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ing by mistake was an action that had never been
known before. They behaved in the same manner



The War of 1741. 103

to the chevalier de Caylus in the Straits of Gibraltar :
he gave them as warm a reception, though he had
but three ships against five. Thus did they try each
other's strength, without being declared enemies.
Now the new political system began to be set on foot,
of making war in the time of profound peace; of
committing hostilities in one part of the world, and
of manifesting mutual friendship in another; also
of keeping ambassadors in an enemy's court. This
sort of proceedings was in some measure consoling
to the people, and carried at least marks of modera-
tion, which gave them room to hope for public unity
and concord.

This was the state of affairs between France,
Spain, and England, when the death of the emperor
Charles VI. involved Europe in fresh troubles. We
have already seen the effects in Germany of the dis-
pute between Austria and Bavaria. Italy was soon
ravaged on account of this Austrian succession ; the
Milanese was reclaimed by the Spaniards ; Parma
and Placentia were, by right of birth, to devolve
upon one of the sons of the queen of Spain, she being
born princess of Parma.

King Philip V. wanted, therefore, to secure the
duchy of Milan to his third son. It would have
alarmed Italy too much if Parma and Placentia had
been disposed of in favor of Don Carlos, who was
already master of Naples and Sicily. Too much
dominion in the hands of the same sovereign would
have given a general uneasiness. For this reason



IO4 The War of 1741.

Milan and Parma were designed for the infant Don
Philip.

The queen of Hungary, who was in possession
of the Milanese, used her utmost efforts to keep it.
The king of Sardinia, duke of Savoy, also revived
his claim upon that province : he feared seeing it in
the hands of the house of Lorraine, engrafted on the
house of Austria, who possessing, at the same time,
the Milanese and Tuscany, might be strong enough
to deprive him of the territories which had been
ceded to him by the treaties of 1737 and 1738: but
he was still in greater dread of seeing himself
hemmed in by France and a prince of the house of
Bourbon, while another prince of that family sat
upon the throne of Naples and Sicily. On Jan. I,
1742, he caused to be printed and published a man-
ifesto, in which he stated his claims; but, in the
month of February, he resolved to act conjointly
with the queen of Hungary, without being upon
good terms with her in the main : they only united
against the present danger. This was the only
advantage they proposed. The king of Sardinia
reserved to himself the choice of adopting other
measures whenever he should think proper: this
was a treaty between two enemies, intended only to
defend themselves against a third. The court of
Spain sent Don Philip to attack the king of Sar-
dinia, who chose to have him neither as a friend nor
a neighbor. Cardinal Fleury allowed the infant and
part of his army to pass through France, but refused



The War of 1741. 105

to furnish him with troops; he thought it was
enough to have sent fleets to America.

This minister seemed to be now afraid to grant
twelve thousand men to a prince of the house of
Bourbon and the son-in-law of Louis XV., and yet
about a year before he had marched two armies of
forty thousand each into two different parts of Ger-
many for the service and assistance of the elector of
Bavaria. Sometimes we do too much, and at others
are fearful of doing ever so little. The reason of his
acting thus was that he flattered himself the duke of
Savoy might be regained, who was politic enough to
leave him room to hope for it ; besides, he did not
at this time choose to fall out with the English,
who would have certainly declared war ; for in Feb-
ruary, 1742, the parliament of Great Britain granted
forty thousand sailors to the king, at four pounds
sterling for each man monthly : they also allowed
him considerable subsidies, always expressly recom-
mending to him the care of the balance of power in
Europe. There was a considerable English fleet in
the neighborhood of Gibraltar, and one still stronger
off Brest. Cardinal Fleury, who had hitherto always
maintained the ascendency over the English in nego-
tiating, and relied much upon his superiority in the
cabinet, had neglected the marine. The continental
revolutions, which commenced in Germany, were of
such a nature as not to leave him at liberty every-
where to brave the maritime powers.

The English openly opposed the establishment of



io6 The War of 1741.

Don Philip in Italy, under pretence of preserving the
balance of power. In 1702, indeed, they had viewed
the balance of power in a different light: it was
then they entered into a war for giving to the arch-
duke Charles the crown of Spain, the new world,
the Milanese, Mantua, Naples, Sicily, and Flanders ;
while his brother Joseph was possessed of Hungary,
Austria, Bohemia, and many other dominions, as
well as being seated on the imperial throne.

