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[708] for the consequences of that privateer's escape. England did not understand this reserve, which was dictated by prudence, or perhaps she believed that America would never be in a condition to enforce her demands, of which she then only laid down the principle. She paid dear for this mistake; the world knows how, at the close of the war, the government of the United States sustained the action of its minister, by taking up the question of damages caused by the Alabama; how the Senate rejected the first treaty as being too favorable to England, and how, after having paralyzed English policy for several years by threats of war, America imposed the alternative of arbitration upon the British cabinet, which terminated at Geneva by an award against England.

Meanwhile, the Confederate agents, encouraged by the success they had met with in fitting out the Alabama, and finding themselves, through the instrumentality of the loan, in possession of large sums of money, undertook to procure the construction of two vessels at Messrs. Lairds' ship-yard of a still more formidable character, being two iron-clads with revolving turrets; these powerful machines of war were to be completed in the year 1863, but the English government, which until then had sinned chiefly through negligence, stimulated by new representations on the part of Mr. Adams, and appreciating at last the obligations imposed upon it as a neutral, determined to prevent their equipment. It will be seen, when our narrative shall have brought us down to 1863, what means it had to employ in order to accomplish this object.

We have no occasion to speak in this place of the intercourse of the belligerents with other European powers, as it presents no phase of special interest. The vessels of war ordered of M. Armand of Bordeaux by the Confederates were not finished until 1863, and the sympathies of the French government for the cause of the South were rendered powerless by the determination of England not to recognize the Confederates as a new power so long as their political existence was in question.

We will, therefore, proceed without any further delay to consider the mutual relations of the belligerents.

Whatever may have been the cause of quarrel which had armed

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