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‘ [399] wonder,’ said Choiseul to Stanley, ‘that your great
chap. XVII.} 1761. June.
Pitt should be so attached to the acquisition of Canada. The inferiority of its population will never suffer it to be dangerous; and being in the hands of France, it will always be of service to you to keep your colonies in that dependence which they will not fail to stake off, the moment Canada shall be ceded.’1 And he readily consented to abandon that province to England.

The restitution of the merchant-ships, which the English cruisers had seized before the war, was justly demanded. They were afloat on the ocean, under every guaranty of safety; they were the property of private citizens, who knew nothing and could know nothing of the diplomatic disputes of the two countries. The capture was unjustifiable by every reason of equity and public law. ‘The cannon,’ said Pitt, ‘has settled the question in our favor; and in the absence of a tribunal, this decision is a sentence.’ ‘The last cannon has not yet been fired,’ retorted Bussy; and destiny showed in the shadowy distance still other desperate wars between the nations for dominion and for equality on the seas.

France desired to escape from the humiliating condition of demolishing the harbor of Dunkirk. ‘Since England has acquired the dominion of the seas,’ said Pitt to Bussy, ‘I myself fear Dunkirk but little; but the people regard its demolition as an eternal monument of the yoke imposed on France.’2

Choiseul was ready to admit concessions with regard to Dunkirk, if France could retain a harbor in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, with the freedom of the

1 Second Thoughts, or Observations upon Lord Abingdon's Thoughts.

2 Flassan, VI. 403, 405.

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