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Two years afterwards, James himself was induced to avow similar principles. Previously to his defeat at the battle of La Hogue, he had issued a Declaration so imperious as to give umbrage even to some of his own party. He now (1693) promulgated one of a different character, in which he professes that the people "might depend upon everything that their own representatives should offer to make them happy; it being his noblest aim to do more for the constitution than the most renowned of his ancestors; and in his opinion his chiefest interest consisted in leaving no umbrage for jealousy in relation to religion, liberty, and property." Thus, for the first time, did a Stuart enunciate constitutional doctrines. To what, but the now recognised influence of public opinion, could this attributed? ”

It was this sentiment that encouraged William, and supported Queen Anne for a considerable time in prosecuting the war against France. When the numerous population of that kingdom, the martial spirit of the people, and the well-known ambition of their monarch, at that period, are taken into account, the eagerness of the English nation in supporting the government to carry on the war, and the interest that the people took in the achievements of the allies in Flanders, can easily be imagined.




Constitutional Speech of Queen Anne.

Jacobite Party. Public Spirit of the English People. Peace of Utrecht. · Letter from the States General to Queen Anne. Bishop Burnet's Interview with the Queen.- State of Affairs previously to the Peace. Political Animosities. Jacobite Conspiracy in Anne's Court. Lord Bolingbroke. Public Opinion in favour of the House of Hanover. The Queen herself desirous of her Brother's Succession.-Jacobite Documents.. Hope entertained by the Pretender's Party on the Death of Anne.



QUEEN ANNE'S first speech "expressed great respect for the memory of the late king, in whose steps she intended to go for preserving both Church and State, in opposition to the growing power of France.'

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The exiled Stuarts resided at no great distance, under the immediate care and avowed protection of the French monarch. A constant correspondence was still kept up between them and the disaffected throughout Great Britain. Many individuals, although adverse to the former conduct, and apprehensive of the tyranny and bigoted principles of James II., yet fancied he was the legitimate monarch,

* Burnet's Hist., book vii. art. 1.

felt interested in his calamities, and pitied the situation and bereavement of his children, who adhered to his fortunes. It was a natural endeavour of the English people, sensible of their situation, jealous of their independence, and of their religion, to act in such a manner as to secure themselves from danger of invasion, and from having a banished prince placed on the throne by foreign bayonets. When the victories gained by the allies had lessened the power, and consequently diminished all apprehension from the ambition, of Louis XIV., the voice of public opinion in England was not in favour of the continuance of hostilities. The success of the armies under Marlborough and Prince Eugene had been such as to diminish considerably the fear of invasion. The result was the peace of Utrecht. All the accounts of the proceedings at this period show the contest that took place between the war faction and the peace party, the former supported by the Duke of Marlborough, the House of Lords, and the bench of Bishops*; the other party by the Court, the House of Commons, and public opinion. "The votes were carried by a great majority, and were looked on as strange preludes to a peace. When the States General heard what exceptions were taken to the barrier treaty, they wrote a very respectful letter to the Queen, setting forth their just claim to and the necessity of the barrier for the security of England as well as of

* Swift.

Holland, concluding that, if there were some articles which, without affecting the essentials of the treaty, might be thought to want explanation, her Majesty should find them willing and ready to treat thereupon. How much soever disinterested people might be affected with this letter, it made no impression, and the managers of the House of Commons got all their votes to be digested in a well-composed flaming representation." *

It would be unnecessary to quote further from the chronicles of Queen Anne's reign for exainples to show how much public opinion had influence in forwarding the treaty of peace with France, which by most writers has been attributed to the change of sentiment in the sovereign influenced by some favourites. It may, however, be remarked, that although the feeling of the country was in favour of peace, yet the treaty with France was concluded with so much precipitation and inattention to the interests of Britain, and of the allies, as to give the opponents of the ministry just cause of complaint, in which the nation joined, and for which at a subsequent day the negotiators were punished.

Bishop Burnet (vol. ii. p. 582.) says, Among others the Queen spoke to myself. She said she hoped bishops would not be against peace. I said a good peace was what we prayed daily for, but the preliminaries gave no hopes of such a one, *Rapin's Hist. book xvi.

and the trusting to the King of France's faith, after all that had passed, would seem a strange thing. She said we should have a peace on such a bottom that we should not at all rely on the King of France's word, but we ought to suspend our opinions till she acquainted us with the whole matter. I asked leave to speak my mind plainly, which she granted: I said any treaty by which Spain and the West Indies were left to King Philip must in a little while deliver up all Europe into the hands of France, and if such peace should be made, she was betrayed and we were all ruined. In less than three years' time she would be murdered, and the fires be again raised in Smithfield: I pursued this long, till I saw she grew uneasy; so I withdrew."

"On the guilt of the former administration in transacting the peace of Utrecht, I have already expressed no unqualified opinion. Waiving their intercourse with the Pretender, which there was not sufficient evidence to prove, the stress of the accusation for treason lay in their seeking to obtain Tournay for the French."* The legislature had no longer the sanction of public opinion for levying the heavy taxes necessary to continue the war, and it was not in the power of either the sovereign or of any government. But neither the number nor the noise of addresses which during the remainder of the year (1712) were presented to the Queen in

* Lord Mahon's Hist. of England, vol. i. p. 4,

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