Page images
PDF
EPUB

1

fia, while another considerable body was ces by the courts of Petersburg and Bere in readiness to be transported along the lin, backed by the influence of G. BriBlack sea, in order to cut off bis retreat. tain and Denmark, to all which powers Advices posterior 10 thole bore, that Pr. the Disidents had applied for their good Heraclius had proposed to the Grand Sig: offices in the case. We had advice in nior an amneity for himself and his affo. 1765, that somewhat was done, in a juciates, on which condition they would lub-.dicial way, favourable to the Dillidents mit to take the oath of fidelity, and to pay of Great Poland; but there were still in an annual tribute in money onlv; but that a confined and precarious way, and their bis Sublime Highneis refused to make civil privileges throughout the whole peace with the Georgians, on any other kingdom remained to be quite annihilaterms then their delivering up the Prince, ted. to be sent to Constantinople.

An ordinary diet assembled, at WarAccording to the advices of last year, saw, the 6th of Otober 1766. Declathe Porte bad agreed to conclude a peace rations by the courts of Petersburg, Lonwith those people, on condition of their don, Berlin, and Copenhagen, were on paying to the Grand Signior a yearly that occasion presented to his Polish Matribute of 18,000 piastres, and deliver- jesty, and laid by him before the diet. ing up to hinn i wenty-four of their young Those declarations required the re-estanative maicens; but it was thought this blishment of the Dillidents in their civil Jaiter part, with respect to patises of rights and privileges, and the peaceable their own country, would not be como enjoyment of their modes of worship, leplied with. It is to be here observed, cured to them by laws of the kingdom, that they could easily purchase young girls which had been observed during two from elsewhere, such a trade being com- centuries, and confirmed by the importmon in those paris. We had lubiequent ant treaty of Oliva, concluded by all the accounts of Ps. Heraclius being at Vien- northern powers, which could not be alna; then in Holland; and of his iending tered without the consent of all the con. a present of fix beautiful camels to Paoli, tracting parties. The Bishops in general, general of the Corsicans, with a short supported by many others, contended jetter full of the glow of Oriental senti. strongly for a confiridation of the decrees ments and style. By latest advices of last made against the Diflenters in 1717, year, the Porte had received authentic 1723, and 1736, though the foreign information of another intended insure powers who interested themselves in their rection of the Georgians, and a Turkish favour had observed in their declarations, army was on march towards the Black that those decrees pafled in the midit of lea.

intestine troubles, and were contradicted There were accounts early in the year, by the formal protestations and express that the states of Tripoli, Tunis, Algier, declarations of foreign powers. After and Morocco, had positively refuted to violent contests, the matter was referred p.: v tribute to the Porte; laying, they to the Bithops and Senators, for their o. had no need of its protection, and innit pinion. Upon report from them, the ing on their independency.

diet came to a resolution, That they POLAND furnished a number of histo. would fully maintain the DiGidents in all rical articles worth notice, thoughout the rights and prerogatives to which they thie whole of last year. A short recapi- were intitled by the laws of the country, Tulation of preceding events is neceflry, particularly by the constitutions of the to make those within that period be un- year 1717, G. and by treaties; and derstood. Adecree had b:en made by that as to their griefs in regard to the exthe convocation-diet in 1764, during the ercise of their religion, the college of inter-reign immediately before the elec- Most Reverend Archbishops and Bithops, tion of his present Polith Maj-{ty, in under the direction of the Prince Primate, regard to all dillenters from the Roman. would endeavour to remove thote difficul. Crinolic religion, which more than anyties, in a manner conformable to justice former one abridged the free exercise of and neighbouriy love. This resolution their religion, and wholy excluded them was nolified to the ainballadors and mifrom all posts and places under the go- nitters of those courts which had prelentvernment. That decree

ed the declarations. firmed by the coronation-diet held after 0:1 the 29th of November that year, the election, notwithstanding remonstran. the last day of the diet's sitting, the col

