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tions between the two countries remained in the same unsettled state. The provisional government in Schleswig, which the treaty had abrogated, continued to exercise authority. The Danish ships which had been seized, were not restored; persons imprisoned by Prussia for politisal offences, were not discharged, and the Danish emigrants from Schleswig, were not allowed to return. Denmark seems to have acted with good faith throughout the whole affair, but if she escapes a renewal of hostilities, it may be mainly attributed to the mediation and friendly offices of Great Britain and Russia, both of whom, however, would for different reasons be unwilling at this time to be at war with the Prussian monarchy.
Though the constitution of Denmark was absolute in theory, the power of the crown was greatly restrained by public opinion, and was generally exercised with moderation. It was, however, deemed prudent, as well as liberal in the present monarch, on his accession, to offer a free constitution to his people, and that promise, was this year carried into execution. According to the new constitution, the legislative power, which had been solely in the king, is now vested in the king and the diet; a popular assembly, chosen by the general suffrage of all persons over thirty years of age of good reputation. In default of a successor to the throne, the diet may elect a king, and establish the order of succession. The new states, in which there was a large infusion of the democratic spirit, assembled at Copenhagen on the 23d of October. The main purpose of their meeting was to consider the provisions of the new constitution. The king, however, frankly declared to them, in his opening speech, that he should not permit the new constitution to go into operation, until it was submitted to a new diet. It would seem from this declaration, that more is demanded by the leaders of the popular party than he is willing to concede.
There was some months since an insurrection of the negroes, at the Danish island of Santa Cruz, of no very serious character. It was soon quelled, and since that time the slaves have been emancipated.
RUSSIA. The forbearance of Russia to take an active part in the civil commotions of Europe still continues; and her colossal power has as yet been exerted rather in the way of diplomatic influence, than in that of physical force. The only way in which the last has been manifested, has been in marching troops into Moldavia in the month of July.
The principalities of Wallachia, and Moldavia, lying on the north side of the Danube, near its mouth, and containing from two to three millions of inhabitants, on an area of about 40,000 square miles, though nominally appertaining to Turkey, were by treaty in 1829, placed under the protection of Russia, and have been, in fact, ever since subjected to her control. They are each governed by a hospodar, or prince, selected from a list presented by the Boyars, but he
really owes his appointment to Russian intrigue. After the revolution in France, the contagious spirit of liberty broke out in this remote corner of Europe. A democratic constitution was adopted at Bucharest, the capital of Wallachia, and a provisional government appointed. It is however believed, that this popular effervescence was the result of an intrigue between the Russian general, and the Hospodar Bidisco, that it might afford a pretext to Russia for marching troops into the principalities. When they entered Wallachia, General Luders, the commander, issued a proclamation, in which he stated that the Emperor of Russia, in accordance with the sultan, had resolved to put a stop to the disorders in Wallachia, and to re-establish its legal government. He, therefore, when joined by the troops of the sultan, purposed a military occupation of the country until the propagandists of insurrection were put down, and the lawful authority was restored. The force under him was about 16,000 men, and 40,000 more were said to have crossed the Pruth into Moldavia.
Notwithstanding this public declaration of the concurrence of Turkey, the sultan early in September, viewing this movement of his formidable neighbour with a natural jealousy, and, to say the least, as derogatory to the dignity of the Sublime Porte, earnestly protested against it, insisted that he was able to protect his own rights, and ordered troops into the principalities, as much apparently to maintain his authority against his domineering neighbour, as against his rebellious subjects. Russia, on her part, looking to the more important occasions for her intervention, which the troubled state of Europe was likely soon to present, met the spirited course pursued by Turkey in a more pacific mood than she was likely to have done under other circumstances, and ordered her troops to withdraw from the principalities. She still, however, keeps up her warlike attitude on her western frontier, and has a large army ready to march into Europe, whenever policy shall recommend it. With that spirit of moderation which it suits the Russian cabinet now to assume, Count Nesselrode, in a circular to all the diplomatic agents of Russia, in July, asserts the pacific intentions of the emperor; and while he expresses doubts about the success of the French in their scheme of national government, he says that if, however, they should succeed, without disturbing the repose of other nations, the emperor would rejoice at it.
These professions, accompanied as they are with warlike preparations, do not hinder the nations of Europe from watching her movements with lively interest, which is increased by their utter ignorance of her schemes and purposes. But, in truth, her future movements are probably as unknown to herself as her neighbours, since, with that consummate policy which characterizes her cabinet, she will be influenced by circumstances, and either use her vast physical means to extend her conquests, or be content with an increase of her influence in diplomacy, according as one or the other course shall promise the most advantage and the surest success.
Several of the recent political events in Europe appear to be very auspicious to the further aggrandizement of Russia. The Schleswig Holstein controversy has made her intervention a protection to Denmark, and converted that nation and Sweden, to whom she has always been an object of jealousy and dread, into grateful friends. The popular struggles for civil liberty or national independence in Prussia and Austria have weakened the two powers which would, by position, be the first objects of her incursions into Europe: and lastly, the war now waged among the different races has divided those whose obvious interests lay in a united resistance against her power, whether Magyars, Germans, or Slavonians, and has also greatly weakened, and perhaps neutralized the hostile feelings of the Poles, who, like the Russians, belong to the Slavonian family.
The only deduction to be made from these accessions to her weight and influence is to be found in the new confederation of all the German states, and which, presenting a stronger barrier to her on the west than ever before existed, may be more than an equipoise to all the favourable circumstances that have been mentioned. But this political union may be ranked, as we have seen, among the uncertain problems of the future.
