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plan. The French Government sent speedy information to that of England, and the ministers took precautions that showed their sense of the magnitude of the danger. Fearing the inadequacy of their own resources, they invited over Austrian and Dutch troops from the Netherlands for the protection of England. The fleet was hastily equipped, and a reward of 10,000l. was offered for the apprehension of Ormond. But the danger had already passed. A great storm in the Bay of Biscay scattered and ruined the Spanish fleet, and the captains deemed themselves only too happy if they could conduct their dismantled and disabled vessels back to some Spanish port. Two ships, containing 300 Spanish soldiers and a few Scotch nobles, outrode the tempest, and reached Scotland in safety, where they were joined by about 2,000 Highlanders. For a time they evaded pursuit, and even notice, in the mountain fastnesses, but on June 10 they were attacked in the valley of Glenshiel and easily crushed.

All hope was now over: Spain had not an ally in the world; her navy was annihilated; three of the greatest European Powers were combined against her; her best army was penned up in Sicily, and she could not enroll more than 15,000 men for her own defence when a French army of 40,000 men, under the command of Berwick, had penetrated into her territory. Berwick, by the great victory of Almanza, had formerly contributed largely to place the sceptre in the hand of Philip. He was the illegitimate son of James II., and, therefore, the brother of the prince whom Philip was now endeavouring to place upon the throne of England, and one of his own sons had entered into the Spanish service, and had been rewarded by a Spanish dukedom. He was, however, beyond all things a soldier, and an almost stoical sentiment of military duty subdued every natural affection. He accepted without hesitation the command which had been refused by Villars, invaded Navarre, subdued the whole province of Guipuscoa, burnt the arsenal and the ships of war that were building at Passages, and afterwards attacked Catalonia. The arsenal of Santona was destroyed;

an English squadron harassed the Spanish coast, and a detachment of English soldiers stormed and captured Vigo. The Austrian army drove the now isolated army in Sicily, after a brave, and in one instance, successful, resistance, from all its posts. Nothing remained but submission, and there was one sacrifice which would make it comparatively easy. All classes now turned their resentment against Alberoni. The jealousy of the nobles, the anger of the provinces at his violent reforms and his neglect of provincial privileges, the arrogance which power and overstrained nerves had produced, the patriotic indignation springing from the disasters he had brought upon Spain had made him bitterly unpopular, and numerous intrigues were hastening his inevitable downfall. The influence of the Regent and of Dubois, the influence of Peterborough, who was then in close communication with the Duke of Parma, the influence of the King's confessor, and the influence of the Queen's nurse, were all made use of, and they soon succeeded. On December 5, 1719, he received an order dismissing him from all his employments, and banishing him from the Spanish soil. Many of the Spanish nobles showed him in this hour of his disgrace a rare consideration, but the King and Queen refused even to see him, and a letter which he wrote remained wholly unnoticed. On his way to the frontier he was arrested, and some important papers which he had appropriated were taken back to Madrid. He was conducted through France, and sailed from thence to Italy, exclaiming bitterly against the ingratitude of the sovereigns he had so long and so faithfully served.

He intended to proceed to Rome, but Pope Clement XI., whom he had deeply offended, forbade him to enter it, and for some time he lived in complete concealment. A copy of the Imitation of St. Thomas à Kempis, which shows by its marginal notes that it was at this time his constant companion, was long preserved in the Ducal Library of Parma.. The hostility of the Spanish Court pursued him, and there were even some steps taken towards depriving him of his cardinal's hat. On the death, however, of Clement XI. he was

invited to assist at the conclave, and, after a short period of seclusion in a monastery, he was admitted into warm favour by Innocent XIII. On the death of that Pope he received ten votes in the conclave. He quarrelled with Benedict XIII., and was obliged during his pontificate to leave Rome, but he returned to high favour under Clement XII. ; was appointed legate at Ravenna, where he distinguished himself by his great works of drainage, and also by a furious quarrel with the little State of San Marino, and was afterwards removed to the legation of Bologna. He at last retired from affairs, and died in 1752 at the great age of eighty-eight, bequeathing the bulk of his fortune to the foundation of a large institution near Placentia for the education of his needy fellow citizens.'

