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som, through Lord Exmouth, of not less than a thousand Sicilians and Neapolitans, at the rate of a thousand dollars a head; voluntarily tendered by him for their release.
This readiness, on the part of the Barbary States, of admitting their prisoners to ransom, would lead to a belief that the accounts of their ill treatment have been greatly exaggerated by those who, like Captain Croker and Mr. Macgill
, have no other information than what they may pick up at a Consul's dinner. Some, it is true, are made to labour at the public works, others are hired by individuals, and others again (and this is the worst lot of all) are made subject to the brutal passions of the ruling powers; but that little value is attached to their labour may be inferred from Captain Croker's own statement, respecting the two Messieurs Tereni, who are permitted to live under the protection of the Consul, on condition that they pay a dollar per month for not working in the mines. The price of this indulgence, it must be confessed, is reasonable enough; but those 'mines,' we believe, have no existence; perhaps he means the quarries. It is, no doubt, an act of great inhu. manity to compel men, whom the fortune of war has thrown into the hands of their enemies, to hard labour; but what shall be said of that miscreant who, under the mask of friendship, kidnapped the Spaniards from the defence of their own country, and forced them to labour in the mud banks of the Scheldt, and the quarries of Cherbourg ! the humanity of thc philanthropists, who are now clamouring so loudly in our domestic as well as foreign journals, then slept as sweetly and as soundly as if nothing had occurred to disturb its repose. That the bread furnished to the unfortunate slaves, by the Algerines, is black and execrable may be granted : but it is not worse than the black and execrable' bread eaten by the Russian soldier; and as to their confinement, of which Captain Croker complains, had we not at one time 70,000 Frenchmen confined in hulks or in prisons ? in one single building not less than 8000 persons,-a number three times greater than the whole of the Christian slaves in all the Barbary states together. But Captain Croker seems not to be aware there was a reason for shutting them up when he made his appearance. By the 11th article of the treaty with Algiers, it is stipulated that on the arrival of any of His Majesty's ships, public proclamation shall be made, in order that all the Christian slaves may be secured: after which should any of them escape on board such ships, they can neither be demanded, nor any ransom be required for them.
If, however, the treatment of Christian prisoners, or slaves, were more harsh than it is, what has England to do with it, that, she must stand foremost as the avenging power, and sacrifice her seamen to evince her humanity towards Sardinians, Sicilians, and
Neapolitans? But—the question is widely altered, if, as it would seem, the treaties recently made in behalf of these people have been violated; if the Dey of Algiers has not only refused to follow the example of the other two States, in renouncing the practice of making Christian slaves, but in the very moment that he was signing the most solemn treaties, 'in the name of God Almighty,' treacherously sent off his orders for the massacre of Bona, then indeed England has been insulted, and we can understand the nature of the armament said to be preparing for the Mediterranean. The question then is no longer whether England shall waste her blood and treasure in an idle crusade, for the benefit of foreigners ; she is imperatively called upon to avenge the insult offered to herown flag; and alone we trust she will avenge it. The flag which has maintained its superiority in the Mediterranean against the fleets of France and Spain requires no assistance to humble the Barbary powers. At the same time, we do not believe that Algiers is in so defenceless, or the people in so ignorant a state, that the one might be destroyed and the other humbled by two sail of the line, as Lord Cochrane is said to have asserted in the House of Com
The old King of Prussia said that he sometimes ventured to launch un mensonge politique, though sure to be detected within four and twenty hours, because it worked its effects in the mean time. On this occasion it required not a moment to contradict the unfounded assertion--yet it remained uncontradicted! •Whosoever knows Algiers,' says Sir Wm. Monson, cannot be ignorant of the strength of it.' The truth is, if well defended, it is almost impregnable; and the man who affects to speak lightly of bringing a squadron in line abreast of a connected series of works mounting more than 300 pieces of heavy cannon, and within a few hundred yards of them, is wofully ignorant, or wilfully wishes to deceive. But to represent an enterprise as easy, is a sure way to increase public indignation against the officeremployed to conduct it, in case of failure ;-in the present instance, however, even a failure would escape censure.—But we are generally too apt to hold cheap an untried enemy. Our ministers of 1806 thought the Dardanelles de. fenceless, and the people ignorant, till they heard of its disastrous issue; but the admiral's report of the granite shot, weighing 800 pounds, which cut the main-mast of the Windsor Castle in two,* must have confounded the precious projectors of that illfated expedition, had they not been driven from the helm before it reached this country.
* It was said that the gallant admiral who commanded on this memorable expedition brought home two of these trophies, to place as capitals on the pillars of his lodge gate; to one of which he gave the name of Sestos and to the other that of Abydos.
The Algerines too have mortars and stone shot of a similar kind, and Turks and renegadoes to manage them; some of them men of rank and talent, (members, probably, of the Legion of Honour,) who, having disgraced the one and misapplied the other, have been forced to fly to the shores of Africa from the offended laws of their own country. With all this, we are not apprehensive about the result of an English squadron before Algiers, though the history of the attempts made against it is not very encouraging. Charles V. having taken the Goleta before Tunis, and released 20,000 slaves, next tried his hand on Algiers, and after the loss of as many of his men, as he had released slaves at Tunis, was glad to make peace on any terms. Of the formidable army employed on this expedition, Many,' says his elegant historian, perished in the battle, more in the retreat, and the remainder returned into Spain covered with infamy.'
covered with infamy. He might have added to his list of disasters, that 15 ships of war, 140 transports, and 8000 men were destroyed by the elements. Philip II. was equally unfortunate in his attempts on Algiers.
