl of Bury, with twenty thousand men had taken 
Aurillac, Figeac, Cahors, and Ville Franche, so that all 
the country behind him was secure ; and the enemy 
possessed the route by which they advanced. Having 
prepared every thing, by calling in all his detachments, 
the better to deceive the Duke, he gave out, that he 
should march immediately to succour Rouen, which was 
besieged by the French King ; he accordingly provided 
a vast quantity of baggage, ammunition, and artillery 
waggons ; pressed all the horses of the country into his 


service, and in short, gave directions in such a manner, 
that every one fully believed he was on the point of 

When the day came on which he meditated the 
attack, (the 23rd of June) the troops were all directed to 
wait for orders ; and it was expected that the next 
morning they would begin their march ; but about ten 
o'clock they were all drawn up in order of battle ; and 
George dividing them into two bodies, placed one under 
the command of the Duke of Devonshire, and headed 
the other himself; the Duke was to make a little 
detour of a mile and a half, through some woods, which 
led to the Spanish camp, while the King himself took 
the same direction through the plain : both parties were 
to meet and make the attack in concert. Nothing could 
be executed in a better order ; the troops to their great 
surprise, filed off without beat of drum, or sound of 
trumpet ; and by half an hour after eleven arrived at the 
very verge of the enemies camp. 

The King joining his forces, and giving orders to the 
Duke, the Earl of Bury, and General Young, who were 
to command the three attacks, while himself overlooked 
all at the head of a chosen body of troops, directed 
them to advance, with orders not to fire a musket, till 
they were in the midst of the camp. The three 
divisions moved at the same instant, and had advanced 
a considerable way in the camp before they were dis- 
covered, the Spaniards being all asleep in their tents. A 
grenadier attempting to knock down a sentinel, was 
resisted, where upon he fired at him ; and the noise 
immediately roused some contiguous tents, who upon 


this, spread a general alarm, and ran half naked to their 
arms, but found the English advancing to the very 
centre of their camp. They attempted to resist, but were 
broke and dispersed in an instant : the Duke of Lerma 
himself, by this time, was at the head of a confused 
party, and attempting to form them. But five and 
twenty field pieces, which the King had brought with 
him, were placed so advantageously, that every attempt 
of such a nature was ineffectual. The Duke flew like 
lightening through his camp, to bring his men to some 
order ; all the Spanish Generals exerted themselves, but 
their stand was momentary ; terror stalked before the 
English wherever they moved nothing could resist the 
impetuosity of their attacks. All was one scene of horror 
and confusion, the enemy were every where dispersed in 
the utmost disorder about their camp, and cut to 
pieces in regiments. To complete the carnage, the Earl 
of Bury, turning the cannon of three redoubts on the 
flying troops, mowed them down in squadrons. By break 
of day the action was over, the whole Spanish army was 
totally dispersed, with incredible slaughter, and the loss 
of their General, who was killed in the confusion that 
necessarily attended such an action. 

Never was victory more complete ; twenty-two 
thousand Spaniards were killed, and ten thousand 
made prisoners ; all their camp baggage and artillery, 
standards, colours, drums, and other trophies without 
number were taken, besides their military chest. They 
suffered great loss in their retreat, so that out of 
fifty thousand who came out, scarce ten thousand 
returned to their own country. This decisive victory 



was a fatal stroke to Spain, and almost ruined Philip's 
affairs : the news of it was as a thunderbolt to him. 
After gaining so great a victory in such advantageous 
circumstances, and with the most trifling loss, there was 
nothing to stop the rapidity of the King's conquests. 
He divided his army into three divisions, and all 
Languedoc, Provence, Dauphine, Gascogne, Guienne, 
Quercy, Perigord, Limosin, and Saintonge, were con- 
quered ; comprehending near four hundred miles of 
territory. But it is time to take a view of Philip's 
operations, which will exhibit a very different picture. 

He was no sooner master of Paris, than he marched 
into Normandy, and laid siege to Rouen, expecting to 
be master of it in a few days ; but his hopes of such 
speedy success were blasted : for he found the brave 
Governor, General Stanley, returned a haughty answer 
to his demand of surrendering. But as it was absolutely 
necessary that the city should be taken before he 
attempted any thing farther, and as no time was to be 
lost, he opened nine batteries against it at once, in 
expectation of obliging the Governor to surrender by 
the fury of his fire ; but after a week's dreadful 
cannonade, he was not nearer his point than when he 
first began the attack ; with much vexation he was at 
last obliged to open the trenches : and a slow siege 
could not but be fatal to his affairs. Yet he trusted to 
the Duke of Lerma's keeping George engaged till he 
was master of it. In this situation, he continued his 
approaches for some time, but saw little prospect of his 
being able to carry the city. At last advice was brought, 
that the King of England had totally defeated the 


Spaniards, a terrible blow to Philip. He was at first 
struck dumb with surprise ; but recovering himself, 
ordered the siege to be raised immediately, and falling 
back to Paris, entrenched his army under the walls of 
his capital. Every day brought him accounts of whole 
provinces over-run by George, and seeing that his affairs 
were on the brink of ruin, he determined to sue for 
peace, and accordingly sent two ambassadors to the 
British Monarch ; but he was answered, u That it was 
" now too late for a peace That France had been the 

" aggressor in the war and that he must expect 

" no other terms but those his sword procured him." 

