Page images

remède éloignée, car, par suite des formes légales à 1830 observer, 3. mois, et peut-être un plus long espace de temps, seront requis pour obtenir à cet égard des résultats, et il est peu probable, qu'alors encore elles rendent à l'ordre les lieux de l'insurrection sans l'appui des armes.

Je suis chargé, M. le Comte, de prier votre Excellence de vouloir porter cet exposé fidèle de la situation actuelle de la Belgique à la connoissance de Son Auguste Souverain, qui, ma Cour ose l'espérer, ne se refusera pas à l'accueillir avec faveur, et à lui consacrer l'attention, que mérite l'importance de la matière.

Et comme l'assistance des Alliés du Roi pourra seule rétablir la tranquillité dans les Provinces Méridionales des Pays-Bas, j'ai en même temps reçu l'ordre de demander qu'il plaise à Sa Majesté Britannique de commander à cette fin l'envoi immédiat du nombre nécessaire de Troupes dans les Provinces Méridionales des Pays-Bas, dont l'arrivée retardée pourrait gravement compromettre les intérêts de ces Provinces, et ceux de l'Europe entière.

En m'acquittant par la présente des intentions de mon Gouvernement, j'ai l'honneur d'informer votre Excellence qu'une semblable Communication est^adressée à la Prusse, à l'Autriche, et à la Russie, qui ayant également signé les 8 Articles ci-dessus mentionnés, sont appelés, ainsi que l'Angleterre, à maintenir le Royaume des Pays-Bas, et l'état actuel de Europe tel qu'il est établi par les Traités, et qui sans doute jugeront convenable de se concerter dans ces circonstances entre elles, et avec la Grande Bretagne et la France; concert dont l'envoi immédiat des Troupes devrait toutefois être entièrement indépendant. Je saisis, etc.


[blocks in formation]


Extrait d'une Dépêche de Sir Charles Bagot transmise à Lord Aberdeen à Londres, le 15 Octobre 1830 (arrivée à Londres le 18 Octobre).

The Hague, 15th October, 1830

I was this morning invited by the Minister of Foreign Affairs to an interview with him, to which were also invited the Ministres of Austria, Russia, and Prussia.

As soon as we had assembled at the Foreign Office, M. de Verstolk informed us, that he had been directed by the King to acquaint us, that since the period at which His Majesty had thought it incumbent upon him to address to the 4 Powers, which had signed the 8 Articles of London, a request that they would appoint Plenipotentiaries to whom might be referred, in case such reference should become necessary, the modifications which it might be found expedient to make in the Fundamental Law, the rebellion in the Belgian Provinces had made such rapid progress, and had assumed so menacing an attitude, that it was now very uncertain whether either the Deputies of the States - General would meet in sufficient numbers on Monday next to proceed to business, or the Commission which had been appointed by the King to report upon the modifications to be made in the Constitution would ever assemble for that purpose — or, in short, whether there now remained any regular and legal means, by which the differences which had arisen between the Northern and Southern Provinces could be adjusted. He then proceeded to say that, under these circumstances, it was the wish of the King, hat the four Allied Powers and France should immediately, and with the least posible lose of time, appoint Plenipotentiaries to assemble in Congress, at such place as might be judged most convenient, the purpose of effecting a conciliatory mediation between the two great Divisions of the Country. He was avare, he said, that the Ministers of Russia and Prussia, who have already received. Full Powers to act


under the original invitation of The Netherland Go- 1830 vernment, as regarded the mere question of separation, were too far removed from their respective Courts to obtain in sufficient time, that extension of their powers which the present proposition required: and that though M. de Wessenberg, the new Austrian Minister, was hourly expected with Instructions from Vienna, those Instructions could, of course, only relate to the same original question: that he hoped, however, that these Ministers, seeing the urgency of the case, and the indispensable necessity of acting without a moment's delay, would consent to assist at the proposed Congress under the spirit of their general Instructions, until they should receive more specific powers for the purpose; and that he proposed to write this night to His Majesty's Ambassador in London, to direct him to submit the Proposal to the British Government, and to engage them to write immediately to Paris, to invite the Court of France to appoint a Plenipotentiary on their part.