lege

was

[ocr errors]

lege of Archbishops and Bishops figned certed matters with their prote&tors, enDine articles, which were deposited a- tered into two confederacies, on the 20th mong the archives of the kingdom. Ac. of March last year, at Thorn and Sluck. cording to these, the Dillidents were to One of them was signed by the Disidents be allowed the free exercise of their re of Great and Little Poland, the other ligion in all places where they had been by those of the Great Duchy of Lithuapermitted by the law to have churches; nia. In the act of confederacy signed at and might repair those churches, or re- Thorn, after taking notice of the ancient. build them, but not enlarge their extent. constitutions, which confirmed the liberThey were to have burying-places; the ty of religion, and ellablished a perfect funerals to be performed without ceremo- equality among the nobility, which conpies, except those permitted to them by ftitutions had been declared fundamental lay. Where they had no churches, they laws of the state, particularly the conmight perform divine service privately in ftitutions of 1573, and a good many otbeir houses. The Greek priests might thers specified downward for above a cenbaptize, marry, and bury, provided they tury, which were fortified by a folemn paid the establithed clergy their legal fees. oath, that no one should be oppressed or This regulation was signed by all the Pre. persecuted on account of difference of relates, except the Bilhop of 'Wilna, who ligion; a long recital is made of opprelrefused to do it, and two others, who fions, evils, and violences, endured by were not present.

the Dillidents fuccellively since the year Among the new laws made by that 1717, in regard to their persons, their diet, there was one for restraining the churches, their rights, and their liber. authority of the two great generals of ties. The confederators observe in the the Crown and Lithuania ; which, how. act, that all their hopes of redress from ever, was not to take place till after the complaints, manifeftoes, and protests, deaths of the persons who then enjoyed had vanished since the inmediately prethose dignities. --By that time a small bo. ceding diet, when, instead of their situady of Russian troops had marched to with- tion being rendered easier, tlre constituin two miles of the capital.

tion of 1764 had been renewed and conIt might easily bave been foreleso, that firmed, which took from them even the a resolution to maintain the Dillidents in shadow of every one of their birthrights, all the rights and prerogatives to which and threatened thein with entire destructhey were intitled by the constitutions tion. For these reasons they engaged of the year 1717, and others since then and swore, mutually to defend their anreferred to, would give small satisfaction cient privileges, and the free exercise of to those Diflidents themselves, or to the their religion. At the same time they refpe&able powers who thought them- protested, that they would always remain selves bound to take interest in their con. faithful and obedient to the King; and cerns. The Dillidents dated the begin. resolved, that a deputation thould be sent ning of their sufferings from the very to him, to allure bin of their fidelity, constitution of 1717. The referring of and fupplicate his proteâion. They invitheir grievances to the Archbilhops and ted those of the communion of Rome, and Bishops was looked upon as a meature all true patriots, to unite with them in still more unreasonable than ever had maintaining the fundamental laws of the been taken before, that being a body of kingdom, the peace of religion, and the men who had always been their opposers, rights of each one jointly with theme who had occasioned all the evils of which selves. They claimed, by virtue of puthey complained, and by their station blic treaties, the protection of the powers could not be favourable to them. A new who guarantee their rights and liinfringement was reckoned to be made berties, namely, the Empiess of Rusia, on the constitutions of the kingdom, and and the Kings of Sweden, G. Britain, the rights of the Dillidents, by endea- Denmark, and Prusija. Laitly, they pro. vouring to draw them from the civil ju- tested, that they had no intention of actridiajon, under whose power they ought ing to the detriinent of ihe Romau.Cato be, in order to fubje& them to that of thotic religion, which they duly rtipectthe clergy. Consequent to this view of ed; and only asked the liberty of their the case, an additional body of about own, and the re-establishment of th 15.cco Rollian troops entered Poland. ancient rights. The Dillidents, having previously colle Lt-Gen. Goltz, staroste of Tuche!, was