His Majesty quickly followed this answer with all his 
forces, he left Rodez in the beginning of July, and moved 
with great expedition towards Paris. 1 In fifteen days he 
reached its neighbourhood, and encamping at Dampierre, 
went immediately to reconnoitre Philip's entrenchments. 
Siletta had done every thing in his power to make them 
as strong as possible ; but their extent rendered them 
weak, although they contained eighty thousand men, 
entrenched to the teeth. George, drawing nearer, 
determined to attack them without delay ; he pointed 
out three places to his Generals, at which to make the 
principal efforts. At one he commanded himself, and 
the Duke of Devonshire, and the Earl of Bury the other 
two. The prodigious boldness of the attempt made 
some advise the King against it ; but his ardent 

1 [The battle of Espalion was fought on June 23rd. The King 
moved on Paris about July 5. How did he find time in ten days 
to conquer Provence, Languedoc, and other remote provinces ? 
The chronology needs recasting.] 


temper made him reject their opinion : it was expected, 
that this action would be one of the bloodiest ever 
fought. The King made the attack at three o'clock in 
the morning of the 24th of July, but it could be hardly 
called a battle. In half an hour, the whole French army 
gave way : dispirited by so many defeats, and engaging 
in expectation of being conquered, instead of fighting 
like men, they fled like sheep. Philip, with the Dauphin 
his brother on one side of him, and Siletta on the other, 
attempted to rally his men, but it was impossible, and 
in the flight he was taken prisoner by the Earl of Bury, 
to whom he delivered his sword : the Dauphin was also 
taken, and Marshal Siletta. The loss of the French 
amounted to about fifteen thousand men, in killed and 
prisoners, and the whole army was totally dispersed. 

This victory threw the whole kingdom of France 
into George's possession ; he had now no long marches 
to make, his enemy had no resource. All was lost. 
From the frontiers of Spain, to the extremities of 
Holland, the whole territory was in his hands. The 
King of Spain, or rather his haughty minister, was 
seized with terror ; they repented having provoked a 
Prince, whom they were in fear would take a severe 
revenge. All Europe trembled at the name of George ; 
and it was next to evident, that he was now become 
invincible. But the same success attended his arms in 
the remotest corners of the world. 

We before mentioned the Duke of Grafton's sailing 
with his victorious fleet to the coast of Spain ; his Grace's 
actions on that station were not so brilliant as those in 
the Baltic, but almost equally ruinous to the Spaniards. 


Too weak to face the English squadron, the Spanish 
fleet kept in port. Thirty sail of the line, besides 
frigates and other ships, were at anchor in the harbour 
of Cadiz. The Duke, rinding there was no probability of 
the enemy's venturing out, formed the design of attack- 
ing the forts of the city, and burning the Spanish fleet. 
There was a vastness in all this nobleman's schemes, that 
showed a great and daring genius. During the reign of 
George III. Admirals watched the fleets of their 
enemies, and spent whole months ineffectually, and yet 
that was a brilliant period. But now in the age of 
George VI. the British Admirals did not watch, but 
force the ports of their enemies. The Duke executed 
his plan with great success ; with the loss of only one 
ship, he burnt nine sail of the line, fifteen frigates, and 
sixty-four merchantmen. He then entered the Straits, 
and falling in with a small Spanish squadron, going 
from Alicant to Gibraltar, 1 to take in their guns, he took 
four sail of the line, and three frigates, dispersing the 

In the West Indies, Admiral Newport met with yet 
greater successes : having landed General Cannon and 
his men at New Orleans, he sailed to the island of Cuba, 
and without any assistance reduced it. That immense 
island once more 2 came under the dominion of Great- 
Britain, and with it a prodigious sugar trade. The 

1 [Gibraltar, then, was no longer in British hands, but a Spanish 
arsenal. Presumably it had been lost during the unfortunate wars 
of George V.] 

2 [Havana had been in our hands in 1762, at the end of the 
Seven Years' War, but was surrendered at the peace of 1763.] 


General having collected the troops of the colony of 
Louisiana, to the amount of fifteen thousand men, 
began a very long march towards Mexico. 1 But as the 
country through which he proceeded was tolerably well 
cultivated, and having the advantage of conveying his 
artillery, &c. by several noble rivers, 2 he soon entered 
the Spanish Colonies ; where the weakness of their 
government was very visible ; he met with no resistance, 
but proceeding on his march, he arrived at the opulent 
city of Mexico. It surrendered on the first summons, 
and in three months he conquered the whole country, 
together with the isthmus, across from La Vera Cruz to 
Acapulco. Nothing could be more fatal to the Spaniards 
than the loss of these immense regions : the trade of 
them was a great and valuable increase to that of Great 
Britain ; but these operations were performed in concert 

with another in the East Indies. The end of Admiral 

Clinton's expedition was the conquest of the Philippine 
Islands. This fleet being rendezvoused at Batavia, was 
joined by fifteen sail of the line of the Company's ships, 3 
and ten thousand of their land forces. They proceeded 
immediately for the object of their enterprise : so great a 
force in that part of the world could meet with little or 

1 [An incredible way of invading Mexico. Any invader with 
possession of the sea would have landed at Vera Cruz, as did the 
Americans in 1846.] 

2 [It is difficult to see how the Rio Grande or any other stream 
would thus help a force marching on Mexico. All the great rivers 
run across, not parallel to, the invaders' road.] 

3 [The East India Company, then, was still in full existence in 
1920, and Batavia was English. Presumably we had taken the 
Dutch East Indies when the French conquered Holland.] 


no resistance ; Manilla was taken after an attack of two 
hours, and all the islands were successively reduced to 
obedience. The government of them his Majesty 
entrusted to the Company. The accession of wealth was 
immense, since these distant conquests concurred to 
command a vast and open trade, which was carried on, 
almost immediately, from Acapulco to Manilla. In 
short, all the riches of the Spaniards, or their most 
valuable riches, their trade, (for the mines of Mexico 
were exhausted long before) 1 fell into the hands of the 
English. But events were happening in Europe, which 
drew the attention of all the world. 

