Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

private Bills. The public Bills were, the Mutiny Bill, the the Queen of Portugal, was governed by au-
Marine Mutiny Bill, and the Pensions' Duties Bill. The thorities civil and military in allegiance to her
Commissioners were the Archbishop of CANTERBURY, the
Lord CHANCELLOR, and the Earl of SHAFTESBURY.

majesty. Petitions presented:-By the Marquis of Hertford from «That on the said 12th of December, instrucAlcester, praying for the repcal of the Malt and Beer tions were given by the Lords Commissioners Duties:-By Lord WALLACE, from certain owners of Lead- of the Admiralty, stating that a considerable Mines in Cumberland, praying for a protection against number of Portuguese soldiers and other fothe introduction of Foreign Lead:-- By Earl STANHOPE, from a Hundred in Suffolk, complaining of Distress, pray.

reigners were about to sail in transports from ing that an inquiry might be instituted into its cause; pray

Plymouth to Falmouth, and it is supposed they ing also for a reduction of Taxation, and for a repeal of the intend making an attack on Terceira or other measures respecting the prevention of a Small Paper Cur- of the Western Isles, and his Majesty having rency:--By the Marquis of Lansdown, from the inhabitants of Rochdale, praying for a revision of the Criminal

been pleased to command that a Naval force Law, with the view of taking away the Punishment of Death

should be immediately despatched to interrupt from all offences against property: And by Lord CAR

any such attempt, you are hereby required and RINGTON, from High-Wycombe, with a similar prayer. directed to take the ship and sloop named in the

margin under your command, and to proceed AFFAIR AT TERCEIRA.) The Marquis with all practicable expedition to Terceira, and of Clanricarde said, that in rising to intro- having ascertained that you have succeeded in duce the Motion on which he had given alluded to, you will remain yourself at Angra or

reaching that Island before the transports above notice, he felt how inadequate his powers Praia, or cruising close to the Island in the were, to bring it forward in that manner most advisable position for interrupting any which its importance deserved; perceiving, vessels arriving off it; and you will detach the however, the vast consequences of the other ships as you shall deem best for preventprinciple involved in the course of policy ing the aforesaid force from reaching any of the to which he objected, and fearful, if passed other Islands. over in silence, that what had been done at

“That on the arrival of the Naval force sent Terceira should be drawn into a precedent, the commanding officer found that Island in the

to Terceira, in pursnance of the instructions, he thought he should be guilty of a derelic- possession of, and governed by, the authorities tion of his duty if he did not bring it under above mentioned. their Lordships' consideration. The papers “That in the beginning of January, 1829, a which had been laid before the House by number of Portuguese subjects or soldiers of the noble Secretary opposite, did not con

her said Majesty, voluntarily left this country tain, in his opinion, information as

with a view of repairing to the said Island, and ple as the House had a right to expect on

that their departure and destination were

known to her Majesty's Government, that they this important subject. There was one

appear to have embarked and sailed in unarmed document in particular, the absence of merchant ships, to have been unaccompawhich he regretted,—he meant the pro- nied by any naval force, and themselves withtest of Count Saldanha, against the attack Out any arms or ammunition of war. made on the vessels sailing to Terceira,

“That these unarmed merchant ships and by Captain Walpole, because he knew passengers were prevented by his Majesty's that the principle for which he contended ing the harbour of Porto Praia ; and that after

naval forces, sent for the purpose, from enterwas there very fully and very ably laid they had been fired into, and blood had been down. There was, however, in the docu- spilled, they were compelled, under the threat ments before the House sufficient informa- of the further use of force, again to proceed to tion on the affair to warrant him in bring- sea, and warned to quit the neighbourhood of ing it under the consideration of their Terceira, and the rest of the Azores, but that Lordships. Before he proceeded further, they might proceed wherever else they might

think proper.' he would read the Resolutions which he in

“That the use of force in intercepting these tended to submit for the adoption of their unarmed vessels, and preventing ihem from Lordships. The noble Lord then read the anchoring and landing their passengers in the following Resolutions,