In a word, this same balance of power, whether
well or ill understood, had become the favorite pas-
sion of the English: but the minister had his eye
upon a much more secret interest. One of his views
was to force Spain to divide with England the
trade of the new world : at this price they would
have assisted Don Philip to enter Italy, as they had
succored Don Carlos in 1731 : but the court of Spain
did not choose to enrich her enemies at such vast
expense; and, moreover, depended upon its power
to establish Don Philip in spite of them. In the
months of November and December 1741, the court
of Spain transported by sea several bodies of troops
to Italy, under the conduct of the duke de Monte-
mar, famous for his victory at Bitonto, and after-
ward remarkable by his disgrace. They had been
successively debarked in Tuscany, and in those ports
called the state Degli Presidii, belonging to the
crown of Sicily. Their route lying necessarily
through Tuscany, the grand duke, husband of the
queen of Hungary, gave them a free passage, hav-



The War of 1741. 107

ing declared himself neutral in the cause of his wife.'
The duke of Modena, who was married to a princess
of the blood of France, also declared himself neutral.
Pope Benedict XIV., through whose territories both
the Spanish and Austrian armies were to pass, prom-
ised the same neutrality, and for a better reason than
any other, as being the common father of both
princes and people.

Fresh forces also arrived from Spain by the way
of Genoa : that republic had also declared itself neu-
tral, and permitted them to proceed. About this
time the king of Naples, too, adopted the neutral
system, though his father and brother were princi-
pally concerned ; yet after all not one of these poten-
tates, apparently neutral, was so in reality. Don
Carlos sent two Neapolitan regiments in Spanish
pay to the duke de Montemar : he was compelled to
promise that he would take no part in the dispute.
Neither the coasts, nor yet the city of Naples, were
secure from being bombarded by the English fleet.
He had not reigned long enough to make his king-
dom that powerful state which it had been formerly
under the princes of Normandy and those of the
house of Anjou. It was now nearly three hundred
years since Naples had had a sovereign residing in
the capital ; the country was always before gov-
erned by viceroys ; and, often changing its masters,
had not been able to acquire that strength which a
state derives from the settled rule of a prince who
resides in person in his dominions. The king had



io8 The War of 1741.

begun with establishing regularity and commerce;
but it requires time to raise a marine, and form a
body of disciplined and warlike troops. This prince's
remaining neutral did not prevent the duke de Mont-
emar's army from being increased by several Nea-
politan regiments, as has been before remarked. By
this expedient Don Carlos trained his soldiers, and
preserved to his people peace and commerce.

The duke of Modena was already the secret friend
of Spain ; Genoa had much the same inclination ; and
the pope, having acknowledged the emperor immedi-
ately after his election, did not appear entirely neu-
tral toward the queen of Hungary.

Count Traun, the queen's governor in the duchy
of Milan, assembling all his forces, joined them to
those which were sent him from Tyrol, in order to
oppose the Spaniards. About the beginning of
March, 1740, the king of Sardinia, warmly seconding
the Austrians, advanced toward the territories of
Parma. Charles Emanuel III., king of Sardinia and
duke of Savoy, appeared every way deserving of a
much more extensive dominion than that which he
possessed, and which it was his chief study to aug-
ment ; he now exerted as much courage and activity
in the cause of the house of Austria, as he had dis-
played against it in the war of 1733. In these two
junctures he showed how valuable his alliance was,
and that nothing ought to be neglected either to
secure him or deprive him of power : he had excel-
lent ministers and good generals, and was himself



The War of 1741. 109

both a minister and a general ; an economist in his
expenses, skilful in his conduct, indefatigable in
hardship, and courageous in danger.