The King of Great-Britain, no longer seeing an enemy 
in the field, entered Paris with great pomp, and placed 
his head quarters in the Louvre. He sent the Duke of 
Devonshire at the head of forty thousand men to attack 
Spain, and distributed thirty thousand more in garrisons 
throughout France ; the remainder of his army, which 
amounted to thirty-two thousand, was part encamped 
in the neighbourhood of Paris, and part distributed in 
that city ; he had besides, twenty thousand more in 
Holland, under General Sommers. He left this army in 
the same position, on account of the neighbourhood of 
the Russians. The Czar Peter was yet engaged in a 
skirmishing tedious war, with small parties of the 
Danes, whom he found it impossible to quell at once. 
Besides, he could use but a small part of his power, for 
he was at war with the Turks, and finding so much 
business on his hands, was utterly unable to attack 
1 [In 1898 they still gave 70 per cent, of Mexico's total exports.] 


The Duke of Devonshire had no sooner passed the 
Appenines, 1 than he broke into Catalonia, and over- 
running the whole province, sat down before Barcelona. 
All Spain was alarmed : terrified at the attack, the 
haughty minister himself saw the immediate necessity 
of appeasing George. He sent Ambassadors to Paris, 
to sue for peace, who met with no very favourable 
reception. They made many proposals, which the King 
rejected ; at last, George in a memorial, informed their 
court, that he would make peace on no other terms than 
the following : i. That the King of Spain shall cede all 
the conquests of the English in the East and West- 
Indies to Great-Britain, as an indemnification for the 
expences of the war. 2 2. That the King of Spain shall 
acknowledge the King of Great Britain as King of France. 
3. That the King of Great-Britain shall relinquish his 
conquests in Catalonia, in consideration of the King 
of Spain's ceding the island of Sardinia 3 to Philip of 
France, which he shall enjoy for ever, with the title of 
King. For some time the Court of Madrid refused to 
accede to these conditions, but finding the King's deter- 
mination fixed, and Barcelona in the Duke of Devon- 
shire's possession, and dreading to see George at the 
head of his army in Spain, they at last agreed to them. 
The Czar Peter and Philip were both invited to accede to 
the treaty, and the latter had his liberty promised him, 

1 [A curious slip for the Pyrenees.] 

- [This would leave Spain South America, but no other part of 
her colonial empire.] 

3 [How and when Sardinia had become Spanish we cannot tell. 
Presumably when the Sicilians overran Italy.] 


and the island of Sardinia if he did. The difference that 
subsisted between Great Britain and Russia did not 
prove the least obstacle, and Philip, tired out with ill 
fortune, and seeing the impossibility of recovering either 
his kingdom or his liberty, agreed to the conditions 
prescribed by George. An English fleet wafted him, 
his brother, and many of the French nobility to the 
island of Sardinia, which he took possession of. The 
King of Great-Britain generously made him a present 
of fifty thousand pounds to settle his court, and treated 
him during his captivity, with all the politeness imagin- 
able. The peace was no 'sooner signed, than it was 
proclaimed at London and Paris, and his Majesty was 
crowned King of France, at Rheims, the i6th of Novem- 
ber, 1920, before an immense concourse of British and 
French nobility, &c. After leaving the Duke of Devon- 
shire to command in that kingdom, in December he 
embarked at Calais, and arrived in England. 


A.D. 1921-1922. 

State of the kingdom. The parliament meets. Arts, sciences, and 
literature. Academy of Literature. University. Gardens of 
Stanley. Public Works. Manufactures. Prosperity of the 
American colonies. 

AFTER such great fatigue as the King had suffered in 
the last campaign, it may be supposed that he longed 
to enjoy a situation of peace and tranquillity. And it is 
very remarkable that no man ever knew better how to 
taste the hurry and noise of war, or the ease of retire- 
ment. He was equally calculated for both. But he 
was too good a politician to disarm himself as soon as 
the peace was signed a conduct which has often been 
fatal to conquerors. Never were measures taken with 
greater prudence, to secure possession of the kingdom 
he had conquered. He knew that all Europe looked at 
his victories with the utmost jealousy, and sickened at 
the verdure of his laurels : he was fully persuaded, that 
the late peace had only given time to his enemies to 
prepare more effectually for a fresh war : the Spanish 
Monarch, at once inveterate and formidable, he foresaw 
would aim at a second alliance against him. There- 
fore as his situation was so critical, he determined to 


leave as little as possible to chance, but to keep himself 
always ready for action. This plan was most easily 
executed ; for although Great. Britain still felt the burthen 
of a prodigious National Debt, yet the parliament granted 
him very ample supplies, both to carry on the war 
in France, and to build new ships, repair others, to 
sink docks, and make harbours. The King's designs on 
France, indeed, had raised some heats in the House of 
Commons, but these were all blown over : the vast 
splendor of success reconciled every mind to the 
measure ; and what had no little influence was, the 
oeconomy of the King ; they found, that the supplies 
they granted were applied with the utmost fidelity to 
the uses they were intended. They expected at the 
opening of the session, after their congratulatory 
addresses were past, to have many demands for securing 
the vast conquests which the King had made ; but 
they were much surprised, when they found none 
made. The Lord High Treasurer informed them, by 
the King's order, that the establishment in France 
would fully support itself, and pay off all the arrears 
of the army ; this was most agreeable news to all who 
feared the immense expence of keeping that kingdom. 
Only forty thousand men were voted, therefore, as the 
standing troops of Great-Britain ; and ten thousand in 
Ireland ; thirty thousand seamen were demanded, and 
agreed to without opposition ; and five thousand in 
Ireland. The other services were all supplied with ease, 
chearfulness and alacrity. 