harbour of Porto Praia, was a violation of the “That prior to the 12th of December, 1828, sovereignty of that state 10 which the Island her Majesty the Queen, Donna Maria 2nd, had

of Terceira belonged; and that the further inbeen recognized by his Majesty, and the other terference to compel these merchant ships or great Powers of Europe, to be the legitimate transports to quit the neighbourhood of the Queen of Portugal; and that at the period Azores,' was an assumption of jurisdiction upon above-named the said Queen was residing in the high seas, neither justified by the neces. this country, and had been received by his sity of the case, nor sanctioned by the general

law of nations." Majesty with the accustomed honours of her royal rank.

Their Lordships would see that he did not “That on the said 12th of December, the enter into the policy of the course pursued Island of Terceira, part of the dominions of by his Majesty's Government towards Don VOL. XXIII.

2 B

am

Miguel. Whatever that policy was, it | Ministers for not having guaranteed those would make no alteration in the arguments Portuguese a safe passage to the Azores ; which he should submit to them. The but while the negotiations on that point avowed policy of Ministers was that of were pending, it was known that Don Mistrict neutrality with respect to the con- guel's expedition to Terceira had failed. tending parties in Portugal. Be that The waters of the Azores were then free, policy good or bad, when the neutrality and all that the Portuguese here desired was once declared it ought to have been was, an opportunity of departing thither, as acted upon; but he would contend, that the noble Duke had at first advised and in the conduct pursued towards the un- admitted their right to do. An applicaarmed Portuguese endeavouring to land at tion to this effect was made by the Marquis Terceira, there was a violent breach of that Palmella to Ministers, he at the same time neutrality which was avowed, and also an assuring them that these men would go infraction of the law of nations, greatly off unarmed, in small detachments. They aggravated by the previous declaration of hired unarmed vessels, they had neither neutrality. He now begged to call the at- arms nor ammunition, and the number of tention of their Lordships to the circum- men was not greater than the number of stances under which the Portuguese, who men who usually go in one emigrant vessel had acknowledged the title of Donna to Canada, or about 600. Now, he wished Maria, had been driven from their country, to know how could these men be more and had sought refuge in this. Their fully divested of a hostile character, being Lordships would recollect that, after the without arms and ammunition? They defeat at Oporto, a considerable number of sailed, but an order was given to the comPortuguese subjects sought and obtained mander of our ships to prevent their landan asylum in this country. In doing-so they ing at Terceira. One of the vessels was subjected themselves to no restrictions, but fired into, and murder actually committed, remained as free as before they came here, for it was murder, at least manslaughter, to listen to the voice of duty, when it which no law could justify. These men called them to take arms in behalf of their formed a part of no invading army; they lawful sovereign. After they had obtained were merely subjects going home to their fel. a temporary asylum here, intelligence ar. low-subjects, alike loyal to their sovereign. rived that Terceira adhered faithfully He knew it was said by the noble Foreign to Donna Maria. They wished to pro. Secretary on 18th of February last, that ceed thither, and having understood that this expedition bore a hostile character ; Don Miguel was preparing an expedition beiny composed chiefly of Germans and against Terceira, they sought a convoy to Danes, who were engaged for the purpose escort them to that part of the Portuguese of hostility. He must, however, put his dominions in which the anthority of their private information on the matter in oppoQueen was recognized. That application sition to the noble Secretary's statement. was refused. He did not blame that re- There was, he believed, one vessel going to fusal; but he should wish that their Lord-Brazil which had some Germans and Danes ships would attend to the reply given by on board, and that vessel might have inthe noble Duke to the Marquis of Barba- tended to touch at Terceira; but it had cena, which was to the effect, that if the nothing to do with the four other vessels Portuguese wished to make war at the which sailed from Plymouth for Terceira, Azores, they must depart from this coun- and which had no Danes or Germans on try and go there as private individuals. oard as passengers. But the vessel with This was what they wished; but from this the Germans and Danes, moreover, did not they were prevented by Ministers. They sail at the same time with the expedition were afterwards dispersed from Plymouth,["Hear hear," from the Duke of Welwhere they had been collected together. ion.] He understood the meaning of the This was, he thought, an unwarrantable noble Duke's cheer; but was the noble exercise of power. He contended, that the Duke so used to arms that he could not subjects of a sovereign whose title was imagine an expedition to be any thing save sanctioned, recognized, and all but guar- a hostile armament? Without dwelling, anteed, by this country, had a right to however, on that point, he must contend come here, and had a right to depart hence, that there was no law to justify our interto any part of their sovereign's dominions ference: there was no writer on the law of without any molestation. He did not blame nations in whose works there was any passage to justify such conduct. He would if such were their object? The noble Duke not prove this assertion by lengthened ex- had himself, in his first letter to the Martracts; but would merely quote one short quis de Barbacena, given them bis permisone from Vattel, in order to show that in sion, and said they might go ont as indithe observance of strict neutrality we could viduals if they so pleased. But to revert not interfere with the subjects of other to what had been said by the noble Foreign countries in the way which had been done Secretary as to the Danish and German on this occasion. The passage from Vat- troops. He had very