The most that could be hoped for is the destruction of the town and the fleet: but Algiers is not so easily destroyed; the flat roofed houses are all built of stone, almost without a stick of wood, and without furniture; and every house is as good a fortress as those of Rosetta and Buenos Ayres-names too disastrous to be soon forgotten. But were it possible to lay it in ashes, even that would not make much impression on its rulers; and the suffering but resigned Mussulman would resolve it all into the will of God!" When the French bombarded Mogadore, and afterwards sent to make peace, the first question asked by the emperor of the ambassador was, how much money the expedition had cost them ?and on being informed, he observed to the ambassador, that for half that sum he would have levelled the town to its foundations !
Šo says Keatinge—but the story was first told of the Dey of Algiers, when Louis XIV. threatened to lay that place in ashes. Tell him, says the Dey, to send me half the money
it would cost, and I will do it for him more effectually. When the cabinet of James I. determined to show our naval prowess, by an attack on Algiers, that able and intelligent statesman, Sir William Monson, vehemently opposed it, as a rash and ill-founded expedition ; urging that, instead of raising the reputation of the British arms, it would only contribute to render them ridiculous. Sir Robert Mansel, however, was sent with a squadron, and did nothing; after him, a fleet went for the same purpose, under Lord Willoughby, and another under the Earl of Denbigh, both of which were equally unsuccessful.
The success of Blake(who never failed) in burning the Tunisian
fleet at the Goleta, was as detrimental to our Mediterranean commerce, as the failure of Mansel. The irritation produced by the attack increased the number of row-boats, more destructive and more certain of their prey than large rigged vessels. In fact, the Mediterranean swarmed with them, and they were not over scrupulous in their disposal of the prisoners. In 1683, when the French admiral Du Quesne bombarded Algiers, all the French prisoners in the place were butchered, and the Dey committed the inhuman and atrocious act' of binding the French consul to the mouth of a mortar, and firing him off against the bombarding squadron. The balance of the account therefore has not been in favour of humanity, after any of the attacks on Algiers, whether successful or otherwise.
3. Let us however suppose a "holy alliance was formed, and that by its efforts all the towns on the sea-coast were tumbled down on the heads of their unoffending inhabitants; what is the next step to be taken by these combined friends of humanity and religion? Are the Christian nations to plant colonies along the coast, or is it meant to replace the Turk in full and quiet possession of them? If the first plan should be adopted, each colony must depend for its subsistence on the interior immediately behind it, which is filled with a population, every part of which, excepting the Jews, bears a deadly hatred towards Christians. To replace the Turk seems to be the plan of the President of the Society of Knights Liberators of the Christian Slaves in Africa ;' a strange termination, it must be owned, of a crusade for liberty and the Christian religion! We think, however, that with all our philanthropy and quixotism, the sober good sense of those who have delivered England from the most perilous situation in which she was ever placed, will såve her from this last humiliating step, which could only terminate in laying the naval power of Great Britain in the Mediterranean at the feet of the Grand Signior, as a present or a sacrifice to be offered up to France at some future war.
Another project, worthy of those enlightened reformers who plan constitutions for all the governments of Europe through the medium of the Rhenish Mercury and the Frankfort Gazette, is to dethrone the Barbary sovereigns, erect their territories into a Christian kingdom, and place the Prince Royal of Etruria on the throne, to be guaranteed to him by the great powers of Europe. This indeed is a precious scheme, a fertile source of human misery, of endless bloodshed !
Difficulties every way occur ; nor do we pretend to suggest the means of removing them; but we cannot avoid thinking that the concessions already obtained by Lord Exmouth from two of the powers will ultimately lead to a better order of things. If, as it would appear, the Turkish rabble are so dissatisfied with the declaratory abolition of piracy by the Bey of Tunis that they are abondoning the country, and carrying off the shipping; if the two sovereigns of Tripoli and Tunis, who are natives, will employ their own people in offices of trust, and raise their armies out of the Moorish population; if the Grand Signior should be required to absolve them from their mere nominal allegiance, and never more interfere with their concerns; in short, if they could be constituted independent governments, under native princes, there is every reason to believe they would gradually subside into more industrious, commercial, and peaceable communities : and the first step towards this desirable end would be that of prevailing on them to dismiss every Turk and renegado from their employ. The two states above mentioned would be too happy to accede to this; and if the Dey of Algiers should hold out, let him be treated, as he deserves to be, without mercy. Under such an arrangement we verily believe we should hear no more of their piracies than we have done of late years of the Sallee rovers, once so formidable to all the commercial nations of Europe.
We now dismiss the political part of the question, and gladly take our leave of Sir Sidney Smith's - Mémoire,' and Captain Croker's •Letter.?— The remaining books, whose titles we have placed at the head of this article, derive an interest chiefly from the circumstances of the times: of the countries of which they profess to treat they contain not much information ; but they describe the manners and habits of the present race of people, oppressed as they are, but not humbled, by the worst of all possible governments, and a despotism which reaches from Egypt to the Atlantic, and from the shores of the Mediterranean to the great desert of Sahara.
The most curious and by far the most interesting of them is the Narrative of a Ten Years' Residence at Tripoli. It consists of letters written during that period by a sister-in-law of Mr. Tully, the British consul,between whose family and that of the bashaw thereappears
to have been the closest intimacy. As a proof of that intimacy, it is mentioned in the preface that, when the consul was under the necessity of repairing to England for a short time, the bashaw, and Lilla (or lady) Halluma, his principal queen, entreated him to leave his two daughters under their protection until his return, assuring him that nothing should be wanting to render them happy; that they should consider them as bint-el-bled-daughters of the land and guard them as their own children; and that neither their religion nor manners should be in the smallest degree interfered with, during the absence of their parents. The writer of the letters and her two nieces, being constant visiters to the female part of the bashaw's fa. mily, and in habits of friendly intercourse with them, leaves no room