But there was one circumstance which pleased the 
King in this, as in some other sessions its meeting at 


Stanley ; where he had summoned them. He there 
found himself in the midst of his own creation ; and was 
never so well pleased, as when he was engaged in raising 
noble piles of architecture, in conversing with men of 
genius, and planning future establishments in favour of 
the arts and sciences. Had the other Princes of Europe 
been possessed of such a philosophic disposition, George 
would never have attacked his neighbours ; he was far 
more pleased to be at the head of an academy at Stanley, 
than of a victorious army, conquering a great kingdom. 
Four years were now l elapsed since George had been 
able to attend to his buildings at this noble city with 
that care and oversight which he desired. His residence 
there was but by snatches ; he now and then caught 
a month flying, but the city was much enlarged in his 
absence. He had entrusted the management of the 
buildings to Gilbert ; but every one who built houses, 
was left at liberty in every point but the front. The 
side of every street formed a regular one, and fancy 
itself could not form an idea of any thing more truly 
magnificent than all the streets of Stanley : they ex- 
hibited all that was great and elegant, with the utmost 
variety that genius could invent ; and as this superb 
city was evidently become the metropolis of the three, 
or rather four, kingdoms, 'the streets increased pro- 
digiously : most of the nobility and gentry spent their 
winters at Stanley, the seat of every thing that could 
charm the wise, the rich, and the luxurious. London 
was already degenerated into a mere trading capital ; 
and the King was every day planning the removal of 

1 1921. 


those offices, which it was in his power to transport to 
his favourite city. 

His Majesty ordered Comins, the architect, to draw 
the plan of an edifice designed for the Chancery : that 
ingenious designer brought him the sketch of the build- 
ing as it now remains ; but it was not equal to some 
other works at Stanley, nor indeed to several churches 
of Comins's raising, in which he was peculiarly excel- 
lentYet the Chancery is a very noble building, and 
does honour to its author. It contains immense apart- 
ments for the several courts of law. But the grand 
design, which drew the attention of the whole kingdom, 
was the cathedral of St. John, now building under the 
care of Gilbert; that great man, whose invention perhaps N < 
was never exceeded, was indebted to nothing but his 
imagination for the design of that astonishing edifice. 
Its architecture, grandeur, and extent, far exceeds St. 
Peter's at Rome, and it is certainly one of the greatest 
monuments of George's magnificence, and even a wonder 
of the world. In the year 1921, Stanley, besides this 
superb cathedral, contained forty-three parish churches, 
many of them famous over the whole world for their 
architecture. The city had grown to be four miles in 
length, and near as much in breadth. 

Among those glorious establishments, which reflect 
so bright a lustre on the reign of this great King, one 
of the most distinguished was the Academy of Polite 
Learning. It was certainly very wonderful that all the 
kingdoms in Europe should have their academies near 
four centuries before Great-Britain, but George supplied 
the want of every thing that reflected an honour on his 


country. This noble institution consisted of a president, 
and of a number of members which was not fixed. The 
former had two thousand pounds a year, and the latter 
three hundred each. The first creation was of twenty- 
three members : and perhaps no period of time can 
display a brighter union of geniuses. The most dis- 
tinguished were, How, whose essays, letters, discourses, 
and poetical pieces, gained him such a great reputation 
both for his learning and genius ; he was the president. 
Reynolds, whose tragedies are so famous. Young, the 
comic writer. Price, the author of our British epic. 
Minors, Wilson, and Philipson, all wrote both admirable 
tragedies and comedies, Walpole, whose sketches on 
many subjects are so elegant and pleasing Grouse, 
Charlton, and Earle, in history : Charlton's History of 
Britain was perhaps never exceeded. But it would be 
tedious to name all their celebrated works, which are 
now in every body's hands. Never was any institution 
better calculated for refining the English language, or 
for promoting literature in all its branches. The prizes 
which were every year given for the best tragedies, 
comedies, and essays, on a variety of subjects, at the 
same time that they raised a spirit of emulation, were 
a means of enriching the votaries of genius. 

George was solely bent on rendering the city of 
Stanley the seat of every thing that was either useful 
or elegant ; the Duke of Suffolk, his favourite Minister, 
hinted to him one day in conversation, the foundation 
of a university. The King considered of the scheme, 
and liking a plan that would adorn the city with so 
many noble buildings as the colleges, determined at 


last to put it in execution. The Academy of Architecture 
furnished plans, and the King gave each member a 
noble opportunity of rivalling each other. The author 
of each plan that was approved, was permitted by the 
King to be the architect. Nothing could excel the 
magnificent establishments which were made in favour 
of this new university. The professors, masters, &c. 
were all appointed with the utmost consideration ; none 
but men of unblemished morals, and great learning, 
were advanced to any posts in it. Scholars, not only 
from all parts of the King's dominions, but from all 
Europe, flocked to be admitted in the university of 
Stanley, which had many advantages, that could be 
enjoyed by no other. What still increased their ardour 
was its ceconomy : the bounty of the King made 
it one of the cheapest seminaries for the education of 
youth, in the world. No plan could have ornamented 
Stanley with a greater number of noble edifices : all 
the colleges, but particularly St. George's, are admirable, 
and perhaps the world cannot boast such a number of 
buildings, with so few faults. St. John's is the worst ; 
but St. George's, of which Gilbert was the architect, is 
inferior to no edifice of its kind in the world. 

But while these celebrated piles of magnificence were 
raising, the King was employed some part of his time 
in laying out the gardens of his palace ; he neglected 
any such additions for some years, the woods which 
almost surrounded him were of themselves so beauti- 
ful. But at last he formed the scheme of sketching 
gardens equal to his palace : he drew several plans 
himself; these amusements and employments were 


worthy such a Monarch as George, and no man could 
succeed in them better. Behind the palace, the vast 
woods of oak and beech, almost joined the building. 
The King laid out a grass lawn, to the back front, 
half a mile long, and a quarter broad, and round 
it to a considerable distance, made it beautifully 
picturesque. The appearance of art was entirely banished ; 
nature was never forced, but assisted : he dug an 
immense piece of water, of one hundred acres, and 
raised a mountain by it, which is certainly one of the 
most beautiful spots in the world. By means of a pro- 
digious quantity of masonry, he formed many precipices, 
which in some places, almost hung over the water ; 
these were covered with mould to a great depth, and 
the whole hill presented the view of one beautiful hang- 
ing wood of beech, here and there adorned with a little 
temple or spire, peeping just above the trees ; which 
made the whole most bea^tifullyLromantic. From off the 
hill was seen, at some distance, a noble prospect, and 
you looked down on the lake, surrounded with woods 
and lawns. Nothing unnatural was seen throughout 
the whole garden : no studied magnificence : very few 
fountains, but many cascades, which tumbling down 
artificial rocks, lost themselves in meandering currents, 
through the embrowning shades. In this beautiful gar- 
den, there was scarcely one straight walk, except the 
grand lawn above mentioned : every thing was irregular 
and natural. In many places sheep, and other cattle 
were feeding ; and as many foreign birds, and harmless 
beasts as possible were procured to run about the 
woods, which were full of hares, rabbits, and pheasants. 


In short, this garden, which may be considered as a 
work of eminent genius, was formed on the mere plan 
of guiding nature : the grass was almost every where 
kept in excellent order ; but the woods had no other 
improvement but the intermixing of the most beautiful 
flowering shrubs irregularly among the trees ; and 
instead of letting the surface be generally flat, hills i 
and a thousand imperceptible variations were made | 
to render it more pleasing. The water naturally ran 
in one channel, but the King threw it into many, and it 
fell down a variety of cascades ; but all without any 
appearance of art. Never was any thing on the whole 
more beautiful, or more truly picturesque ; these gardens, 
which were about five miles in circuit, may be considered 
as the finest in the world, and far beyond those cele- 
brated ones of Versailles, of which historians speak so 

But it was at the same time highly to this great 
King's honour that his amusements did not enroach on 
his more important occupations. George was not only 
magnificent but humane ; his attention to those estab- 
lishments that only advanced the national glory, did 
not call him off from such as were dictated merely by 
his benevolence and humanity. The unhappy found in 
him their best comforter ; the poor and needy their surest 
support. At the time that he was raising palaces, and 
founding academies, hospitals of all kinds were reared 
with liberality and magnificence throughout the king- 
dom : the scheme and execution of the county hospitals 
were the effects of his goodness, nay, the very plan was 
his own thought. Whatever county would raise half the 



necessary sum for any of those seminaries of the poor 
or miserable, the King granted the other half. Happy 
nation ! to have such amiable qualities mixt with the more 
dazzling brightness of their Monarch's mind ! Twenty 
foundling hospitals were erected at his sole expence, 
in different parts of Great-Britain and Ireland : the 
hint of these useful foundations, was taken from one 
that was established for a few years in the reign of 
George II. but it came to nothing, for want of proper 
care : however, those raised by the King, proved to 
be, and now continue, most excellent establish- 
ments. Before the year 1925, his Majesty had built, 
and either wholely, or in part, endowed thirty-five 

Nothing was omitted by George that added to the 
strength and security of his kingdom, which he con- 
sidered equally with its ornament. Vast works were 
raised at all the sea-port towns in Great-Britain and 
Ireland, to defend the coast from all insult. Docks 
for building ships were made at every place where there 
was a sufficient depth of water : new men of war were 
constantly building in them, and old ones repairing ; so 
that he was at all times prepared to wage war on any 
sudden emergency. Vast arsenals and magazines were 
erected at all the most distinguished harbours ; Plymouth, 
Milford, Chatham, Hull, Edinburgh, 1 and Cork, might 
separately be considered as real wonders of strength and 
greatness : each of them was capable of fitting out a 
greater fleet than any single kingdom in the world : 

1 [This does not argue much topographical kno\vledge of the 
Scottish capital ! But Leith is no doubt meant.] 


besides these, there were many ports of less consequence, 
for the building and rendezvous of small men of war 
and frigates : the coasts of the two islands were almost 
entirely surrounded with works which were at once 
their ornament and defence. 

Rivers that formerly were almost useless were now 
navigated by large barges, which increased the trade 
of innumerable towns, and raised in many places new 
ones. Canals were cut, which joined rivers and formed 
a communication from one part of the kingdom to the 
other : the spirit of trade attended these prodigious 
works : villages grew into towns, and towns became 
cities. An infinite number of manufactures flourished 
all over the kingdom ; none were so inconsiderable, as 
not to enjoy the King's patronage, who examined into 
the minutest branches, and by the vast, and penetrating 
capacity of his genius, attained a full comprehension of 
most arts ; he understood their interests, and knew 
when and how to promote them. By these means, he 
raised and supported them at a small expence ; and did 
as much real service to trade with one hundred thousand 
pounds, as many Princes, and even great ones, have 
performed with treble the sum. 