different information tel, which he would quote, was from the on the subject from an officer in the service 7th Chapter Book iii., and was as follows: of Donna Maria, who was on board, and

“It is not possible, then, without injustice, who declared that the passengers were all to enter its territory'in arms to pursue and Portuguese, with the exception of four capture a guilty person. Such an act affects Spanish officers, who had been in the serthe safety of a state, and is injurious to the vice of Portugal, and who were then going rights of sovereignty or supreme authority, out to join the troops. He would now come which belong to monarchs. This is what is to the question whether a fraud had been termed a violation of territory, and nothing is more generally recognized among nations than committed by the Brazilian minister in the this, as an injury that should be repelled with application made to this Government to be vigour by any state that will not submit to allowed to export arms. The allegation oppression."

was, that an application was made in the It might perhaps be said, that the sea first instance, to send a certain quantity of about the Azores was not the territory of arms to Terceira. That was refused; and the Queen of Portugal, even if her author. then application was made, and permission ity were recognized there; but on this granted, to send them to the Brazils; but subject he would quote from Bynkershoek they were shipped off to Terceira. Now, the following passages:

if the Brazilian minister had acted in this "Nulla siquidem sit ratio, cur mare, quod in way, it would be a good ground of impu

But what alicujus imperio est et potestate minus ejusilem tation of want of good faith. esse dicamus, quam possim in ejus'territorio." had this to do with the question of the

Non oportet in mari, alterius principis con- interference with the Portuguese troops ? tinenti proximo, leges dare, sed accipere, quum ibi Let their Lordships however look at the sumus subditi, non secus ac in ejusdem territorio."

state of the law at the time this application According to that authority, the waters was made. Was there any law which preabout Terceira were as much under the vented the exportation of arms direct to dominion of the young Queen of Portugal | Terceira? He was aware of none; nor as the island itself. But had it been other was he aware of any Order of Council prowise, had Terceira been in the possession hibiting such exportation of arms. More of Don Miguel, he would then beg to know than this, it had been stated in another what ground there was for supposing that place, that at the very time the noble Earl four unarmed vessels, conveying a number was attaching this condition to a permisof men, who he believed had not even side sion for exporting arms, the Portuguese arms, and certainly had none of the muni. Govern:neni was actually purchasing arms tions of war, intended an attack upon the in this country, and exporting them for its island of Terceira ?-an island which had, own use. Why should this, then, have on several occasions, resisted formidable been allowed to the one party, and refused forces brought against it by the Spaniards. to the other? Again, suppose that arms It was not for the first time that Terceira ought not to have been exported straight to was distinguished for its loyalty and valour. Terceira, what right had the Ministers to It was attacked by the Spaniards in the prevent the exportation of arms to the years 1581, 1582, and 1583 without suc- Brazils? And, if they had no right to precess. He mentioned these circumstances vent this, what necessity was there for the in order to shew that it was absurd, as he permission? However, be this as it might, had stated, to imagine that that island still the unfortunate Portuguese had nocould be taken by an unarmed force. But thing to do with the pretended fraud, and it had been said that a civil war was going ought not to have been punished for it. on at the time in the Azores, and that There were other points of law,--such as those men went out to assist in it. In an- the false clearances, and so forth, which swer to the assertion he would ask, Why were minor points of municipal law, and not? Why should those men be prevented / which he would not argue. There was a legal remedy for the violation of such laws, | tugal, and to take care that the influence but it was not a legal remedy to follow of this country at the Court of Lisbon people on the high seas and fire into their should be superior to, and preponderate vessels. He contended that in this trans- over, that of France. At this time in