His Netherland Majesty, he said, was of opinion that, although his Allies might be disinclined to afford him military assistance in his present difficulties, a diplomatic measure of the kind proposed, might still not only be of the greatest service to him, but might contribute essentially at this moment, to the preservation of the general peace. His Majestys idea was, that though it was of the utmost importance that the Plenipotentiairies should be appointed instantly, and that they should be able, if necessary, to assemble at the latter end of next week, the moment at which they should meet should be lest to His Majesty's dis-cretion; that though it was not probable, it was still possible, that the States - General and the Commissioners empowered to report upon the modifications of the Constitution might meet on Monday next, and proceed regularly to the dispatch of business, and that it would be, at all events, desirable, that until the issue of the Prince of Orange's mission to the revolted Provinces, which might perhaps dispense altogether with the necessity of its meeting, the Congress should not be convoked.

M. de Verstolk then proceeded to say, that the first few days of next week would probably decide

1830 upon this necessity, and that if the Plenipotentiaries should be appointed, and invited by the King to assemble, His Majesty was of opinion that their first measure should be to demand an Armistice upon the principle of uti possidetis, and that, if this was acceded to, the French Government taking part in the measure, there could be very little doubt that such an arrangement might be effected as should satisfy the just demands of each Division of the Kingdom, and prevent any disturbance of the general peace.

[ocr errors]

As regarded the idea of demanding an Armistice, he was willing, he said, that the opinion of the Alhed Powers should be taken upon that point from their respective Ministers now in London, but that, if adopted, the declaration of the demand should not issue from thence, but should be made by the Plenipotentiaries whenever they should be invited to assemble, for the reason already adverted to: viz - that of not taking, at this moment, any step which might have the effect of interfering in any way with the mission of the Prince of Orange. He then added that, should the Prince's mission succeed, the extended powers which he now requested for the Plenipotentiaries would be no longer necessary, but that, af all events, the powers necessary to sanction that degree of separation, which at present seemed inevitable, would be required.

The Russian and Prussian Ministers professed their readiness, under the general spirit of their Instructions, to assist at the proposed Congress, subject to such reserve as they might deem necessary, until they should receive precise Instructions upon the subject from their respective Courts, and provided always that His Majesty's Government and the Court of France consented to send Plenipotentiaries. With this declaration M. de Vorstolk appeared to rest satisfied, and he writes to-night upon the subject to M. de Falck, and to the Netherland Minister at Berlin. He forwards his Despatch to the latter by M. Heckeren, the Netherland Minister in Russia, who sets out this evening on his return to St. Petersburgh.

M. de Verstolk was desirous that the proposed Congress should be held at The Hague, but as it might, and probably would, be necessary that the Plenipotentiaries should, in the course of their procedings,

have to communicate with persons deputed from the 1830 Belgian Provinces, and who would fear, or affect to fear, coming into this part of the Country, he suggests either the Towns of Breda or of Cleves, inclines, I think, to the latter.



Réponse du Comte d'Aberdeen à la note lui adressée par le ministre plénipotentiaire des Pays-Bas, du 17 Octobre 1830.

London, Foreign office, 17th October 1830. I have had the honour of receiving your Excellency's Letter of the 5th instant, in which, after describing the origin and progress of the insurrection in the Low Countries, the measures adopted by the Government for the restoration of tranquillity, and the failure of these weasures, your Excellency requests, by order of your Court, that the British Government would send a body of Troops into the disturbed Districts without delay, for the purpose of assisting in the suppression of the revolt.

I have not failed to lay this Communication before the King my Master; and I am commanded by His Majesty to express the deep concern with which he has witnessed the deplorable excesses committed at Brussels, and in other parts of the Kingdom of the Netherlands; and to assure your Excellency of the interest which His Majesty feels in the happiness of the King, and in the prosperity of his Government. His Majesty does full justice to the prudent and constitutional course which has been pursued by the King of the Netherlands, and laments that endeavours, so well deserving of success, should have been fruitless.

The request which your Excellency has made for military succours is founded upon the urgency of preventing those effects which might naturally be apprehended, in consequence of the retreat of His Royal Highness Prince Frederick from Brussels; and is intended to guard against the extension of the revolt to other Cities of the Kingdom, and to the Fortresses

« PreviousContinue »