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Russia to perform any conditions to which she might submit.
*This engagement had been allowed to sleep; I will not say that it was forgotten, but no one seemed disposed to revert to it. But after the twenty-second Protocol, when Piedmont was allowed to threaten Austria, and neither England nor France defended her, Buol got alarmed. He feared that Austria might be left exposed to the vengeance of Russia on the north and east, and to that of the Italian Liberals on the South. An alliance with France and England, though only for a specified purpose, at least would relieve Austria from the appearance of insulation. She would be able to talk of the two greatest Powers in Europe as her allies, and would thus acquire a moral force which might save her from attack. He recalled, therefore, the old engagement to the recollection of Clarendon and Louis Napoleon, and summoned them to fulfil it. I do not believe that either of them was pleased. But the engagement was formal, , and its performance, though open to misconstruction, and intended by Austria to be misconstrued, was attended by some advantages, though different ones, to France and to England. So both your Government and ours complied.'
Tuesday, May 20.—The Tocquevilles and Rivet drank tea with us.
I mentioned to Tocqueville the subject of my conversations with Cousin and H.
'I agree with Cousin,' he said. The attempt to turn our national activity into speculation and commerce has
often been made, but has never had any permanent
The men who make these sudden fortunes are not happy, for they are always suspected of friponnerie, and the Government to which they belong is suspected of friponnerie. Still less happy are those who have attempted to make them, and have failed. And those who have not been able even to make the attempt are envious and sulky. So that the whole world becomes suspicious and dissatisfied.
* And even if it were universal, mere material prosperity is not enough for us. Our Government must give us something more: must gratify our ambition, or, at least, our vanity'
*The Government,' said Rivet, ‘has been making a desperate plunge in order to escape from the accusation of friponnerie. It has denounced in the “Moniteur” the faiseurs; it has dismissed a poor aide-de-camp of Jérôme's for doing what everybody has been doing ever since the coup d'état. When Ponsard's comedy, which was known to be a furious satire on the agioteurs, was first played, Louis Napoleon took the whole orchestra and pit stalls, and filled them with people instructed to applaud every allusion to the faiseurs. And he himself stood in his box, his body almost out of it, clapping most energetically every attack on them.'
*At the same time,' I said, 'has he not forced the Orleans Company and the Lyons Company to buy the Grand Central at much more than its worth ? And was not that done in order to enable certain faiseurs to realise their gains ?'
'He has forced the Orleans Company,' said Rivet, “to buy up, or rather to amalgamate the Grand Central ; but I will not say at more than its value. The amount to be paid is to depend on the comparative earnings of the different lines, for two years before and two years after the purchase.'
* But,' I said, is it not true, first, that the Orleans Company was unwilling to make the purchase? and, secondly, that thereupon the Grand Central shares rose much in the market?'
Both these facts,' answered Rivet, are true.'
• Do you believe,' I said to Tocqueville, ‘H.'s history of the Tripartite Treaty?'
*I do,' he answered. I do not think that at the time when it was made we liked it. It suited you, who wish to preserve the statu quo in Europe, which keeps us your inferiors, or, at least, not your superiors. You have nothing to gain by a change. We have. The statu quo does not suit us. The Tripartite Treaty is a sort of chain—not a heavy one, or a strong one—but one which should not have put on if we could have avoided it.'
Do you agree,' I asked Tocqueville, with Lafosse, Cousin, and H. as to the effect in Paris of our opposition to the Suez Canal ?'
'I agree,' he answered, in every word that they have said. There is nothing that has done you so much mischief in France, and indeed in Europe.
'I am no engineer ; I should be sorry to pronounce a decided opinion as to the feasibility or the utility of the
canal; but your opposition makes us believe that it is practicable.
* Those among us,' I answered, 'who fear it, sometimes found their fear on grounds unconnected with its practicability. They say that it is a political, not a commercial, scheme. That the object is to give to French engineers and French shareholders a strip of land separating Egypt from Syria, and increasing the French interest in Egypt.'
• What is the value,' answered Tocqueville, ‘of a strip of land in the desert where no one can live? And why are the shareholders to be French? The Greeks, the Syrians, the Dalmatians, the Italians, and the Sicilians are the people who will use the canal, if anybody uses it. They will form the bulk of the shareholders, if shareholders there are.
My strong suspicion is, that if you had not opposed it, there never would have been any shareholders, and that if you now withdraw your opposition, and let the scheme go on until calls are made, the subscribers, who are ready enough with their names as patriotic manifestations against you as long as no money is to be paid, will withdraw en masse from an undertaking which, at the very best, is a most hazardous
*As to our influence in Egypt, your journal shows that it is a pet project of the Viceroy. He hopes to get money and fame from it.
You imitate both his covetousness and his vanity, and throw him for support
Paris, May 21.—The Tocquevilles and Chrzanowski drank tea with us.
We talked of the French iron floating batteries.
'I saw one at Cherbourg,' said Tocqueville, “and talked much with her commander. He was not in good
1.Chrzanowski has passed thirty years fighting against or for the Russians. He began military life in 1811 as a sous-lieutenant of artillery in the Polish corps which was attached to the French army. With that army he served during the march to Moscow, and the retreat. At the peace, what remained of his corps became a part of the army of the kingdom of Poland. He had attained the rank of major in that army when the insurrection on the accession of Nicholas broke out. About one hundred officers belonging to the staff of the properly Russian army were implicated, or supposed to be implicated, in that insurrection, and were dismissed, and their places were supplied from the army of the kingdom of Poland. Among those so transferred to the Russian army was Chrzanowski. He was attached to the staff of Wittgenstein, and afterwards of Marshal Diebitsch, in the Turkish campaigns of 1828 and 1829. In 1830 he took part with his countrymen in the insurrection against the Muscovites, and quitted Poland when it was finally, absorbed in the Russian Empire. A few years after a quarrel was brewing between England and Russia. Muscovite agents were stirring up Persia and Affghanistan against us, and it was thought that we might have to oppose them on the shores of the Black Sea. Chrzanowski was attached to the British Embassy at Constantinople, and was employed for some years in ascertaining what assistance Turkey, both in Europe and in Asia, could afford to us. In 1849 he was selected by Charles Albert to command the army of the kingdom of Sardinia.
• That army was constituted on the Prussian system, which makes every man serve, and no man a soldier. It was, in fact, a militia. The men were enlisted for only fourteen months; at the end of that time they were sent home, and were recalled when they were wanted, having forgotten their military training and acquired the habits of cottiers and artisans. They had scarcely any officers, or even sous-officers, that knew anything of their business. The drill-sergeants required to be drilled. The generals, and indeed the greater part of the officers, were divided into hostile factions—Absolutists, Rouges, Constitutional Liberals, and even Austrians —for at that time, in the exaggerated terror occasioned by the revolutions of 1848, Austria and Russia were looked up to by the greater part of the noblesse of the Continent as the supporters of order against Mazzini, Kossuth, Ledru Rollin, and Palmerston. The Absolutists and the Austrians made