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1698. FIRST TREATY OF PARTITION, 115
however, to the house of Austria, to see so rich a kingdom pass from under its name and rule. Although the young prince of Bavaria was of its blood, still an Austrian archduke was considered by the emperor as a far more fitting heir to the Spanish throne. Both Austria and France had claims independent of the daughter of Philip IV. : Louis XIII. had married an infanta of Spain; the emperor Ferdinand, fathe. of Leopold, had espoused her sister. Here again were jarring rights; but the house of Austria prevailed; and Charles II. was induced, some time previous to the treaty of Ryswick, to destroy the testament in favor of Bavaria, and to promise that his bequest should fall upon an archduke, the son of Austria.
During these intrigues, France, being at war with Spain, had no opportunity of acquiring influence with the monarch or the nation, or of furthering its claims to the succession. No doubt this consideration was one of the motives which rendered Louis So anxious for peace. As soon as it was concluded, he dispatched the marquis d'Harcourt to Madrid, in order to learn the state of the court, of the king's mind, the nation's leaning, and to make the most of any advantage. Harcourt though an intriguing, able, and winning negotiator, could gain no footing. The queen was Austrian in heart, and monopolized all influence. The ambassador was thus obliged to use threats, and so keep the Spanish monarch from declaring openly in favor of either an Austrian or Bavarian prince.
In 1698, the duke of Portland came on an embassy to Paris. He was an accomplished personage, and won so much on the French court, that it became the rage to know and entertain him. Even Louis was fascinated, and forgot the usual haughtiness with which he treated foreign envoys. Portland suggested the difficulties of the Spanish succession. They were discussed; and it was agreed that a treaty of partition, for dividing the Spanish monarchy after the death of Charles, was the only means for preserving peace. There is much that is inexplicable in the negotiation of this treaty, as given by De Torcy. According to that writer, Louis first put forth boldly his grandson's claims to the Spanish crown; and king William did not object, provided the dominions in Flanders and Italy were separated from it. And yet in a little time after we find the French king no longer insisting upon either Spain or Flanders, but contenting himself with Naples as the French share of the spoil. Was Louis insincere in this, merely amusing William, whilst Harcourt was pushing his advantages! or had the spirit and hopes of the French monarch fallen so low, that he determined to avoid war at all hazards? Certain it is, that the partition treaty was concluded, which
gave Spain and the Indies, as well as Flanders, to the electoral prince of Bavaria, and Milan to the archduke Charles, reserving merely Naples for the prince representing the rights of France, namely, the duc d’Anjou, second son of the dauphin. This treaty, despite of all concealment, reached the ears of the king of Spain. Austria, excluded by its stipulation, had too great an interest in acquainting him. Alive to his country's dignity, and fired with the insult offered to Spanish pride in thus dismembering the monarchy, and to himself in dividing his spoils without consulting him, and in his lifetime, Charles II, made, a will, bequeathing the undivided empire to the prittee of Bavaria. In three months after (February, 1699), this-infant died, and the work both of the partition treaty and the testament had to be renewed. . Louis XIV. showed the same apparent disinterestedness and moderation. Another treaty was concluded betwixt him and king William ; by which the dauphin, in addition to Naples, was to have Lorraine, the reigning prince of that duchy getting Milan in lieu; whilst the archduke Charles, second son of the emperor, was to succeed to Spain and Flanders. This second treaty of partition leads one, even more than the first, to doubt the sincerity of Louis, whose object in thus playing Machiavel must have been to lull the vigilance of Dutch and English, as well as to irritate Charles II. It was hoped, perhaps, that the Spanish king and nation, angry with all parties, would have taken the surest mode of preventing the dismemberment of the monarchy, by bequeathing it to a prince of France, which court was most capable and most at hand to enforce such a claim. With this view, however, it was necessary that the emperor should join in the treaty of partition; an act of abandonment that must have alienated the Spanish king from the house of Austria. Hence came Austria's large share in the partition; a bait to insure her adhesion. The emperor, however, equally insincere, encouraged France to conclude the treaty, knowing how the circumstance would indispose the king of Spain; and, upon learning its conclusion, hesitated to accept it himself, making objections to gain time. In the mean time, his envoy pressed the king of Spain to make a testament in favor of the arch duke. The king was at the moment not unwilling; but the emperor failed to act boldly and frankly, to send his son or to provide troops; and Charles, who saw the weakness of Austria both in council and in resources, recurred to the thoughts of a French prince for his heir. Harcourt had, in the mean time, gained the principal noblesse to support the French
1701. ENGLISH PRETENDER ACKNOWLEDGED. 117
interest, and, above all, the papal nuncio and the pope himself exerting themselves for the house of Bourbon, the dying Charles followed their injunctions, and by a written testament bequeathed his dominions to Philip duke of Anjou, second son of the dauphin of France. In a month after this act, Charles expired, on the 1st of November, 1700. The only doubt now remaining was, whether Louis XIV. would accept the will of the late king of Spain in favor of his grandson, or whether he would adhere to the treaty of partition. There was a long debate respecting this in his touncil, which council consisted but of three ministers, the thancellor Pontchartrain, the duc de Beauvilliers, and Torcy. They were divided in opinion; but the dauphin, “drowned as he habitually was in apathy and fat,” says St. Simon, gathered warmth and energy on this occasion, and spoke •loquently in behalf of his son's rights. Madame de Mainenon, who had also a voice in this council, adopted the same riews; and Louis decided. The young duc d'Anjou instantly Yocupied a chamber of state; had his train borne up; assumed the golden fleece, thus taking the insignia of monarch of Spain; the court and king acknowledging