He appeared in the month of May with eighteen
thousand men, on the side of Parma, while the Aus-
trians advanced toward the Bolognese with about
twelve thousand. The duke de Montemar, not nearly
so strong, lost ground everywhere. The king of
Sardinia penetrated to Modena, with the intention of
making that duke renounce the neutrality and join
him : he proposed conjointly with the Austrians,
that he should give up his citadel to them ; but that
prince and his spouse had too much courage to be
compelled to take part in an affair in which they were
no way concerned : they rather chose the misfortune
of losing their territories for a while, than the shame
of being dependent upon those who, under the name
of allies, proposed to hold them really in servitude :
they quitted their principality and retired to Ferrara ;
while the Austrians and Piedmontese, possessing
themselves of the duchy of Modena, wasted the
whole country. Such was the end of their neu-
trality !

As to the pope, if the queen of Hungary did not
oblige him to renounce the system he had adopted,
she forced him, however, to furnish the means of
carrying on the war even on the papal territory ; for,
as soon as her arms had gained the upper hand, she
obtained a bull for levying the tenth penny on all
ecclesiastical livings throughout her Italian domin-



no The War of 1741.

ions : her troops, which pursued the duke de Montfe
mar in the marquisate of Ancona, lived at the
expense of the subjects of the holy sec. Rome did
not have it in her power to cause her neutrality to be
respected. It was no longer the time in which the
popes were able, sword in hand, to defend or increase
their territories : they are more rich, but less power-
ful than formerly : they have neither generals nor
armies: taken up with a pacific system for more
than two hundred years, they receive law generally
from the army that is nearest to their dominions.
Cardinal Alberoni, some years since, proposed a
scheme for remedying this weakness, by establishing
an Italic body with the pope at their head, as we see
in Germany the emperor at the head of the Germanic
body : but this project was too great to defend them
from the calamities to which war always subjects
a neutral and defenceless state.

With respect to the neutrality of the king of
Naples, this was the consequence : On August 18,
they were surprised by the appearance, off the port
of Naples, of an English squadron, consisting of six
fifty-gun ships of war, six frigates, and two bomb-
ketches. Captain, afterward admiral, Martin, who
cciTimanded this squadron, sent an officer ashore with
a letter to the chief minister ; the purport of which
was, that his Neapolitan majesty should recall his
troops from the Spanish army ; or otherwise, that his
capital should be immediately bombarded. Some
conferences were held ; the English commodore, at



The War of 1 741. in

length, gave him only one hour to determine. The
port was but poorly furnished with artillery : they
had not taken precautions necessary to secure them
from insult, because they had not expected it. They
now saw that the old maxim is often verified, which
says : " Whoever rules at sea, will be master on
land." They were obliged to sign everything the
English commodore proposed, and even to observe
the treaty, until they had provided for the defence
of the port and the kingdom.

The English themselves were quite well convinced
that the king of Naples could no more observe this
neutrality which he had been obliged to embrace than
the king of England had observed his in Germany.
The duke de Montemar, who had entered Italy to
reduce Lombardy, retired toward the frontiers of the
kingdom of Naples, always closely pressed by the
Austrians. The king of Sardinia returned at the
same time to Piedmont and his duchy of Savoy,
where his presence was required by the vicissitudes
of war. The infante Don Philip had vainly striven
to debark some fresh troops at Genoa, which he had
been hindered from doing by the English squadron ;
but by land he entered the duchy of Savoy, of which
he became master. The syndics of Chambery paid
him homage: he forbade the inhabitants of the
duchy to correspond in the least with their master,
under pain of death. King Charles Emanuel passed
the Alps with twenty thousand men ; and the infante,
who had scarcely more than two thousand, abandon-



112 The War of 1741.

ing his conquests, retired toward Dauphiny, to wait
for reinforcements. As soon as these had reached
him, the Spaniards possessed themselves a second
time of Savoy. This country is almost entirely open
on the side of Dauphiny ; but it is poor and barren ;
so that the sovereign hardly draws from it a million
of livres yearly. Charles Emanuel abandoned it to
hasten to the defence of places more important.