A 2

choict

chosen by the confederacy of Thorn to be The King of Prussia, in a fresh declatheir Marshal; and after his death, which ration delivered about the faine time, happened April 24. his brother, Maj.- fuid he thought he had perceived subfiftGen. Baron de Goitz, Narofte of Grau- ing in the internal part of Poland, ever dentz. Twenty-four counsellors were fince the last interregnum, a root of difappointed to allint him in every thing to fensions and troubles ; and was convinbe treated of and done. The three cie ced it was necessary to think on the ties of Thorn, Elbing, and Dantzick, means of remedying matters. He acceded to that confederacy the roth of declared that the injustice which had April.

been acted towards the Dilidents was too The confederation entered into hy the great for him not to find himself enga. Protestant and Greek nobility of Lithua: ged to approve the part they had taken, nia, was to the fame purpose with that in forming themselves into a confederacy now given an account of. They elected to pursue their rights; and could not for Maj.-Gen. Grabowski to be their Marshal. bear taking bis measures in consequence This confederacy was acceded to by the with the Empress of Russia. He concluDuke and Nobles of Courland May 15. ded with advising the Polish nation to with precautions in regard to that duchy meet in a diet-extraordinary, for a geneparticularly specified.

ral pacification among all its members, Four deputies from the two confedera. On occasion of opening the tribunals, cies had an audience of his Polish Majesty the confederacies of Dillidents presented the 28th of April, on the subject mention. manifeftoes, fignifying, that though they ed in the acts of confederation ; and re- had no intention of stopping the course ceived as favourable an answer as could of justice, yet they would not permit any be expected. The Prince Primate also of their aflociates, in their then circumexpressed himself in very kind terms to a stances, to be judged by, or called be. deputation sent to him. It may be taken fore, any of the tribunals, in any case or notice of here, that the then Primate ha- on any pretence whatever. At the same ving died June 18. the King nominated time the Russian troops in Poland were Count Podoki, recommended by the Emo gradually increased to about 30,000 men. press of Russia, an evidence of his being On die 25th of May a great senatus con. favourable to the Dillidents, to be Prince cilium was held at Warsaw; in which it Primate and Bifhop of Gnesna in his stead. was resolved, that an extraordinary diet,

Soon after the signing of the confede- for determining the affair of the Dilliracies, a new declaration of the Empress dents, should be opened the 5th of Ocof Ruffia was presented to his Polish Ma- tober. jesty. In it the represented the concern About this time great numbers of other it gave her, to behold a state, in the confederations were formed throughout happiness of which she took so much in. all Poland and Lithuania. As by far the terest, attacked in its foundations, by a greater part of them did not at all appear forcible separation of a sixth part of the to be against the Dillidents, but against citizers from the body of the nation ; al- the administration of public affairs, into fo observing, that this was not the only which they alledged innovations had been point wbichi divided the Polill nation, introduced, they were for some time cal. and that it had for some time concealed led Confederations of Malecontents. All in its bosom the seeds of discord, which those confederacies publiBed manifestoes, threatened the public tranquillity. She in which they recommended to the inhadeclared, that lie took under her protec- bitants to quarter and treat the Ruflian tion the confederation of the Dillidents, troops as the defenders of the Polish lias she was bound to do by the engage: berty, proper persons having been every ments of her crown; and intimated lier where appointed to rate the value of pro, desire to have an extraordinary diet as- visions. fembled, for pacifying the troubles of the Prince Radzivil, who had been masfate, doing justice to all, and drying up ried to the King's lister, who vigorously the fource of every dilconient and divi- ftrove to disconcert measures taken for fion. She also declared, that her protec. his Majesty's elevation to the throne, and tion was not confined to the Dillidents had been in foreign countries from that only, but that every Pole, fiom the mo. time, returned home lait summer. Along meni of his acceding to the plan of con- with the news of this came information, ciliation, Mould enjoy it in its full extent. that he had engaged to accede to the

confederation

men.