But the immense region of country which the English 
possessed in North America, was what most extended 
and forwarded the British manufactures. The Kin^ 


was there sovereign of a tract of much greater extent 
than all Europe. The constitution of the several divisions 
of that vast monarchy was admirably designed to keep 
the whole in continual dependance on the mother 
country. There were eleven millions of souls in the 


British American dominions in the year 1920 : l they 
were in possession of perhaps the finest country in the 
world, and yet had never made the least attempt to 
shake off the authority of Great Britain. Indeed, the 
multiplicity of governments which prevailed over the 

whole country the various constitutions of them, 

rendered the execution of such a scheme absolutely 
impossible. 2 This wide extended region which increased 
its people so surprisingly fast, was far from being for- 
got by the King ; many noble harbours were surrounded 
with towns, and made naval magazines ; a prodigious 
number of ships were built by order from Great 
Britain ; and the royal navy itself boasted many very 
fine vessels that were launched in America. 

In a word, this was the Augustan age of Great 
Britain : the fictitious times which received their being 
only from the imagination of poets, were realized in 
this happy country. It seldom or never happens that 
a period in which military glory is carried to its greatest 
height, is also the age of happiness and plenty ; but 
this was the case in the reign of George VI. Britain, 
at this golden aera, was at once glorious and happy. 

1 [In 1899 the population of Canada and the United States is 
about 75,000,000.] 

- [Sad words to read when we consider that the colonies were to 
be goaded into revolt within fifteen years, and to be an independent 
state ere twenty had elapsed.] 


A.D. 1922-1925. 

George VI. visits France. Government in France. New laws. 
Buildings. Encouragement of arts and sciences. George 
gives both freedom and happiness to France. Finis. 

A TRULY benevolent disposition knows no bounds to 
the desire of diffusing happiness : George VI. longed 
to see France in possession of that ease and plenty 
which were now the distinguished characteristics of 
Great-Britain. The Duke of Devonshire, it is true, had 
governed in that kingdom with abilities and integrity, 
but it was not in his power to execute the designs of 
the King, nor was his genius adapted to the business. 
His Majesty determined therefore to make a trip 
thither ; and to increase the splendour of his court, he 
took with him great part of the nobility of the king- 
dom. On his arrival at Paris, he fixed his residence at 
the Louvre, but was disappointed in finding that very 
few of the first nobility of France waited on him : his 
court was crowded with Frenchmen, but not men of 
great importance. George could not condemn this 
mark of their affection for their former sovereign ; but 
like a wise and benevolent Prince, resolved to conquer 
their disaffection by his clemency and the mildness of 
his government. 


The Kings of France had been absolute Monarchs for 
many centuries : the parliament of Paris had formerly 
raised commotions in the kingdom, by their obstinacy in 
refusing to register the royal edicts ; but this appearance 
of liberty was now entirely at an end. George determined 
to make the French love him ; and he knew that would 
be impossible, if he did not give them more happiness 
than his predecessors, and make them no longer regret 
the loss of their former Kings. His management in 
France was certainly admirable : at the same time that 
he secured himself against all insurrections, he gratified 
the conquered people. He raised many French regi- 
ments ; he promoted a multitude of French officers in 
English and German corps ; he made a mixture of the 
two nations, in almost every thing except religion ; but 
he never shocked the people with any innovations in 
that tender point. He had, indeed, long laid the plan 
of rooting superstition and enthusiasm out of the king- 
dom, but never thought of changing the established 
religion. By an edict, which was registered in parlia- 
ment, he gave all his French subjects the privilege of 
both reading and publishing any books, with the same 
limitations as in England : this edict contained the 
substance of the English laws on that head, and was 

declared irrevocable. It is difficult to conceive the 

effect which this change had at Paris. A sullen silence 
had reigned throughout the kingdom ; but almost at 
once, it was succeeded by a boundless torrent of flattery 
and invective. The King looked on with calmness, and 
was highly satisfied at the pleasure the whole nation 
experienced in this new liberty. A multitude of in- 


direct libels on him were printed ; but many ingenious 
men defended George, and gave him excessive praise 
for this instance of his clemency, and philosophic dis- 
position. The lower people were shocked at the great 
number of books that swarmed from the press, which 
ridiculed and subverted the Roman Catholic religion ; 
but the sensible part of the nation rejoiced to find that 
no subject was so sacred as to bar common sense from 
the consideration of it : every man published his senti- 
ments with the utmost freedom on all subjects. The 
King, who had a sublime notion of morals and religion, 
ordered a vast number of the best English books to 
be translated into French, and printed at the Louvre : 
these spread with the other publications over all 
France, opened the eyes of the more sensible, and even 
awakened some of the ignorant to a sense of the 
absurdities of popery. The Abbe de Mansiere, par- 
ticularly, by his Majesty's directions, composed a most 
elaborate dissertation to prove that monasteries and 
nunneries were most pernicious to the state : the King 
seemed an enemy to no part of religion, but that 
which was prejudicial to the civil state of the kingdom. 
This noble freedom, which the French had so long 
lost, gave rise to a thousand useful and excellent 
treatises, both in morals and politics : all other arts 
were also benefited by it. But it was not in this article 
alone that George showed his desire of making the 
conquered nation happy: by an edict, which will be 
immortal, he introduced the laws of England into France, 
with no changes, but such as respected religion and 
his own authority. He even gave up every prerogative 


which he did not possess in England, except the raising 
of money : parting with that would have been danger- 
ous, so soon after his possession. As the French nation 
had always preserved a notion of liberty, and had never 
fallen absolutely into slavery, the effect of these changes 
was surprising ; they seemed to enjoy them with par- 
ticular exultation, as they came from the hand of their 
conqueror ; happy for France, that it was conquered by 
such a patriot King ! 