him as such. In December he departed to take possession of his new kingdom. The emperor's indignation, in the mean time, burst forth. King William, equally mortified, but calm in his measures as in his demeanor, demanded explanations. He was hampered by the prévalence in parliament of the tories, who deprecated continental connexion or war, and who were loud in- their clamors against the partition treaties. In February, 1701, the mareschal de Boufflers surprised the principal Spanish towns in Flanders, making prisoners such of the garrisons as happened to be Dutch. This was effected through the connivance of the elector of Bavaria, governor of these provinces. It was the subject of fresh alarms to Holland. But England, under tory influence, still hesitated, and seemed to view the aggrandizement of the house of Bourbon with a culpable indifference. A piece of fatuity in Louis destroyed this apathy of England, so vital to him in the present circumstances, and so galling to William. James II. dying about this time at St. Germain's, his son was acknowledged king of Eng and by the French court. This was an insult and a defiance to Great Britain; and Louis showed in it as much idle and imprudent hardihood, as in the partition treaties he had displayed a want of pride, supposing them not to have been dictated by dissimulation. The consequence was, that the national animosity against France and Louis was aroused in the English mind; the tories, unable to stem the tide, went with it; and king William, though bowed in spirit by disease, still rallied under the influence of his old anti-Gallican zeal, and set himself strenuously to the work that he most loved, the formation of a league against the ambition of France. Still, his demands were not exorbitant: he required chiefly, that the French garrisons should be removed from the Spanish towns in Flanders; that Ostend and Nieuport should be put as sureties into the hands of England; and that, by a solemn treaty, it should be declared, that none of the present dominions of Spain should ever be annexed to France. These proposals, so modest, when considered as but replacing the provisions of the partition treaty that Louis had agreed to, were nevertheless rejected with contempt by that monarch, and styled insolent and arrogant. The good fortune of the Spanish succession had resuscitated his ancient pride. He forgot the enfeebled state of his kingdom, which had made him stoop to Savoy, rendered him eager to accept terms at Ryswick, and even humble in endeavoring to preserve peace since. Spain was necessarily detached from any new alliance against him. With England, Holland, and the empire, he thought himself, maugre his financial distresses, not unequal to comete. . p Thus commenced the war of the succession, “the only just one,” says Duclos, “that Louis ever undertook. The emperor, no longer occupied by hostilities with Turkey, was now much more formidable than before. The duke of Hanover, elevated some years since to the electorate, was grateful for the favor. The elector of Brandenburg was honored with the title of king of Prussia, and these two German princes joined against France, which numbered amongst its allies the electors of Bavaria and Cologne. The emperor began the war in 1701 by pouring a large army into Italy, under the command of prince Eugene. This young prince of the house of Savoy had been destined to the ecclesiastical state. He asked an abbaye of Louis, who refused him; a circumstance that the French monarch had ample cause to remember and regret. Eugene flung off his demi-ecclesiastical habit, and, entering the military service of the emperor, distinguished himself in those wars of Austria against the Turks which ended with the peace of Carlowitz. Mareschal Villars had been his comrade in the imperial ranks. Eugene marked hi first campaign in Italy by defeating Catinat, and taking Wileroy prisoner in the town of Cremona. King William, the soul of the confederacy against France, was preparing to take the field. Already, however, his healtn 1702. wAR OF THE SUCCESSION. 119
was sinking. Meeting with a fall from his horse, a fever was the consequence, which carried him off, at his palace of Kensington, in May, 1702. The chief reproach brought by the French against him was, that he showed no religious feeling in his last moments, and this because of the absence of the army of prelates and confessors, the pride, pomp, and circumstance of popery, with which Louis thought it necessary te redeem a life of dissoluteness. The English tory writers more inveterate, have shed upon William all the gall of faction. They upbraid him with the unamiableness and reserve of a weak constitution. They accuse him loudly of tolerance, and cannot forgive him for having saved the liberties of England, and breathed his last breath in defending those of Europe. The mantle of William fell, however, upon the duke of Marlborough; a general bred in the best school of warfare under Turenne, and who was as superior to the monarch in military talent and political address, as he was inferior in lofty, generous, and disinterested views. Intrusted with the chief command by queen Anne, Marlborough roused the spir. its of the Dutch, who had not yet recovered the loss of their prince, and entered on the campaign in Flanders. Even in that early part of his career, he would have stricken one of those master blows which afterwards distinguished him. He proposed attacking the mareschal de Boufflers at Beringhem; and Berwick allows that, had Marlborough had his will, the French would have been defeated. But the commissioners of the states distrusted the English general, yet new to fame, and the campaign of 1702 passed in Flanders without any remarkable results. On the Rhine the imperialists had taken divers towns, without being troubled by Catinat, who kept the other side of the river. Villars, a more active general, with the baton of a mareschal in view, spied from his camp on one bank the moment that the enemy quitted their positions on the other. The prince of Baden, who commanded, thought little precaution needed, the French having shown little vigor during the year, and having now a bridge to cross, a tedious operation for an army, ere they could arrive to disturb his retreat. Willars, however, did make this unlooked-for attempt. His infantry were unable to reach that of the imperialists, but the cavalry of both armies met; the French took their enemies at a disadvantage, and defeated them in the plain of Friedlingen. An action of similar magnitude took place in Italy, at Luzara, brought about also by a surprise; but here the prince Eugene had the advantage. The most decisive blow was