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tions, when not otherwife engaged by a clofe attention to the useful, or mellowed by a knowledge of the fine arts.

It may now appear late to look back to the fubverfion or change of the feudal fyftem, and from thence to derive reasons for prognofticating the approach of a lefs martial age. This change was not indeed immediately productive of fo happy an effect. Many, however, of the causes of ancient quarrels were certainly removed, by the different modifications which that fyftem underwent in most of the countries of Europe. The two laft centuries were (partly through accident, and partly from thofe epidemic paffions, which have been obferved at particulareras to poffefs the minds of great bodies of mankind) fo peculiarly fertile in producing new caufes of diffenfion, that the confequences naturally to be expected from the decline of the feudal government could not be perceived amidst the continual din of fresh difputes. It may be unneceffary to recapitulate thofe caufes many of


generally known. Religion, or the pretence to it, had its full fhare amongst them. The uncertain rights of fucceffion in most countries, together with the avidity with which all mankind were feized to grapple at the treasures of the new world, were fuch feeds of contention, as ferved, along with many others, to keep Europe in continual agitation.

Several of the principal of those caufes, and happily, fome of thofe which occafioned the greatest mifchief, are now no mɩ The violence of religious animofity; that bitterness of zeal, which fet mankind to the deftruction of each


other's bodies, for the falvation of their fouls, is not only worn out, but almoft forgotten. Succeffions, boundaries, and rights of government, are fixed upon a more known and fettled foundation than ever they were before; and commercial nations have discovered a more fuccefsful and happy method of procuring gold, than by digging it themfelves from the mine, or foreing it from thofe that do. p 13


Many other fources of contention of a later date, together with fome miftaken notions in politics, which have had their day and done fufficient mifchief, are exhaufted. Some jalt caufes of contention are alfo removed. The ideas attending a balance of power, feem to be at prefent very different from what they have been formerly. The dread of univerfal monarchy appears to be much abated, if not entirely at an end. With regard to England, to our happiness, the causes of thofe fears which were once fo prevalent, with respect to the proteftant fucceffion; the danger of rebellions within, or invafi

from without, from that caufe, are fo entirely vanished, that they only ferve to endear to us our prefent fecurity.

Thefe circumftances feem in fome fort pledges of a greater tranquillity to our pofterity, than we or our ancestors have enjoyed. However, it must be confeffed that all fpeculations of this kind, however plaufible, are in their nature 1éxtremely uncertain. The natural inconftancy of mankind, the fport which fortune feems at fome times to make of every fyftem, deftroydeftroy ing in a day, or an hour, the beft laid foundations, and trampling the labour of ages, and the wifelt $7 infti



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inftitutions in the duft; all thefe may forbid the hopes of a lafting permanency to any fyftem of tranquillity, let the prefent appearances be ever fo ferene.

declared Queen of Naples; but upon this occafion it made no great change, and the young Prince has been fince contracted to her next fifter the Archduchefs Caroline, who is about a year younger.

Unnatural as the prefent friendfhip and alliance between thofe ancient and hereditary enemies, the houfes of Bourbon and Austria, may appear, and dangerous as the effects of it might at first feem to many of their neighbours; it is not perhaps impoffible, but it may contribute to preferve that tranquillity, which feemed to be fo much endangered by it. This will appear the lefs problematical, if we reflect on the many wars in which the bickerings and enmity of these two families have engaged for near two centuries the reft of Europe. Neither does this alliance appear fo very formidable to its neighbours, as it might have done in another fituation of things. The great weight which has accumulated in the northern balance of late years, may well prevent the fcale from preponderating exceflively in their favour.

It does not at prefent appear, that any of the three powers in question are difpofed, or indeed in a condition to difturb the public repofe. France has been long a lofer by her wars, nor do the late trials fhe has made of her ftrength, comparatively with that of her neighbours, give the leaft encouragement to her feeking for new. The fyftem of Europe is much changed fince thofe victo rious days of Lewis the 14th, when he was thuch the terror of it. Other nations have gained great additional ftrength, whilft France has without question rather lost [4] 2 ground;

It must be admitted that this age feems to have a cause of contention more particularly its own, and which cannot fail to fupply in fome degree, those which are now by time and change of manners extinguished. The defire of naval pow. er, which at prefent acts so strongly upon many of the nations in Europe, will generate daily disputes, and must become a fruitful fource of diffenfion. The fpirit of commerce will not be confined to the acquifitions of induftry. The new adventurers in this field will encroach upon the old, while the fame paffion will act as powerfully with the old poffeffors, not to res linquish any of thofe profits which ufually came into their hands, and to which they will think that long prefcription has given them a right.