confederation made at Sluck by the Dilli- The Bishop of Cracow sent a very padents of Lithuania. Count Branicki, thetic and zealous letter to the dietines Great General of the Crown, who had assembled at Warsaw the 15th of August, obstinately opposed his Majesty's ele&ion, in which he exhorted them to arm their but was afterwards received into favour, nuncios with courage, by giving them and restored to his office, was said to fa: orthodox and patriotic instructions, that vour, under hand, the confederacy form- they might not grant to the Disidents ed at Thorn. All this was thought to be new advantages beyond those which the a little extraordinary, as both those no. laws secured to them, but only those blemen publicly professed the Roman-Ca- which the constitutions of the country, tholic religion.

and treaties with foreign powers, expressThe different confederacies of male- ly granted them. He observed, that the contents formed in the twenty-four di- King's universals for convoking the diet, ftri&s of Lithuania, united at Wilna the mentioned only the confederacies of 2d day of June; and that general confe- Thoro and Sluck, and entirely omitted deracy re-established Pr. Radzivil in his the patriotic matters intended by their. liberty, estates, and honour, of which avgult neighbours, in regard to the supthe dates of that great duchy had, in porting of their principal laws, the perpe1764, declared bim to be deprived. tuating of their liberty, and the remo

On the 22d of June, Pr. Radzivil was ving of those innovations which threatenchosen Grand Marshal of the General ed to impair their happiness; and advised Confederacy of all Poland, which then them to instruct their nuncios in such began to be called the National Confedera. manner, that they would not perinit any cy. It was said to be composed of no thing to be treated of in the diet, but fewer than 72,000 noblemen and gentle- insist on another being convoked, whose

universals might be analogous to the deThe general confederacy sent to the clarations of the powers concerned, and several waywodies of the kingdom, re- to the wishes of the nation. quiring their conipliance with the follow- Such an appearance had the affairs of ing articles: 1. That all the gentlemen Poland assumed by this time, as greatly who had not joined the confederacy alarmed the court of Rome. The Pope fbould do it immediately ; 2. That all therefore sent briefs, to the King, to the the courts of justice should subsist as for- Great Chancellor, to the Noblese, to the merly, but not judge any of the confede. Bishops of the kingdom, and to the Prince rates ; 3. That the Marshals of the Primate, with such arguments and exhorCrown should not pass any sentence with tations as were thought most proper to out the participation of at least four of ward off the danger feared. Mean-while the confederates; and, 4. That the councils were frequently held at the BiMarshals of the Crown and the treasurers shop of Cracow's palace, where all the fhould be immediately restored to the Prelates at Warsaw assembled. pofleffion of their respective rights.

The King of Sweden not having ac. Pr. Radzivil sent a deputation, the ift tually done any thing in favour of the of August, to the commissaries of war Dillidents upon their former applications, and treasury, requiring them to take an they addressed a letter to him afreili

, by oath, importing, among other things, which they intreated him to employ his That they would be faithful to the King good offices for them, in consequence of and the Confederates ; also that they the treaty of Oliva, in which Cliarles XI. would support and protect the Roman- one of his predecessors, was a contracting Catholic religion, and the liberty and party. His Majesty appointed Baron de prisileges of other religioos. He likewise Douben to be his resident to the King published Universalia, in which he recom- and Republic for that purpose, who arrimended to the nobility and gentry of the ved at Warsaw the 23d of September. several provinces, to furnith their nun- An union of the confederacy of Dillirios with ample instructions, that at dents with the general confederacy of tte diet they might deliberate, not only malecontents, or of the nation, was efon the affairs of the Dillidents, but also fected Sept. 26. in the palace of Pr. Radthose which essentially concerned all the zivil, who on that occafion expressed great orders of the state and the public good, friendihip for the idents. Within a particularly the maintenance of the fun- few days after, the Ruilian troops in the damental constitution,

çapital were reinforced, and a consider

able able body of them was posted at about also fixed to the ift of February this year.. five miles distance.