So ended a career which was certainly one of the most remarkable of the eighteenth century. Had there been more of moral principle and less of the recklessness of a gambler in the nature of Alberoni he would have deserved to rank among the greatest of statesmen. He was, however, singularly unfortunate in the latter part of his public life, and his fall was, with good reason, a matter of rejoicing throughout Europe. Perhaps no part of his history is more curiously significant than its close. We can hardly have a more striking illustration of the decline of the theological spirit in Europe than the fact that the Pope was unable to restrain a Christian nation from attacking the Emperor when engaged in the defence of Christendom against the Turks; that the nation which perpetrated this, which a few generations before would have been deemed the most inexpiable of all crimes, was Spain, under the guidance of a cardinal of the

See the Hist. du Cardinal Albe-. roni (1719) by J. Rousset; the notices of Alberoni in the Memoirs of St. Simon and Duclos, and in the Letters of the President de Brosses; his own apologies printed in the Nouvelle Biographie Générale (art. 'Alberoni'); the Stanhope correspondence, in the appendix to the second volume of Lord Stanhope's History of England;

Voltaire's Hist. de Charles XII., and especially the admirable history of Alberoni in Coxe's Memoirs of the Spanish Kings of the House of Bourbon, vol. ii. In private life Alberoni seems to have been irreproachable, and many of the charges St. Simon and others have brought against him have been successfully refuted.

Church, and that that cardinal lived to be the favourite and the legate of the Pope.

With the dismissal of Alberoni the troubles of Europe gradually subsided. Philip, after a short negotiation, acceded to the Quadruple Alliance, and Sicily and Sardinia were speedily evacuated. Many difficulties of detail, however, and many hesitations remained, and the negotiations still dragged slowly on for some years. A congress was held at Cambray in 1724, and several new treaties of alliance were made confirming or elucidating the Quadruple Alliance. The singular good fortune of the Whig ministry during the struggle I have described is very evident. The Hanoverian policy of the King on the question of Bremen and Verden had exposed England to a danger of the most serious kind; and, but for the premature death of Charles XII., and the steady, unwavering loyalty of the French Regent to an alliance which was entirely opposed to the traditions of French policy, it might easily have proved fatal to the dynasty. The general result of the foreign policy of England was undoubtedly very favourable to the Whig cause. The Whig party completed the work which the Peace of Utrecht had left unfulfilled; the commanding position which England occupied in the course of the struggles that have been related, and the very large amount of success she achieved, added to the reputation of the country; the pacification of Europe, and especially the alliance with France, withdrew from the Jacobites all immediate prospect of foreign assistance, and without such assistance it was not likely that Jacobite insurgents could successfully encounter disciplined armies. Several clouds, it is true, still hung upon the horizon. In the North the storm of war raged for some time after it was appeased in the South. An alliance had been made between Sweden and England. By the mediation of the latter, Sweden made in turn treaties of peace with Hanover, Prussia, Denmark, and Poland; but the war with the Czar continued, and the coast, in spite of the presence of a British fleet, was fearfully devastated. Peace was at last made in this quarter at Nystadt in September 1721, on

terms extremely favourable to Russia and extremely disastrous to Sweden. A bitter jealousy had arisen between the Empire and the maritime Powers on account of the Ostend Company, established by the former, to trade with the East Indies. The question of the cession of Gibraltar to Spain, which had been imprudently raised during the late war, continued in a very unsatisfactory state. The obscure and secret negotiation which had at that time been carried on, partly through the intervention of the French Regent, led, as might have been expected, to grave misunderstanding. The English Government maintained that the offer had been made only in order to avert war with Spain, and that the hostilities which followed annulled it. The Spanish Government treated the offer as unconditional, and declared that as soon as peace was restored England was bound to cede the fortress. The French Regent, through whose hands some of the negotiations passed, on the whole, supported the Spanish demand. Much negotiation on the subject took place. Propositions were made for an exchange of Gibraltar for Florida, but they found no favour with the Spanish Court. Stanhope, though apparently willing to cede Gibraltar, soon perceived that the English Parliament would never consent, and there was much agitation in the country at the suspicions that such a project had been entertained. But George I., who appears to have been perfectly indifferent to Gibraltar, wrote a letter to the King of Spain in June 1721, which afterwards gave rise to very grave complications. Having spoken of the prospect of a cordial union between the two nations, he added, 'I do no longer balance to assure your Majesty of my readiness to satisfy you with regard to your demand touching the restitution of Gibraltar, promising you to make use of the first favourable opportunity to regulate this article with the assent of my Parliament.' This letter, which was for some years kept secret, was very naturally regarded as a full admission of the claims of the Spanish King, and, as we shall see, it hereafter led to serious dangers. The

See on this negotiation Coxe's Life of Walpole, i. 304-309; Ralph's

Use and Abuse of Parliaments, 362– 365; Lord Stanhope's Hist. of

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