Зображення сторінки
PDF
ePub

ANTIQUITI E S.

ibid.

Dialogue

P O E T R Y.

[ocr errors][merged small]

THE

ANNUAL REGISTER,

For the YEAR 1764.

THE

HISTORY

OF

E U R O P E.

CHAP. I.

State of Europe. Disposition of Russia. State of the other northerri

powers. King of Prussia, his alliances. Revolution in political system. Destruction of France. Character of the parliaments of that kingdom. Growth of their power. A

FTER so extensive and so the most considerable of the chris

fanguinary a war as the last, tian powers, in the midst of this it is necessary that Furope should exterior tranquillity, are by no enjoy a long repose, to enable her means in an assured state of do. to recover, in any degree, her for- mestic quiet. Strong internal mer strength and prosperity. Hap- movements subfift, which draw, pily, indeed, every appearance con- for a time at least, their attention curs to assure the stability of a from any schemes of enterprise, peace, which is so much wanted. and any plans of foreign aggran: It is not the worst security for disement. the continuance of this peace, If we examine into the state of that some of the most active and the north, and consider Ruflia, the Vol. VII.

[B]

greateft

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

greatest nation in that quarter, we favour with, I believe, all the nia-
shall see very little reason to ap- tions, with whom she Fias any in-
prehend from her, a design upon tercourse. The emulation, which,
her neighbours. And, with re- for this century past, has subsisted
gard to any offensive intentions amongst all the maritime countries
against Russia, they have long since in augmenting their marine, bas,
ceased to compose a part in the without the exertion of any deep
politics of any power whatever. policy on her side, operated power-
Notwithstanding her permanent fully in her favour; as nature has
strength, and an occasional exer- made her the great magazine of na-
tion of it, that are very menacing, val stores to Furope.
I do not find, that there has, even Nothing thews more clearly,
once, been a plan seriously thought that Ruflia has the strongest politi-
on for the reduction of the great- cal stamina, than that her condition
ness of Russia, ever since the time is such as we have described it,
of Charles XII. which was the pe- whilst her government has under-
riod of her entering into the circle gone very frequent shocks and sud-
of our political system. And this den revolutions, whilst the throne
was rather an attempt to crush her was seldom established with great
in her infancy, than a plan to ob- security to the possessor, and never
struct her further growth, when provided with any found and invari-
once become formidable.

able principle of succession. From that time she has been

At present, we cannot say that growing (not so much, perhaps, Russia is much improved in these as might be expected in learning particulars. On the contrary, noand the arts, but, certainly to thing can be more critical than the a very high degree in fubftantial situation of that government. power, and in all the resources From hence the north may,

in that support it; a strong military a great measure, depend on the force, an increasing commerce, continuance of its tranquillity. prudent, because, for the most Sweden and Denmark have, to all part, a lucrative system of negotia- appearance, very wisely abandontion; and an unbounded influence ed, for a time at least, the characover those nations, with whom she ter of a military people ; and turnhas the nearest connection.

ed their whole attention to their Her friendship has been much domestic improvement. This wife fought, and generally paid for. .plan of conduct will one day prove Her armies have been kept up at the most solid basis of their power. very considerable numbers ; and if They will derive from thence a her troops have not improved, the real strength, superior to what last wat evidently demonstrates they at any time proposed; supethat they have not at all declined rior to what even Sweden, the most from that discipline to which they considerable of these two nations, were formed by Peter the Great. obtained by her famous military That commerce, too, of which exploits in the last century, and in he was the founder, has been far the beginning of the present. This, from languishing fince his death; however, was soon loft, and their and the balance of trade is in her short and unnatural strength was

followed

« НазадПродовжити »