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Of the loyalifts, general Burgoyne thus obferves" Many of them had taken refuge in "Canada the preceding winter, and others had
joined us as we advanced. The various in"terefts which influenced their actions, render"ed all arrangement of them impracticable. "One man's views went to the profit he was "to enjoy when his corps fhould be complete; "another, to the protection of the diftrict in "which he refided; a third was wholly in"tent upon revenge against his perfonal ene"mies; and all of them were repugnant even "to an idea of fubordination. Hence, the fet"tlement who should act as a private man, and "who as an officer, or in whofe corps either "fhould be, was feldom fatisfactorily made "among themfelves; and as furely as it failed, "fucceeded a reference to the commander in
chief, which could not be put by, or delega "ted to another hand, without diffatisfaction, "increase of confufion, and generally a lofs of "fuch fervices as they were really fit for; viz. "fearching for cattle, afcertaining the practica
bility of routes, clearing roads, and guiding "detachments or columns upon the march." He farther obferved, that " the interefts and "the paffions of the revolted Americans, con"center in the caufe of the congrefs, and thofe "of the loyalifts break and fubdivide into va"rious purfuits, with which the caufe of the "king has little or nothing to do.”
From thefe and other circumftances above CHAP. XI. detailed, even prejudice itfelf ought to allow a due fhare of praife to general Burgoyne, for maintaining his refolution and perfeverance fo long, rather than to wound his character by cenfure, either as a foldier, a man of honor and humanity, or a faithful fervant to his king.
But talents, valor, or virtue, are seldom a fecurity against the vindictive spirit of party, or the refentment that refults from the failure of favorite political projects. Thus, though the military abilities of general Burgoyne had been confpicuous, and his fervices acknowledged by his country, yet from the mortification of the monarch, the court, and the people of England, on the difgrace of their arms at Saratoga, he was not only fuffered, but obliged to retire.
Though the marked refentment of adminif tration was long kept up againft this unfortunate officer, he did not spend all the remainder of his days in private and literary pursuits. It is true he never again acted in a military capacity; but time relieved the prefent oppreffion, when he again took his feat in parliament, and with manly eloquence, not only defended the rights and liberties of his native ifle, against the arbitrary systems in vogue, but asserted the jus tice and propriety of American oppofition.
This he did with becoming dignity, and an impartiality which he never might have felt, but from the failure of his northern expedition. The reputation the American arms acquired by this defeat, not only humbled the proud tone of many British officers besides general Burgoyne, but did much to haften the alliance with France, and brought forward events that accelerated the independence of America.
Obfervations on the Conduct of the British Parliament, previous to the Capture of Burgoyne.-The ineffectual Efforts of the Commiflioners fent to America, in consequence of Lord North's Conciliatory Bill-Their Attempts to corrupt Individuals and Public Bodies.-Negociation broken off.-Manifesto published by the Commiffioners-Counter Declaration by Congrefs.-Sir William Howe repairs to England.
WHILE America gloried in her recent fucceffes against the northern army, and was making all poffible preparations for vigorous action at the southward, the coercive system in Britain was fo far from being relaxed, that the most severe measures were urged with bitternefs and acrimony. The fpeeches of the king were in the fame tone of defpotifm as formerly: the addreffes of parliament were in the usual ftyle of compliment and applause; as if they had little elfe to do, but to keep each other in good humor, until alienation was complete, and the colonies fo far connected with other powers, that there could be no hope of reconciliation.
But though a unison of sentiment, and a perfect conformity to the royal will, previous to
the news of Burgoyne's defeat, appeared in the majority of both houfes of parliament, yet the meafures of the miniftry were, as ufual, warmly opposed by some gentlemen of the first abilities in the nation. Several of the principal nobility were in the minority, and urged an' accommodation before America fhould be irretrievably loft. It was recommended to the minifter, "rather to forge bands of amity for the minds, "than chains for the bodies of Americans.” The prefent moment of uncertainty with regard to fuccefs, was urged as the proper season for giving the most unequivocal proofs of cordiality, by requesting his majefty to order a ceffation of hoftilities, and the immediate adoption of measures for accommodation.*
Mr. Fox, whofe powers of oratory were the admiration of the world, not only reafoned against their measures, but ridiculed the miniftry in the most pointed manner, for their ignorance of America from the outfet of the controverfy. He alleged, "that they had mifta"ken the extent of the thirteen colonics, and "confidered the Maffachusetts as including the "whole." Nor were they lefs mistaken in the weight of oppofition they had to encounter. He obferved, "they had ever been blind to the "confequences of their own measures, or they
* Debates in parliament, before the news of the termination of the northern campaign reached England.