paraction the Government had committed an ticular this duty ought not to be lost sight infraction of the law of nations, and he of, for it was reported that France had trusted therefore that their Lordships would undertaken the task, in which we had concur in the opinions which he had em- failed, of reconciling the differences that bodied in his resolutions. The Govern- existed in the House of Braganza. Were ment had not done this in a hasty mo- we to be second only in such an affair? ment, or, if it had, Ministers had at least Were we to endeavour to attain the obthought proper to defend and to attempt ject we ought to have most at heart, to justify their conduct. Nothing, however, through the mediation of a Bourbon ? By could be more futile than their attempt. such a course we were enabling France to They had resorted to a despicable sort of regain her influence in Portugal, while our special pleading to justify their conduct, own, which was already shaken, would be which was far more worthy of a petti- entirely lost. He trusted that their Lordfogging lawyer, than of the Ministers of a ships at least would not become a party to great nation. They seemed to act on the such policy, but that they would show to Euprinciple of Achilles.

rope, that they were not so lost to all sense Jura neget sibi nata, nihil non arroget armis. of justice as to sanction a flagrant and un

He trusted, however, that their Lord-called-for violation of the law of nations, ships would mark the sense they enter and that they were not so inattentive to tained of such conduct by voting in favour the interest of the nation as to abandon of his resolutions. They must remember the advantages which this country must that by not censuring such conduct, they always derive from a strict alliance with made it their own. The opportunity was Portugal. He had only now to invite their offered to them of retrieving the glory of Lordships to a concurrence in the Resoluthe country, sacrificed by the Ministers, tions he had proposed. and they would become parties to the guilt The Resolutions having been put by the if they did not reprobate and condemn the Lord Chancellor, proceedings of Ministers. In the last The Earl of Aberdeen said, that Session of Parliament, their Lordships had although their Lordships had been three been told that negotiations were on foot or four times already called upon to disby which it was hoped the Government cuss this question, yet he felt perfectly would be able to reconcile the differences well satisfied that the noble Lord had existing between the members of the House thought proper to bring it once more unof Braganza. The next thing they heard der their consideration ; for he was well upon the subject was this gross case of the convinced that the more the subject was affair at 'Terceira,—this assault upon one examined and understood, the greater of the very parties whose differences they would be the certainty of their Lordships had been told the Government was endea- giving their sanction to the course which vouring to reconcile. In the present Ses- his Majesty's Ministers bad adopted. sion they had been told that all hopes of The noble Lord had proposed a series of effecting such a reconciliation were at an resolutions which, as he had heard them end. But to this infraction of the law of that night for the first time, it could not nations their Lordships were now made a be supposed that he was prepared to disparty, and it became the dignity of that cuss minutely. Some truth there doubtHouse to rouse themselves and to disclaim less was in the narrative contained in the all participation in the act. Nay, unless noble Lord's resolutions; but it was dashtheir Lordships strongly reprobated such a ed with circumstances well calculated to transaction, it would become a precedent give any one who read it a very erroneous which might in future times be turned notion of the transaction. The subject against ourselves, and materially affect the was indeed highly important; but their interests of the country. One of the prin- Lordships should view it candidly and disciples acted on most perseveringly and passionately: it was even a subject, he most consistently through many ages by would say, on which their Lordships every successive British ministry, was to should rather distrust first impressions ; cultivate a good understanding with Por- and moreover, the character of the transaction depended altogether on its being / or he should rather say, after the fight viewed as a whole, from its commence- from Oporto, for