It is evident from this sketch that the alarm was
general, and all the provinces from the heart of
S^esia to the extremity of Italy experienced different
reverses of fortune. Austria was at this time at open
war only with Bavaria and Spain. Naples, Florence,
Genoa, and Rome were neutral. The people of the
Milanese, of Mantua, of Parma, Modena, and Guas-
talla, long accustomed to be the prey of the con-
queror, without daring to vote either for or against
him, looked upon these irruptions and frequent
shocks with an impotent melancholy concern. The
court of Spain demanded of the states of Switzer-
land a passage through their territories for some
troops they were going to send into Italy, and were
refused. The Swiss hire their soldiers to different
princes, but forbid them entering their territories;
the government is pacific, and the people warriors;
a neutrality of such a nature could not but be
respected. To give proper weight to hers, Venice
levied twenty thousand men.

All Germany seemed indifferent in the quarrel
between Austria and Bavaria. Even the -elector of



The War of 1741. 113

Cologne did not dare to take the part of his brother,
who was emperor : he feared the fate of the duke of
Modena. If Hanover took part in the quarrel, it was
only as a country subject to England, and her sol-
diers were paid by that crown. The German princes
themselves, although their troops were let out as
mercenaries, were yet regarded as neutral. The
imperial territories, in which the forces of the bel-
ligerent powers at different times appeared, were
seldom pillaged. The French paid for everything in
ready money ; the Austrians in paper : England and
Holland still kept up at least the appearance of peace
with France. There was a consul from England at
Naples, a minister from France at Turin, nay, even at
Vienna; and those states again had their represen-
tatives at Paris. But at bottom, the courts of Vienna,
London, and Turin were using their utmost endeav-
ors to shake the French monarchy.

England was more urgent with Holland than ever
to declare war, and France labored hard to prevent
it. This little republic might have enjoyed the glory
of being mediatrix between France and Austria ; it
would have been for her interest, as well as her
grandeur : but the English faction, which was upper-
most at The Hague, prevailed. Holland, however,
missed this opportunity of playing the noblest part
she ever could have done in Europe. It often hap-
pens that one man judges better in times of faction
and prejudice than a whole senate, or even a nation.
M. Van Hoy, ambassador from the states-general
Vol. 338



114 The War of 1741.

to the court of France, incessantly remonstrated to
them, that nothing could so much contribute to their
interest and glory as being the mediators; that if
they pursued a contrary plan, they would have
nothing left but a fruitless repentance. But the
prevailing faction at The Hague grew incensed at
his counsel, and forbade him behavior before
unheard of ! to use any more reflections in his let-
ters. The party that contended for a war caused
his letters to be published in Holland to expose
him to ridicule, because they seemed rather the
exhortations of a philosopher than the letters of an
ambassador; but they only published their own
condemnation.

There were indeed some members of the states-
general who thought and spoke like M. Van Hoy;
but they engrossed very little attention. They were
warmed with the single word " liberty," the remem-
brance of their having been overrun by Louis XIV.,
and the hopes of humbling his successor. One would
think it scarcely probable, that in the present times
some outlines of the customs and manners of Old
Greece should be revived ; yet it was now seen in
Holland. M. William Van Haren, a young gentle-
man, one of the deputies of the province of Fries-
land to the states-general, composed some alle-
gorical poems to animate the nation against the king
of France. These pieces were full of beautiful
strokes of writing: the author knew well how to
enrich his tongue, and to give it a turn of harmony



The War of 1 741. 115

which indeed it greatly wanted. His verses, though
sublime and allegorical, were understood by the peo-
ple, because they were natural, and the allegory
clear: they were read after divine service, in the
public squares, and even in the villages ; and those
who read them were munificently paid by the audi-
tors, as had been formerly the case with those who
pronounced Homer's pieces in public. Nothing con-
tributed more to inflame the Dutch. It had been pro-
posed to augment the republic's troops with twenty
thousand men; to furnish the queen of Hungary
with efficacious assistance; but the deputies of
Amsterdam were still wavering. While they were
thus undetermined, they received a letter in the
name of a part of the town, called Le Jourdain,
which had always been a turbulent quarter ; and it
was couched in these terms : " Messieurs du Jour-
dain, give this notice to Messieurs the deputies, that
perhaps they may have their throats cut, unless they
consent to the raising of twenty thousand men."
This levy was agreed to, and set on foot some
months after; and then the states had an army of
eighty thousand men.