The only set of men who at first appeared dis- 
contented with these changes was the nobility ; they 
were no longer the absolute Lords on their own 
estates they had heretofore been : the meanest peasant 
was now free, and could not suffer but by judgement 
of his peers. But, in return for the loss of that power 
which it was dishonourable to use, they had many 
noble privileges confirmed to them, unknown to their 
ancestors : they were no longer the slaves of their 
Monarch, and the first to bear his fury ; the King him- 
self had no more authority over them, than over the 
lowest mechanic. How unusual was it in France, to 
see uncorrupt judges going the circuits of the provinces, 
who enjoyed their salaries fixed for life, and had no 
inducement to favour either side ! 

During this residence in France, so happy for that 
kingdom, the King built a very noble palace at Fontaine- 
bleau, 1 and another on the banks of the Rhone ; he also 
repaired the Louvre, and many other public buildings ; 
and neglected nothing that could add to the ornament of 

1 [Apparently our author is ignorant of the " very noble palace " 
already existing there since the time of Francis I.] 


the kingdom. The fortifications of the frontier towns, 
from the north of Holland to the Mediterranean, which 
had in many provinces fallen into decay, were repaired, 
and even augmented. The royal ports were filled with 
workmen of all sorts : great numbers of ships, from 
men of war to merchantmen, were built : his Majesty's 
navy was continually augmenting ; and as the two 
nations now possessed an immense trade, there was no 
danger of ever finding a scarcity of sailors. 

The Monarch, who in England had been so great 
and magnificent a protector of the arts and sciences, acted 
worthy of himself in France. The French nation had 
enjoyed more establishments in favour of literature, such 
as academies, than Great-Britain ; but they were in 
general only honourary : men of the greatest genius were 
often members of many academies, but almost starving 
for want. George therefore found no want of fresh 
establishments, but only the fixing certain salaries on 
the seats of those already in being. This he did with 
a liberality unknown in France, and greatly to his 
honour : few conquerors were ever celebrated for such 
excellencies as this great Monarch ; the panegyrics on 
him, which were numerous and just, did not turn on 
his victories, but his philosophic disposition, and his 
civil virtues. 

Prejudice and partiality which so often throw a 
veil over the real characters of princes can find few 
faults with this great king's administration. His con- 
duct, especially in France, has been blamed by many 
politicians, but no philosophers. In fact, George ought 
rather to be considered as a philosophical king, than 



army in France, 49, 50, 53- 
57, 61, 67-69 ; in Spain, 80, 
3, 88 ; regent of France, 89 
Dunkirk captured by British, 27 
Durham sacked by the Russians, 

EAST India Company, aids in the 

conquest of Manilla, 86 
Espalion, battle of, 78-82 


FLEET, development of the British, 
24, 65, 98 

France, alliance of, with Russia, 
II ; declares war on Britain, 
25 ; disasters of, 26-29 ; makes 
peace of Beauvais, 29, 30 ; war 
of, with Germany, 44; renewed 
war of George VI. with, 49, 50, 
51-61, 67, 69, 72-77, 83, 84; 
conquered by George VI., 87, 89; 
government of, under George 
VI., 100-106 

Frederic IX., Emperor of Germany, 
his character, 10 ; war of, with 
France and Russia, 43-45 ; 
aided by George VI., 45-48 ; his 
alliance with George VI., 66 

Freedom of the Press established 
in France, 102, 103 


GEORGE III., reign of, 2 

George IV., reign of, 3 

George V., reign of, 3-4 

George VI., accession of, 5 ; his 
war with Russia, 12-30 ; his 
action in Parliament, 16, 17; 
takes command of the army, 
18 wins battle of Wetherby, 

21 takes command of the fleet, 

22 .wins naval victory, 23; 
invades Flanders, 26 ; wins 

battle of Winox, 26 ; invades 
France, 27-29 ; makes peace 
with France and Russia, 29, 
30 ; literary and artistic tastes 
f > 34, 37, 39, 42 ; his palace of 
Stanley, 35, 95 ; aids Germany 
against France and Russia, 46 ; 
wins battle of Vienna, 47; enters 
Paris, 49 ; defeats King Charles 
X., 50 ; defeated and wounded 
at Orleans, 52 ; wins battle of 
Alencon, 56-59 ; enters Paris, 
59 ; renewed war of, against 
Russia and Spain, 64 ; his treaty 
with Germany, Sicily, and 
Switzerland, 66 ; leads army in 
France, 72, 73 ; victorious over 
Spaniards, 81 ; again enters Paris, 
87 ; crowned King of France, 
89 ; peaceful occupations of, 90, 
100 ; his government of France, 
101-105 > reflections on his 
character and institutions, 105, 

Germany, war of, with France and 
Russia, 44-48 ; alliance of, with 
Britain, 66. 