With respect to other matters, the general ftate of affairs in Eu rope has fuffered no material change fince the conclufion of our last volume. The fame close union and alliance ftill fubfifts between the different branches of the houfe of Bourbon. The friendship and union between that family and the house of Auftria, is ftill more clofely cemented by a marriage between the youngKing of Naples, and a daughter of the Emprefs Queen. The hopes of this alliance might indeed have been fruftrated in a lefs numerous family, by the death of the Archduchefs Maria Jofepha, who was feized with the small-pox in a few days after her being married by proxy and

15th Oct. .1767.

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ground; yet it must be owned, not in fuch a degree, but that her great natural refources, and the very valuable and improveable colonies fhe is ftill poffeffed of, will always make her very refpectable if not formidable. At prefent fhe is loaded with a very heavy debt, which will require length of time, joined with ftrict œconomy and clofe attention to her finances, to difcharge. Nor will her commerce, though greatly recovered, fuddenly forget the fhocks it received in the laft war. Agriculture has, through a feries of mifmanagement, been long on the decline in that country; it was the error of the famous Colbert, that he wanted to form the French into a nation of manufacturers, and forgot that agriculture is the principal ftrength of a ftate. The French miniftry, as well as the nation, feem now fully fenfible of this error; and agriculture meets with all that encouragement and attention which it fo juftly merits. It will, however, require length of time, and all the leifure of peace, to bring it in any degree near the perfection to which it is capable of arriving.

betwen the two nations, is in fome degree wearing off; and it is obfervable, that more French of di ftinction have vifited England fince the laft war, than at any other period fince the English loft their great poffeffions in that country.

The most interefting event which the past year has produced in Holland, has been the marriage of the Prince Stadtholder with the Princefs Royal of Pruffia. Nothing could be more pleafing to the whole republic than this marriage, nor could any thing happen of a more interefting nature; the public and private rejoicings they made, and the marks of refpect and regard which they fhewed the princefs upon every occafion, fufficiently teftified the fenfe they had of it. By this marriage the commonwealth has entered into a nearer connection with a great, a powerful, and a neighbouring prince, whofe difpofition, if not a certain friend, was always to be dreaded; and the vicinity of whofe territories to thofe of the ftates, would always furnish fufficient matter for altercation, whenever he chofe to feek for it. At the fame time this marriage is juftly to be looked upon in a very interefting light with refpect to the Proteftant fyftem in general, and to connect that chain of union, which it will always be fo much the common intereft to preferve between the maritime and northern powers, and the Proteftant princes of Germany.

In the north, affairs at prefent wear the most benign afpect. The great difputes in Poland about the Diffidents, which feemed pregnant with fo much danger to the general repofe, are through the weighty and effectual mediation of the great

Upon the whole it is evident, that nothing can be fo effential to the intereft of France, as the continuation of peace; and that they must be the most pernicious politics, which could at prefent urge it to enter wantonly into a war.

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With refpect to England, France feems at prefent to be in a state of perfect good neighbourhood; nor is there any apparent caufe of quarrel likely to difturb this harmony. It may not perhaps be quite vifionary to imagine that the violent animofity and national prejudice, which has fo long fubfifted

great powers, who by treaty, as well as connection, were interefted in their confequences, brought into a train of being fettled upon the most permanent and happy footing.

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Germany has offered no matter of political obfervation during the courfe of the prefent year. The Emperor and King of Prufia fpend the fummers, either in reviewing their armies, or in making progreffes through different parts of their dominions; by which they become eye-witneffes of the improvements that are requifite to be made, the encouragement that is neceffary to be given, and of the diftreffes and wants of their fubjects. Notwithstanding this attention to domeftic and internal happiness, the two great powers of the empire are far from being negligent of their military departments; the fword feems only to lumber, but does not fleep, and their armies are kept compleat, and in the beft condition, The Emprefs Queen has published an edict, whereby the foldiers in all her armies are allowed and even encouraged to marry, a corrective in fome degree to the political mifchiefs fs attendant on thofe extenfive military establishments.


condition annexed, that if any of his cruizers fhould happen to be taken, the republic fhould repair the lofs in ready money.

Thefe difhonourable propofals were refufed with a proper difdain by the fenate; and as the Dey of Algiers had broken the peace, and imprisoned their conful, they equipped a fquadron of men of war, which they difpatched to Algiers under the command of Admiral Emo to bring him to reafon. The Dey continued obftinate; upon which the admiral, according to his orders, immediately declared war against him, and failed out of the harbour to fulfil his inftructions, which were to block up the port, and deftroy all the Algerine corfairs he could meet with.

These vigorous refolutions foon brought the Dey to temper, and indeed to a fubmiffion as mean as his demands had been infolent; he found himself under a neceffity of making ufe of the mediation of the British conful, to procure a renewal of the peace upon the original terms.



Turning our eyes to the fouthward, the fcene is there alfo entirely pacific. Indeed the new Dey of Algiers had made fome extraordinary demands upon the republic of Venice; among the reft, befides the

The other parts of Italy have afforded little remarkable, except the expulfion of the Jefuits from Naples and Parma; as these events are intimately connected with, or may rather be looked upon as confequences of the meafures which had been already taken in Spain to the fame purpose, we shall include them under that head; as well as the ineffectual remon

Payment of an exorbitant fum offtrances made by the court of Rome money, he infifted that his that his cor- in their favour. The edict which •fairs, no fhould have free liberty to has been paft by the regency of Cruize in the gulf of Venice, and Parma, with refpect to ecclefiaf10 Tab take the fhips of any nation tical affairs, and which almoft towith whom he was not bound by tally fecludes the Roman fee from treaty with this extraordinary all jurifdiction in that dutchy, [4] 3 toge

together with the confequences, which are faid to be an excommunication, will find their proper place in the tranfactions of the enfuing year. The power and interest of the court of Rome is daily losing ground in Italy; where other ftates, befides thofe we have mentioned, are taking measures to circumfcribe it. The government of Milan, which includes the Auftrian Lombardy, has published a law, by which all the rights which the pope or the bithops have hitherto exercifed over ecclefiaftics, either with regard to their effects or their perfons, is transferred to a council, eftablished for that purpofe at Milan. All ecclefiaftics are obliged to fell the eftates which they have become poffeffed of fince the year 1722; and no fubject, whether ecclefiaftic or fecular, is permitted to go to Rome, to follicit any favour except letters of indulgence, without the confent of the faid council.

This law is the fame as that which was published at Venice under the pontificate of Benedict XIV. and which occafioned fo many debates that the Republic was obliged to abolish it, in the beginning of the pontificate of Clement XIII. but the prefent law is paffed at a period much more favourable to the independency of fovereigns.

Portugal has afforded but little material in the course of the paft Whether from fome mistaken year. notion in politics, or from fome national prejudice, or whatever other caufe, is uncertain; but the prefent prime minifter in that country has taken every occafion daring his administration, of dif

couraging, reftraining, and diftreffing the British factories and commerce in that kingdom. This conduct feems the more wholly unaccountable, as the very exiftence of that nation as an independent ftate, has fo long and fo often depended upon the powerful protection of Great Britain; which has alfo upon every other occafion, always acted the part of a moft faithful ally and generous friend, If the advantages arifing from the commerce between the two nations were not mutual, this conduct might admit of fome plea in its juftification; but the contrary is evidently fhewn, by the great preference which has been fo long given by England to the Portuguefe wines, for which they could find no other market, and the confequent immenfe confumption of them in thefe countries. Many have with reafon been furprized at the fupineness of the British miniftry, in putting up fo long with the frequent oppreffions, infults, and indignities, which have been fo repeatedly offered to the English merchants in that country. Nor have they been lefs furprized at the temerity of the Portuguese minifter, in venturing to roufe the indignation of a nation, which could fo eafily and fo effectually do itself ample juftice.

The irregularity and inclemency of the feafons for fome years palt in different parts of Europe, has occafioned an uncertainty and great deficiency in the crops of feveral countries, by which the poor have fuffered great diftreffes, The ecclefiaftical ftate, and fome other parts of Italy, have been feverely affected by this calamity, and were it not for that happy effe&

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