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ere restored by men of the United Provinces; and Locke brought back from his exile in that country the theory on government which had been formed by the Calvinists of the continent, and which made his chief political work the text-book of the friends of free institutions for a century. During the long wars for the security of the new English dynasty, and for the Spanish succession, in all which the republic had little interest of its own, it remained the faithful ally of Great Britain. Gibraltar was taken by ships and troops of the Dutch not less than by those of England: yet its appropriation by the stronger state brought them no corresponding advantage; on the contrary, their exhausted finances and disproportionate public debt crippled their power of self-defence. For these faithful, unexampled, and unrequited services the republic might, at least, expect to find in England a wall of protection. But during the seven years war, in disregard of treaty obligations, its ships we
nnel. Never before had so large a force been seen afloat; and in construction the Spanish ships were equal or superior to the English. Rodney to Lady Rodney, Gibraltar, 7 Feb., 1780. Charles of Spain pictured to himself the British escaping in terror from their houses before the invaders. King George longed to hear that Sir Chs parole of honor never to serve against England, while he would with pleasure serve against France. It was the sentiment of them all. Rodney to Lady Rodney, Gibraltar, 7 Feb., 1780. The immense preparations of the two powers had not even harmed British merchant vessels on their homeward voyages. The troops that were to haepared to take the posts of Pensacola and Mobile, and captured or expelled from Honduras the British logwood cutters. In Europe their first act was the siege of Gibraltar. Still more important were the consequences of the imperious manner in which Great Britain violated the maritime rights of neutrals, substituting its own will
erchant ships as prizes into Portsmouth. This outrage on the Netherlands tended to rouse Chap. XII.} 1779. and unite all parties and all provinces. Everywhere in Europe, and especially in Petersburg, it was the subject of conversation; and the conduct of the Dutch was watched with the intensest curiosity. Swart, minister at Petersburg, to the states-general, 1 and 4 Feb., 1780. But another power beside England had disturbed neutral rights. Fearing that supplies might be carried to Gibraltar, Spain had given an order to bring into Cadiz all neutral ships bound with provisions for the Mediterranean, and to sell their cargoes to the highest bidder. In the last part of the year 1779, the order was applied to the Concordia, a Russian vessel carrying wheat to Barcelona. Harris, who received the news in advance, hurried to Potemkin with a paper in which he proved from this example what terrible things might be expected from the house of Bourbon if they should acquire maritime supe
disproportioned to the service for which they were required. We are come to the series of events which closed the American contest and restored peace to the world. In Europe the sovereigns of Prussia, of Austria, of Russia, were offering their mediation; the united Netherlands were struggling to preserve their neutrality; France was straining every nerve to cope with her rival in the four quarters of the globe; Spain was exhausting her resources for the conquest Chap. XVI.} 1780. of Gibraltar; but the incidents which overthrew the ministry of North, and reconciled Great Britain to America, had their springs in South Carolina. Cornwallis, elated with success and hope, prepared for the northward march which was to conduct him from victory to victory, till he should restore all America south of Delaware to its allegiance. He was made to believe that North Carolina would rise to welcome him, and, in the train of his flatterers, he carried Martin, its former governor, who was to
n. One hope only remained. Minorca having been wrested from the English, he concentrated all the force of Spain in Europe on the one great object of recovering Gibraltar, and held France to her promise not to make peace until that fortress should be given up. With America, therefore, measures for a general peace must begin. A engagement with France except those contained in the public treaties of commerce and alliance. Grenville asked if these obligations extended to the recovery of Gibraltar for Spain; and Franklin answered: It is nothing to America who has Gibraltar. But Franklin saw in Grenville a young statesman ambitious of recommending himself Gibraltar. But Franklin saw in Grenville a young statesman ambitious of recommending himself as an able negotiator; in Oswald, a man who free from interested motives earnestly sought a final settlement of all differences between Great Britain and America. To the former he had no objection, but he would have been loath to lose the latter; and, before beginning to treat of the conditions of peace, he wrote to Shelburne his