Gilbert, architect, 35-39, 92, 93 
Grafton, duke of, naval defeat of, 
13, 14 ; naval victory of, 29 ; 
victorious over Russians, 70, 
71 ; over Spaniards, 84, 85 


HAVANA captured by the British, 

Holland, oppressed by the French, 

26 ; conquered by the British, 

Hospitals, establishment of Royal, 


How, president of the Academy 
of Letters, 94 

ITALY, internal condition of, II, 
49, 63, 67 



LAW courts moved to Stanley, 93 
Leon, Count of, Spanish prime 

minister, 63, 64, 88 
Lerma, Duke of, leads Spanish 

army against. George VI., 72, 

75 77 J defeated and slain at 

Espalion, 81 
Literature. See Academy of 


Lutzen, Germans defeated at, 44 
Lyons, operations round, 73, 74 


MADRID, treaty of, 64 

Manilla conquered by Admiral 

Clinton, 86 
Mansiere, the Abbe, French 

author, 103 
Mexico conquered by General 

Cannon, 86 
Moor, British architect, 36 

NATIONAL Debt, increased under 
George V., 3; under George 
VJ., 8 ; conversion of the, 31 

Navy, the, of Britain, 4 ; achieve- 
ments of, under George VI., 12, 
15, 1 8, 22, 23, 25, 29, 65, 70, 
72, 85, 86 

Newport, Admiral, his successes 
in the West Indies, 72, 83 

Nicholson, Sir J., painter, 40 

North American Colonies, pros- 
perity of, 99, 100 


ORLEANS, siege of, 51 ; battle of, 

PARIS, taken by .George VI., 49 ; 
recovered by French, 77 ; lines 
of, stormed, 84 ; treaty of, 88 

Parliament, factious conduct of 
the, 1 6, 17; overawed by the 
king, 17 ; votes the conversion 
of the National Debt, 31 ; meets 
at Stanley, 38 ; session of, 1919, 
65, 66 ; of 1921, 91, 92 

Peter IV. of Russia, his martial 
renown, 9 ; makes war on 
England, 3, 13-19, 29, 30 ; on 
Turkey, 28, 63 j against 
Germany, 44; defeated at 
Vienna, 47 ; signs treaty of 
Madrid, 64; naval disasters 
of, 71 

Petersburg, St., bombarded by 
the British fleet, 71 

Philigroff, Russian admiral, 13 

Philip VII., King of France, 59 ; 
military operations of, 59-88 ; 
recovers Paris, 77; defeated 
and captured, 84 ; deposed, 88 ; 
becomes King of Sardinia, 89 

Pine, British Poet, 42 

Portugal conquered by Spain, 1 1, 


REYNOLDS, British poet, 42, 94 

Rouen, siege of, 82 

Russia, war of George V. with, 
3 ; vast empire of, 9 ; war of, 
with Britain, 13-30 ; wars of, 
with Turkey, 28, 63 ; war of, 
with England, 64-71 

SARDINIA given to Philip VII., 

Saxony, Duke of, German general, 

his victory at Augsburg, 44 ; 

defeat and death of at Lutzen, 

Schmettau, Russian general, 13 ; 

invades England, 15, 19 ; 

defeated and slain at Wetherby, 

20, 21 



Senetraire, Marquis de, defeated 
at Arleux, 55 

Sicily, kingdom of, II, 63, 64; 
alliance of, with Britain, 66 

Siletta, Marshal de, commands 
French army, 67, 74, 76, 84 

Sommers, English general, at 
Wetherby, 21 ; wins battle of 
Arleux, 55 ; in Hainault. 60, 
68, 69 ; in Holland, 87 

Spain, war of, against Britain, 

Stanley, palace of George VI. at, 
35. 37, 4i ; city of, 92-95 ; 
meeting of Parliament at, 38, 
92 ; University of, 94, 95 

Steinhold, Russian admiral, 22, 23 

Stormer, Count, leads rebellion of 
Danes against Russia, 63 

Suffolk, Duke of, influence of, with 
George VI., 6, 7 ; literary tastes 
f 33 34 > takes part in founda- 
tion of University of Stanley, 
94, 95 

Switzerland allied to Britain, 64, 

TURKEY, wars of, with Russia. 28, 

UNIVERSITY, the, of Stanley, 94, 

VENTADOUR, Duke of, French 

general, 27, 28, 59 
Vienna, siege of, 45 : battle of, 

47, 48 
Vivionne, Duke of, French 

general, 26, 27 


WETHERBY, battle of, 19-21 
Winox, battle of, 26, 27 

YOUNG, British poet, 42, 94 


By C. W. C. OMAN, M.A., Fellow of All Souls' College, 

Crown 8v0. With Maps. js. 6d. 

THE DARK AGES, 476-918. 


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LONDON, W.C., May 1899. 

fust published. Small Crown 8v0. 2s. 6d. 

This Church and Realm 

Some Difficulties of the Day Examined. 

By the REV. C. E. BROOKE, M.A., 
Vicar of St. John the Divine, Brixton. 

CONTENTS. Canonical Obedience and Church Courts The Ornaments 
Rubric The Eastward Position Vestments Incense Reservation. 

For the instruction of his people the Rev. C. E. Brooke gave on the 
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points in the Church's system, and it is hoped that their publication at the 
present moment in book form will be of advantage to the cause of the 
Catholic Movement. 

Just Published. Royal^vo. 

A Short Way out of Materialism 


Vicar of St. Thomas's, Camden Town. 

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The Future State. 

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The Christian's Manual 

Containing the chief things which a Christian 
ought to Know, Believe, and Do to his Soul's Health. 

By the REV. W. H. H. JERVOIS, M.A., 
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With a Preface by the Right Rev. C. C. GRAFTON, D.D., 
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This book is intended to be a Complete Manual of private and public 
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CONTENTS. Daily Prayers Acts of Faith, Hope, etc. Bible Reading 
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Sin Forgiveness of Sin Repentance Communion The Sacraments 
Baptism The Catechism Confirmation Matrimony Visitation of the 
Sick Communion of the Sick Spiritual Communion Commendation of 
a Departing Soul Burial of the Dead Churching of Women Commina- 
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c Mr. Jervois has succeeded in his task Jervois's method, offers a substitute for 

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teaching into life will glorify God and pro- supply the very best short form we have 

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A Continuous Narrative of 
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Words and Days 

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A New and Cheap Edition in One Volume. 
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A Paradise of English Poetry 

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