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The left of his operations was entrusted to General Prideaux with a body of colonial militia, and Sir William Johnson with another of friendly Indians, over whom he had a wonderful ascendency. This united force was to march against the fort of Niagara, reduce it, and then, crossing Lake Ontario, advance on Montreal. The centre of his operations was entrusted to General Amherst, who superseded Abercrombie. With twelve thousand men he was again to attempt Ticonderoga, open the navigation of Lake Champlain, and then, joining Prideaux and Johnson at Montreal, descend the St. Lawrence to support Wolfe, who was to be conveyed by sea to the St. Lawrence, and to prepare for the storming of Quebec, it being hoped that, by the time of his arrival, the two other divisions of the army would have come up.

The number of places in which the inquiries under the commission were carried on was 237, having a population of 2,028,513. In twenty-five places the number of corporators was not ascertained; in the others (212) they amounted to 88,509. The governing body was self-elected in 186 boroughs. This body elected the mayor in 131 boroughs, appointed the recorder in 136, and the town-clerk in 135. The number of corporators exercising magisterial functions was 1,086, in 188 boroughs. In 112 boroughs the corporations had exclusive criminal jurisdiction, extending to the trial of various descriptions of offences, and in forty-two their jurisdiction was not exclusive. Seventeen boroughs did not enjoy any income whatever; in eight the precise amount could not be obtained. The total income of 212 boroughs amounted to 366,948; their expenditure to 377,027. 103 were involved in debts amounting to 1,855,371, and were besides burdened with annuities amounting to 4,463. In twenty-eight boroughs only were the accounts published; in fifteen the annual income was under 20; in eleven it was between 2,000 and 3,000; in five, 3,000, and under 4,000; in one, 4,000, and under 5,000; in four, 5,000, and under 7,500; in five, 10,000, and under 12,500; in one, 12,500, and under 15,000; in one, 15,000, and under 20,000; and in one, 91,000.

THE BATTLE OF WATERLOO. (See p. 99.) The Austrians being again expelled from Italy, Buonaparte, in his all-absorbing cupidity, determined to turn adrift the Pope, and add his little vineyard to his now cumbrously overgrown Ahab's domains. He had begun this spoliation in 1808, seizing on the greater part of the Pontiff's territories; sending away his cardinals, and reducing him to little better than a solitary prisoner in his own palace. This was an ungrateful return to the poor old Pope for making the long journey into France to crown him, and thus to give a sacred sanction to his usurpation of the imperial crowna sanction of immense effect throughout the Catholic world. Pius VII. had given Buonaparte great offence by refusing to declare war on Great Britain, and thus keeping up a breach in his system of exclusion of British commerce. He had, therefore, already taken military possession of Civita Vecchia and Ancona, but he now resolved to take the whole temporal dominion from the Pope, and abrogate, by virtue of his assumed heirship of Charlemagne's realm, the gift of Charlemagne to the Church. On the 2nd of February, 1809, General Miollis, by order of Buonaparte, took possession of Rome, disarmed and disbanded the Pope's guard, and marched his other soldiers to the north, telling them they should no longer remain under the effeminate rule of a priest. Miollis then gave the Pontiff the alternative to join the French league, offensive and defensive, or to be deposed. The Pope firmly refused to concede his rights to anything but absolute force. On the 17th of May, therefore, Napoleon's decree for the deposition of the Pope from his temporal power was proclaimed. It assumed the heirship of Charlemagne to be in Buonaparte; declared the union of the spiritual and temporal powers to be the source of all scandals and discords in the Catholic Church; that they were, therefore, at an endthe Roman State for ever united to the French Empire. On the 10th of June Pius issued a bull excommunicating Buonaparte and all who aided him in his sacrilegious usurpation of the patrimony of St. Peter; and this was followed, on the 6th of July, by General Radet forcing the gates of the Vatican, taking possession of it with his troops, entering the presence of the Pope, who was amid his priests, and clad in his pontificals, and demanding that he should instantly sign a renunciation of all the temporal estates attached to the see of Rome. Pius declared that he neither could nor would perform any such sacrilegious act. He was then informed that he must quit Rome. Pius was detained at Savona three years, and was then removed to Fontainebleau.