where there had been no ment to its conclusion. The importance engagement there could be no defeat,-of thus viewing this transaction, - of after the fight from Oporto, the fugitives viewing it as a whole,-imposed upon him betook themselves to Spain. At this the necessity of troubling their Lordships point it was, that the good offices of this with a narrative of the facts that were country in their favour were first interconnected with it. But first of all let posed. The Spanish government orhim allude to the position in which this dered them to quit Spain within a month; country stood with respect to Por- but by the interference of the British Gotugal, at the time this transaction took vernment the period of their stay in Spain place. That position was one of strict was prolonged, and facilities were given neutrality. Whether the choice of that towards their embarkation. Application position was right or wrong had no- was then made to this country for transthing to do with the present question. ports to convey these troops hither. This It might have been right,-it might have our Government could not consent to; been wrong, but he had not heard it ob- but it promised, that if the troops came jected to in that House; and the noble here, they should be hospitably received, Lord who proposed these resolutions had and that accommodation should be providsaid, that he would not enter into the ed for them for a time. The troops arrived discussion of that point. It might have here about the end of August; and here been right to have supported the legiti- followed, he must say, the first and the mate sovereign of Portugal; but that only error of which the Ministers had course had not been contended for in been guilty The Government ought, that House. He knew, indeed, that it perhaps, to have insisted upon the immehad been stated out of the House ; and diate dispersion of these troops. But he must say, he thought it would have when their Lordships considered the debeen only fair to have raised the point in plorable condition in which the men were, the House, where it might have been met and the promise which was made that in argument, and the opinions of their they should shortly be carried to Brazil, Lordships taken upon it; it had been he was sure their Lordships would consistated out of the House, that the Govern- der that it was no very extravagant stretch ment ought to have supported the claims of humanity in the Government to act as of the legitimate government of Portugal. it did. The troops, on arriving here, deAgain, on the other hand, it might have clined the accommodation which was offerbeen right to accede to the almost unani- ed them at Plymouth and at Portsmouth,

ous opinion of Portugal, and acknow and they preferred remaining together at ledge the prince whom the Portuguese Plymouth, where they formed what they had chosen as their king. Neither of called a dépôt,—where they were discithese courses, however, had been adopted; plined, officered, and, in fact, exhibited the course adopted was that of strict neu- every appearance that belonged to trality, and all he claimed from their military force. Indeed, it was not denied Lordships, on the present occasion, was that they were a military force, and noto agree with him that, such a course thing else. In the month of October the having been adopted, it was necessary Marquis of Barbacena informed the noble that it should be faithfully observed. Duke (Wellington) near him, in a letter, For of all the systems that might have that he intended to despatch a portion of been adopted, that which alone was per these troops (for so the Marquis termed fectly indefensible was, to lay down a them) to the Azores. In order to form a course of neutrality in the first instance, correct judgment of the subsequent transand afterwards to interpret that course actions, the condition of the Azores at according to our opinions, our feelings, or that time must not be lost sight of. our interests. Having declared then that Every one of the islands was under Don the course resolved upon by the Govern- Miguel, excepting only the island of Terment was one of strict neutrality, and that ceira, and the condition of that island, it was necessary to maintain that course but of that island alone, was doubtful. faithfully, he would proceed shortly to It was doubtful in this way the popuTecapitulate the circumstances of this trans- lation was in favour of Don Miguel, but action, After the defeat at Oporto, - the garrison of the fortress, disarming the

a

« AnteriorContinuar »