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EIGHTEEN years ago, when the ideas; that the revolution was neceshrone of Charles X. was overturned sary to save the liberties of France midst the universal exultation of from destruction; that a new era had he liberal party in this country, we opened upon mankind with the fire of entured, amidst the general trans- the Barricades; that loyalty was no orts, to arraign the policy and con- longer required when the interest of lemn the morality of the change. mankind to be well governed was We pleaded strongly, in several generally felt; and that a throne surArticles,* that that great event fore- rounded by republican institutions poded nothing but a long series was the best form of government, bf calamities to France and to and the only one in which the monEurope; that liberty had been ren- archical principle could any longer Hered impossible in a country which, be tolerated in the enlightened states fasting aside all the bonds of reli- of modern Europe. gion and loyalty, had left no other With how much vehemence these oundation for government but force; principles were maintained by the and that the external peace of the whole whig and liberal party in Great Continent would be put in imminent Britain, need be told to none who peril by an ardent military po- recollect the rise of the dynasty of pulation, heated by the successful , the Barricades in the year 1830. To issue of one great revolt, placed in those who do not, ample evidence of the midst of monarchies in which the the general delusion, and of the perfeudal institutions and chivalrous severance with which it was combated, feelings were still in ascendency. will be found in the pages of this We doubted the stability of a govern- Journal for 1831 and 1832. Time ment founded on the success of one has rolled on, and brought its wonted well-organised urban insurrection: we changes on its wings. More quickly distrusted the fidelity of men who had than we anticipated, the perilous begun their career by treachery and nature of the convulsion which had treason. Nominally the aggressor, proved victorious was demonstrated we concluded that Charles X. was -more clearly than we ventured to really on the defensive ; he attempted predict, was the necessity of Prince a coup d'état, because government in Polignac's ordinances demonstrated. any other way had become impos- It soon became apparent that France sible. We were told in reply, that could be governed only by force. these were antiquated and exploded The government of Louis Philippe
* “On the French Revolutions," Nos. I.–V. Jan.-May, 1831. VOL. LXIII.-NO. CCCXC.
was a continual denial of its origin- been marked, had passed into the an incessant effort to crush the spirit page of history, that is, were become which had raised it. The repeated familiar to a tenth part only of the and sanguinary disorders in Paris; active population. To those who did the two dreadful insurrections in learn it from this limited source, it Lyons; the awful drowning of the was known chiefly from the volumes revolt of the cloister of St Méry in of M. Louis Blanc, who, in his “Ten blood; demonstrated, before two years years of the reign of Louis Philippe,' had elapsed, that the government had painted that monarch in no other felt the necessity of extinguishing the light but as one of the most deceitful visionary ideas which had been and sanguinary tyrants who ever disevoked, as the means of elevating it- graced humanity. Thus the lessons self into power. More than once it of experience were lost to the vast stood on the edge of the abyss; and majority of the active citizens. The it was saved only by the vigour of necessity of keeping at peace, which the sovereign, and the newly awakened Louis Philippe so strongly felt, and terrors of the holders of property, so energetically asserted, became in which prevented them from openly the course of years an insupportable coalescing with the determined repub- restraint upon a people fraught with licans, who aimed at overturning all revolutionary ideas, and heated by the the institutions of society, and realis- glowing recollections of the Empire. ing in the nineteenth century the (A nation containing six millions of visions of Robespierre and Babæuf 'separate landed proprietors,* the in the eighteenth. In the course of great majority of whom were at the this protracted struggle, the new plough, and not possessed of six government felt daily more and more pounds a-year in the world, necesthe necessity of resting their authority sarily chafes against any power which on force, and detaching it from the imposes the restraints of order and anarchical doctrines, amidst the tri- peace on the appetite for plunder and umphs of which it had taken its rise. the lust of conquest. This was the Paris was declared in a state of siege ; true secret of the fall of the dynasties the ordinances of Polignac were re- of the Restoration and the Barricades. enacted with additional rigour; the They fell because they kept the nation military establishment of the country at peace with its neighbours, and at was doubled; its expenditure raised peace with itself, because they terfrom nine hundred millions to fifteen minated the dream of foreign conhundred millions francs; an incessant quest, and checked the visions of and persevering war waged with the internal utopia ; because they did not, democratic press; and Paris surround like Napoleon, open the career of arms ed by a chain of forts, which effectually to every man in the country capable prevented any other will from govern- of carrying a musket; or, like Robesing France but that of the military pierre, pursue the supposed advantage who were in possession of their bas- of the working classes by the destructions. Such was the result to the tion of every interest above them in cause of freedom in France of the society.) Had either Charles X. or triumph of the Barricades.
Louis Philippe been foreign conBut in eighteen years an entirely new querors, and the state of Europe had generation rises to the active direc- permitted of their waging war with tion of affairs. In 1848, the personal success, they would have lived and experience, the well-founded fears, died on the throne of France, and left the sights of woe which had retained an honoured crown to their successors. the strength of France round the There never were monarchs who standards of the Barricades, were mowed down the population and forgotten. The fearful contests with wasted the resources of France like anarchy by which the first years Napoleon and Louis XIV.; but as long of the reign of Louis Philippe had as they were successful, and kept open
5,468,000 in 1836, which must be at least 6,000,000 in 1848.—Statistique de la France--(Agriculture, 84-89.)