SPAIN AND PORTUGAL. Both of these countries indicate a restless and discontented people, and an unsettled state of things. In Spain, the energy of the minister, Narvaez, has repressed popular commotions, but has not proved sufficient to prevent them. Partial insurrections have, throughout the year, appeared in different parts of the kingdom, but these disturbances in their details seem to be as little deserving of historical notice as the disputes and wars of our Indian tribes. They do, indeed, show an unsound state of the body politic, but do not afford evidence of the character of the distemper, nor, indeed, whether the disease is simple or complicated, and of course leave us ignorant of the remedy.
ITALY. This ill-fated country has met with sad reverses of late, and its emancipation from Austrian rule is now as distant as ever.
The successes which first attended the arms of Sardinia and Lombardy, under Charles Albert, surprised the world as much as it gratified the hopes and pride of the Italians. But the military character of the Austrians has at length resumed its wonted ascendency, and the hopes of Italian independence, and yet more of Italian liberty, are for the season extinguished. The Austrian army under Radetsky, receiving large re-enforcements, while the efforts of Charles Albert gradually became feebler, had an uninterrupted tide of success until it entered the city of Milan on the 9th of August. From that moment Charles Albert lost the character both of a great captain and a patriot, and the cause of which
he had been the leader became hopeless. It was to no purpose that England and France interposed, in behalf of the independence of Lombardy. The Austrian government felt too well assured of her power, to surrender any part of her former dominions in Italy, and it suited neither France nor Great Britain to present to Austria, if she refused their intervention, the alternative of war. So far from taking that course, they made a merit of necessity, and when envoys from Sardinia, seeking to profit by the insurrection of October in Vienna, applied to those governments for aid, they both positively declined giving any promise of assistance, and Lord Palmerston stated that he had advised against the unequal struggle with Austria, and that the renewal of hostilities would lead to a war of extermination in Lombardy. He added that if Sardinia refused to confide her destinies to her friends, France and Great Britain, the latter would withdraw from the mediation.
The French government, in a gentler tone of refusal, urged that the recent events in Germany threatened to produce complicated diplomatic relations with other powers, alluding, no doubt, to the probable hostile interposition of Russia, for which France must be prepared; and that as France had decided to enforce non-intervention in Germany, she was compelled to conform to it in Italy. Thus the only hopes of Italian independence now rest on the success of the republican party in Germany, or, perhaps, the separation of Hungary from Austria.
Sicily, too, after she thought her independence was achieved, has experienced like disappointment. The king of Naples having succeeded in quelling the rebellion in Calabria, set about regaining the sovereignty of Sicily. On the 31st of August, two Neapolitan frigates, and about twenty steamers, anchored opposite Messina, but in their first attempt to land, they were repulsed by the Sicilians. They then, according to their previous practice, tried the effect of a bombardment, not on the forts, but on the city, and thus destroyed some of its best buildings. They finally effected a landing, and the inhabitants either fled to the mountains, or took refuge on board the English and French ships of war at anchor in the road.
esses are said to have been committed both by the invaders and the Sicilians. The resentment of the people was roused to the highest pitch, and the commanding officer at Syracuse being suspected of cowardice or treachery, was first thrown into prison, and then torn to pieces by the multitude.
The French admiral Baudin urged an armistice on the Neapolitan admiral, and being seconded by the English admiral Parker, it was signed on the 4th of September.
The offer of the sovereignty of the island was prudently declined by the king of Sardinia, and it being thought by the English and French governments that Sicily, exposed as she was to a maritime invasion, would not be able to maintain her independence, they exerted themselves to bring about a reconciliation between the Sicilians and the king
of Naples, which, it is said, will be effected, as the former have again agreed to accept Ferdinand as their sovereign, on the condition of their constituting a separate kingdom altogether independent of Naples.
The Pope, with all the disposition he has shown to ameliorate the condition of his subjects, had a difficult part to act between his desire of peace and his unwillingness to break with Austria on the one part, and the very lively sympathy of the people for Venice and Lombardy on the other, and especially as the more turbulent part of the Roman population has been more than once on the verge of insurrection and revolt.
It has for some time been evident, that while the Pope was actuated by a sincere and anxious desire to improve the condition of his people, he meant not essentially to abridge his own temporal authority, and that in this respect his schemes of reform have been somewhat misunderstood both at home and abroad. As soon as this fact became known, the popularity of his Holiness began to decline, and this result was furthered by the character of his prime minister, Count Rossi, who was understood to be unfriendly to reform, and to have decided on employing military force, if necessary to check it.
The fears and suspicions of this sensitive population were strongly excited by the sudden arrival at Rome of a body of carabineers; their review by Count Rossi, and a violent attack on the chamber of deputies in the official gazette. While the minister was on his way to the chamber, he was first hooted and insulted by the mob when he alighted from his carriage, and then mortally stabbed by an unknown hand. There was great agitation among the people during the night, and the next day a large body of people assembled in a public square, and hand-bills were circulated among them proposing five points of reform, to wit: The adoption of Italian nationality: the convocation of a constituent assembly, and the federal pact: a war of independence: the adoption of the entire programme of Mamiani, and his appointment with that of six other named persons as ministers. They proceeded in a body with these propositions to the chamber of deputies, but when there, it was then proposed to go to the Pope's palace, where they accordingly proceeded, and the chamber itself consented to communicate their requests to the Pope. Cardinal Soglia replied, that his Holiness would take the subject into consideration. But this answer not proving satisfactory, the crowd insisted that their deputation should have a personal audience with the Pope. This was granted, and the people were duly informed that the Pope would not grant applications thus made. It was by this time evident that the native troops, including the carabineers, sided with the people, and that a small body of Swiss soldiers was the only part of the public force on whose fidelity he could rely. This guard barred the gates of the palace and prepared to resist the attack of the mob. The attack was made, and some were killed on both sides, among them Signor Palma, the Pope's private
VOL. II.-MARCH, 1849. 5