Before the end of October the Rullian The extraordinary. diet was actually o. troops had all, except one fmall body pened the 5th of O&tober, when the King which reinained in Warsaw, gone into made a pathetic speech, exhorting to con- winter-quarters, the greater part of them cord. This was followed by another from on the territories of the nobility who had the Bishop of Cracow, which concluded most opposed the scheme relating to tbe with an observation, That it was not suf. Dillidents. fcient for his Majesty to bear the title of The ministers of all the other foreign an Orthodox King, but that he should be powers interesting themielves in the affo in reality. The diet sat that day and fairs of the Diflidents, as well as Prince the next; but the affair of the Dillidents, Repnin, were present at the conferences ; which was first brought on the carpet, and by the 21st of November, some of met with such oppofition, as induced Pr. those matters were settled in the commisRadzivil, in quality of Marshal, to ad- fion. Several particulars of the agree. journ the next meeting to the 12th. That ment were mentioned in the public painterval was employed in using every ex- pers, which we shall not meddie with pedient for bringing those into a favour. here, hoping to have ere long an opporable disposition who had opposed Pr. Rad- tunity of giving the whole in an authen. zivil's plan; which was, to appoint a tic manner, when all is confirmed by the commifiion furnished with full power to diet. enter into conference with Prince Rep- It does not seem easy, from all that apnin, the Rullian ambassador, concerning peared in the British public papers, to the affairs of the Diflidents. Not with• form a precise judgement concerning the Standing such pains, the meeting on the pretensions of the Dilsidents. The things J2th proved extremely tumultuous. The which have turned out greatly to their Bishops of Cracow and Kiow, some other advantage, bowever their claims may be Prelates, and several Magnats, declared founded in ancient constitutions and trea. they would never consent to the esta- ties, are, their having been joined by so blishment of such a commillion; and at remarkably great a confederation of their the same time spoke with more vehemence fellow-citizens, who at the same time, as than ever against the pretensions of the appears from an observation made by the Diflidents. Some of the deputies answer. King in one of his speeches, bad even ed them with great warmth, which bred prefied for the allistance of the Rullian fuch animosity as occafioped another ad- troops ; their affairs being put under the journment to the 16th.

determination of an extraordinary diet, On the izti, the Bishops of Cracow where the liberum veto does not use to and Kiow, the Palatine of Cracow, and take place, but resolutions are taken by the Starofie Dolmiki, were arrested and plurality of votes ; and their having the carried off by detachments of Ruflian united protection of all the foreign powers troops. The crime alledged against them, who have hitherto claimed any interest in in a declaration published next day by the case. Prince Repnin, was, That they had been There were intimations, towards the wanting, in their conduct, to the digni- end of the year, that great numbers of ty of her Imperial Majesty of Rullia, by peasants, who are all ablolute Naves in attacking the purity of her intentions to. Poland, had entered into a confederacy; ward the republic; though he was re- that they do not pretend to rid themselves folved to continue her protection and are of all service to their lords, but require, fistance lo the general confederacy, uni. that the bondage under which they groan ted for preserving the Polish liberties, and be abolished, and their service restricted correcting all the abules which had been to three days in the week ; also that, like introduced into governinent, contrary to the order of peasants in Sweden, they the fundamental laws of the country, be admitted into the diet, and enjoy the Mean while those members were not per- same privileges in it. We may secoliect mitted to return any more to the diet. here, that, in 1766, the Emperor of Ger.

There was another turbulent meeting many and the Empress-Queen so far graon the 16th ; but the day after that Pr. tified a deputation from the peasants of Radzivil's pian was approved, and com. Hungary, as

issue an ord nance, acinillaries were appointed for the purpose cording to which no farmer or husband. Baile The next litling of the diet was man there can now be obliged to perform

for

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »