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cult for Sweden to execute this treaty, and seemed at one moment to threaten a rupture with Denmark. The emperor Alexander, who had some right to be regarded as impartial, having plundered both kingdoms in succession, exhibited a disposition to favour the claim of Denmark ; and treated the king of Sweden with marked incivility, returning, even without opening it, a letter written to him by the king with his own hand. About the same time, prince Gustavus, the son of the dethroned monarch, was sent for to Petersburg, and thence despatched to England for his education, under the protection of his imperial uncle ; and in another quarter a marriage was contracted between the heirs of the crown of Baden, relations of the emperor, and the sisters of young Gustavus. All this wore rather an ominous aspect, and, taken in connexion with the prevailing fanaticism in favour of legitimacy, gave room for apprehension respecting the stability of the Bernadotte dynasty. By the intervention of England the affair was adjusted; but the internal feuds between Sweden and Norway still continue upon this and other subjects.
It has been the fortune of Sweden, one of the least considerable states in Europe, to take a leading part in the adjustment of the balance of power at the two most critical and important epochs in modern history. At the period of the thirty years' war, the interference of the Swedish arms under the direction of the great Gustavus Adolphus, and the school of illustrious military chiefs, which he had formed, decided the politics of Europe ; and Sweden was in a manner the dominant power at the conclusion of the peace of Westphalia. At the late crisis her influence was far from being equally conspicuous ; but if any one separate event, more than another, gave the turn to this momentous struggle, while it was yet doubtful, it was perhaps the diversion made in the rear of the French armies in the year 1813, by the entry of Bernadotte into Prussia, and his victory over Marshal Ney at Dennewitz. The Swedes, though forming politically a secondary state, are individually one of the noblest branches of the great Teutonic race, which peopled the whole
, north of Europe, and is now spreading itself over the whole of North America. They possess in an eminent degree the qualities which peculiarly belong to this race, such as temperance, industry, hardihood, courage, kindness, and a strong sentiment of moral obligation. They are excellent soldiers; and, however small their resources, experience has uniformly shown, that their alliance is useful and their enmity dangerous. Their institutions are sufficiently liberal, and the population in general has a fuller enjoyment
of property and personal rights, than perhaps any other in Europe ; far more, certainly, than that of
; England, with all her wealth and power, and notwithstanding the boast of the present lord chancellor, that the meanest subject in Great Britain is better than the first in any other country.*
Their savans have placed the seat of the garden of Eden at the foot of the Norwegian mountains, as those of Belgium have discovered it in the swamps of the island of Walcheren. But if these are only innocent delusions, the country has advantages of much more importance. It is impossible for a traveller to pass through it without feeling respect and attachment for this excellent people. I have had the pleasure of visiting them myself; and I must say of their peasantry, as the governor in Paul and Virginia does of the cottages at the Isle of France, that I found their dwellings furnished with plain wood, but filled with cheerful faces and golden hearts. The Norwegians are an equally respectable and generous nation ; and it is much to be regretted, that so strong an enmity should exist between two branches of the same stock, so nearly allied in character, habits, and language, and whose political union, however unjust the act which brought it about, is a great and equal advantage to both.
** He felt from the bottom of his heart, that the meanest subject of this country (Great Britain) was better than the highest of any other country under heaven.'-Speech of lord chancellor Eldon, reported in the London Times of Nov. 26, 1819. If this article may be credited, the assassin Thistlewood was better than the duke of Richelieu or the president of the United States. With all their vanity, I doubt whether the Americans have ever gone beyond this in their pretensions.
An enmity not less strong and unfortunate exists between two other families of the same general race, which were also united by the congress of Vienna into one body politic, and now form the kingdom of the Netherlands. It would perhaps be as difficult to discover any rational foundation in nature or in politics for the cordial hatred which the Belgians and the Dutch feel for each other, as to give a distinct account of the feuds and jealousies, that often exercise the most serious influence upon the happiness of private and domestic life. Their origin and language are nearly the same; and although their habits and pursuits are somewhat different, this is no ground of mutual animosity, since it makes them in reality more necessary and useful to each other. But it seems to be a general law of human nature, that neighbouring nations should hate each other; and indeed, if our malignant feelings are to have any exercise at all, it must be upon our neighbours; since those, with whom we have no relation whatever, are of course indifferent to us.
This mutual enmity embitters the internal politics of the new kingdom, and divides the representation of the people into geographical parties upon every considerable question. Nor does it appear
general that the direct interest of either section of the country is promoted by the union. The prosperity of the Dutch depends upon commerce, and they ought perhaps to adopt the most liberal system of trade, in order to make their country, as far as possible, an emporium for the rest of Europe: but their policy, in this particular, is opposed by the necessity of protecting, to a certain extent, the manufactures and agriculture of Belgium. On the other hand, the industry of the Belgians is discouraged by the loss of the vast market of France, as well as by the competition of British manufactures, which the government, from motives foreign to the interest of either
part is not sufficiently anxious to prevent. Hence the Belgians look back with regret, and forward with hope to a union with France; and the downfall of this ill cemented fabric would probably be the first result of a new convulsion in Europe. The only interest really favoured by the existence of this kingdom is that of British industry, which, from the amicable relations between the two governments, obtains an additional market; and after all
of the country,