It did not as yet appear evident that the United
Provinces were to have a stadtholder; his party,
however, privately gained strength. It was easily
foreseen that the same people who so loudly called
out for a war, and forced their governors to aug-
ment their troops, might one day oblige them to give
them a master. But the magistrates, who were most



n6 The War of 1741.

devoted to the English faction, though determined
on a war, were yet more intent on preserving their
authority : they stood in more dread of a stadtholder
than the arms of France. This was evident in the
military promotions made in September, 1742 ; when,
notwithstanding the remonstrances of the provinces
of Groningen and Friesland, who desired that the
prince of Orange should be appointed general of
infantry, the states made him but a lieutenant-
general, a title which the prince rejected with
indignation.

In this violent situation were all the European
powers in the beginning of the year 1743, when
Cardinal Fleury, after having been forced, in a very
old age, notwithstanding his character for peace, to
involve Europe in trouble, departed this life ; he left
the naval and political affairs of France in such a
crisis that it had caused some change in the hitherto
uninterrupted happiness of his life, but it had no
effect upon the tranquillity of his soul. He was at
the time of his death eighty-nine years and seven
months old. The cardinal may be considered as hav-
ing been a happy man, if we only reflect, that from
the truest enumeration, and most exact calculations,
it is proved, according to the course of nature, not
above one man in a hundred and forty contempo-
raries arrives at eighty years of age. But we must
allow, that no man ever ran through a more sin-
gular or fortunate career, since it is well known that
among those who arrive at that age, seldom one in



The War of 1741. 117

a thousand preserves his health, and has a head fit
for business ; and if it be remembered, that the car-
dinal was seventy-three when he assumed the func-
tion of prime minister, at which time of life the
greater part of mankind choose to retire from public
business.

If his good fortune was singular, so was his mod-
eration. Cardinal Ximenes had the riches of a sov-
ereign, and levied armies at his own expense, yet
always continued to wear the Cordelier's habit. Car-
dinal d'Amboise aspired to the papal crown. Wol-
sey in his disgrace, deplored his condition, because
upon the road he had only a hundred and eighty
domestics to attend him. Everyone knows the van-
ity and arrogance of Cardinal Richelieu, and the
immense wealth which Mazarin left behind him.
Cardinal Fleury had nothing left him whereby to be
distinguished, but his modesty ; born to no fortune,
and subsisting merely upon the allowance of one of
his uncles, he expended in beneficent actions what
he received from generosity. His whole income,
when prime minister, was sixty thousand livres, aris-
ing from two benefices; twenty thousand, and no
more, was the produce of his seat in council; and
he had fifteen thousand from the post-office : half
of the sum total he laid out in private offices of char-
ity, and the other half was consigned to the main-
tenance of a moderate house, and a frugal table.
His whole furniture was not worth two thousand
crowns.



iiS The War of 1741.

This simplicity, which contributed so much to his
reputation and fortune, was no constraint upon him.
Men are never apt to constrain themselves so very
long. He had always lived thus entirely employed
in pleasing, and advancing his fortune, by those
amiable qualities which marked his character and
disposition. When he was at court in the office of
almoner to the dauphiness, he gained everybody's
friendship : his conversation was mild and graceful,
mixed with pleasing and lively anecdotes, and some-
times seasoned by a dash of raillery, which, far from
being offensive, had something in it very engaging.
He wrote just as he spoke. There are some notes of
his still extant, written about fifteen days before his
death, which prove that he preserved to the last that
power of endearment. He was praised by all the
ladies about court, without provoking the jealousy or
envy of the men. Louis XIV. had refused him a
bishopric a good while. I have heard him say, that
having at length been promoted to the diocese of
Frejus, when he had no longer any hope of being
advanced, the king addressed him thus : " I have
made you wait longer than I intended, because you
had too many friends, who solicited for you ; and I
was resolved to have the satisfaction of your being
obliged to nobody but me."

Although he had a great number of those
acquaintances commonly called " friends," it was
neither his rule nor his taste to lavish his friendship :
he exhibited only the outward appearances of it, and



The War of 1741. 119

even that within a certain bound which had in it
nothing either false or imposing; being master of
the art of preserving the good will of all mankind,
without entrusting his secrets to anyone : he resigned
his bishopric as soon as he was able, after having


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