The Empress Maria Theresa, never reconciling herself to the seizure of Silesia by Frederick, and not finding England disposed to renew a war for the object of recovering it, applied to her old enemy, France. It required some ability to accomplish this object of detaching France from its ancient policy of hostility to Austria, pursued ever since the days of Henry IV., and in severing the alliance with Prussia; but her Minister, Kaunitz, who had been her ambassador in Paris, contrived to effect it. The temptation was thrown out of the surrender of Belgic provinces to augment France, in return for assistance in recovering German possessions from Prussia. To add fresh stimulus to this change, the vengeance of offended woman was brought into play. Madame Pompadour, Louis XV.'s all-powerful mistress, had sent[124] flattering compliments to Frederick by Voltaire; but the Prussian king only repaid them with sneers. On the other hand, the virtuous Maria Theresa did not blush to write, with her own hand, the most flattering epistles to the Pompadour. By these means, the thirst of revenge raised in the heart of the French mistress worked successfully the breach with Prussia and the alliance with Austria. The same stimulus was tried, and with equal effect, on the Czarina Elizabeth, on whose amorous licence the cynical Prussian monarch had been equally jocose. Kaunitz knew how to make the sting of these ungallant sallies felt at both Paris and St. Petersburg, and the winter of 1755-6 saw the Russian alliance with Prussia and England renounced, the English subsidy, with far more than German probity, renounced too, and Russia pledged to support Austria and France. The Elector of Saxony, Augustus, King of Poland, who amused himself with low pot-house companions and tame bears, and left his affairs to his minister, Count Brühl, was also induced, by the promise of Prussian territory, to join the league; and even Sweden, whose queen, Ulrica, was sister to Frederick, was drawn over to take side against him, in the hope of recovering its ancient province of Pomerania. This confederation of ninety millions of people, leagued against five millions, was pronounced by Pitt "one of the most powerful and malignant ones that ever yet threatened the independence of mankind." "My lords and gentlemen," said his Majesty, "I have come to meet you for the purpose of proroguing this Parliament, with a view to its instant dissolution." The voice of the king rose, and became still more shrill and piercing, as he reached the last clause of the sentence; and a loud buzz and hum, the loudest such a presence permitted, immediately followed, and nearly drowned all the succeeding sentences. The dissolution speedily followed the prorogation, and a new Parliament was summoned to meet on the 14th of June.

About four months passed happily away, when another event occurred which was very near furnishing a startling illustration of the truth that there is no certain tenure of human happiness. On the night of Wednesday, the 10th of June, London was agitated by a report of an attempt upon the life of the Queen. Next day an investigation took place at the Home Office, from which the public and the reporters of the daily press were excluded. The following are the facts:At a quarter past six on Wednesday evening, the Queen, accompanied by Prince Albert, left Buckingham Palace, in a very low, open phaeton, to take her customary drive in Hyde Park before dinner. The carriage had proceeded a short distance up the road when a young man, who had been standing with his back to the Green Park fence, advanced to within a few yards of the carriage, and deliberately fired at the Queen. The postilions paused for an instant. The Prince ordered them, in a loud voice, to drive on. "I have got another!" exclaimed the assassin, who discharged a second pistol, aimed at the carriage, which also proved harmless. The Queen and the Prince went as far as Hyde Park Corner, and then turned to the Duchess of Kent's mansion, in Belgrave Square. Meanwhile, the assassin remained near the spot, leaning against the park fence, with the weapons in his hand. Several persons laid hold of him, and he was conveyed by two policemen to the Gardener's Lane station-house. After staying a short time with the Duchess of Kent, in Belgrave Square, the Queen and her husband proceeded to Hyde Park, where an immense concourse of persons, of all ranks and both sexes, had congregated. The reception of the royal pair was so enthusiastic as almost to overpower the self-possession of the Queen. They soon returned to Buckingham Palace, attended by a vast number of the nobility and gentry, in carriages and on horseback. A multitude of persons collected at the entrance to the palace, and vehemently cheered the Queen, who, though pale and agitated, repeatedly bowed and smiled in return.