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manded all those members who were not domiciliated at Stutgard, to repair to their respective habitations.
On the following day he published an additional rescript, addressed to all the subjects of his kingdom.
"We William," &c.
"Dear and faithful subjects!— The address of the Assembly of the States of the 4th of June, according to which the majority has rejected in an inexplicable manner the definitive offers which we made, in our rescript of the 26th of May and its supplement, to conclude a constitutional compact, has brought the negotiation to such a point, that we must renounce all hope of attaining our object by means of a convention with this Assembly.
"However painful it be to our paternal heart to see the failure of all our efforts for the establishment of a constitution suited to all the different relations, and which might have consolidated tranquillity and order, and cause general satisfaction, our duties in the quality of sovereign, and our relation with other states, do not permit us to make to the demands of the States further sacrifices, which would cause the throne to lose its dignity, the government its force, and the people the independence of their representatives.
"In consequence, we have found ourselves under the necessity of dissolving our assembly, the operations of which could no longer make us hope for a happy issue.
"The exposé which we shall lay before our people, of the man
ner in which the work of the constitution has been hitherto treated, will convince every impartial person, that we have done, to effect so desirable an union, every thing that is compatible with the rights of our crown, and the principles of a good administration of the state; and that the project of the constitution, annexed to the rescript of the 26th of May, contains every thing that could be done to confirm the individual and political freedom of the people of Wurtemberg.
"We may confidently hope, that our cotemporaries and posterity will do justice to our way of acting, and that they will, with us, recognize as real and prudent friends to their country, the 42 members who have distinguished themselves by their proper and honourable conduct on this important occasion.
"But to do still all that depends upon us, that our faithful people may suffer as little as possible from the perverse condust of their representatives, we add to what we said in our rescript of the 26th of May, the declaration, that if the majority of our people signifies in the assemblies of the bailliages, or by the organ of their magistrates, that they accept the project of the constitution, under the restrictions contained in the said rescript, we shall, on our side, consider the constitutional compact as concluded, and shall put it in force.
"We also leave to the members who have virile votes, who have not personally voted against the acceptance of the constitution in the assembly of the States now dissolved, the liberty of acceding
We repeat at the same time the assurance that we will let our people enjoy from this moment all the benefits of the project of the constitution, in every thing that does not relate to a representation of the states.
On the other hand, we expect, with full confidence, that the subjects of our united kingdom will not suffer themselves to be shaken in the observance of their duties as subjects and citizens, but that they will persevere the more in their fidelity and obedience, as all opposition in every act tending to disturb public order and tranquil lity will be punished with all the rigour of the laws.
"Given at Stutgard, in his Majesty's Privy Council, June 5, 1817. By his Majesty's command."
The ministry of the interior, by order of his Majesty, published a proclamation on the 6th, containing a recital of all that happened at the late diet of Wurtemberg.
The sudden dissolution of the assembly of states having put an end to his Majesty's hopes of being able to effect the introduction of the representative system, he found it necessary to take upon himself the regulation of the finances for the years 1817 and 1818. Accordingly, on the 4th of September, he published a report addressed to his Majesty by the finance minister, in which the sum of 2,400,000 florins, with the addition of one tenth to make good the expense of the meeting of the states, was charged upon the nation. The king at the same time orders all public officers to keep a watchful eye upon such as may endeavour to persuade their fellow-burghers to resist the law, on
the pretext of its not being consented to by the states; and threatens all the severity of the law against the disturbers of the public peace.
This Duchy appears to have taken the lead of the other German states, with respect to the true principles of a free constitution. Its diet had just decided, in the month of March, that the estates of the nobles, and those of the order of knighthood, were henceforward to be liable to all the public burdens borne by the rest of the people; but at the same time it enacted, that the actual proprietors should be indemnified for the loss of the immunity from contribution which they formerly enjoyed, and upon the faith of the continuance of which they bought and held their estates.
It has been generally observed, that the greatest harmony and good feeling reigns in the assembly of representatives of this Duchy. The order of the peasantry sent deputies who defended their interests with moderation, but with firmness. The attacks made upon the immunity of the estates of the noblesse excited at first some animated debates, but the representatives of the noblesse yielded as soon as an indemnity was proposed.
A proposition made by the Duke of Saxe-Weimar to the grand diet sitting at Frankfort, that the constitution of his duchy should be placed under the guarantee of the Germanic Confederation, was formally confirmed by a vote delivered by Austria, and after certain explanations, was concurred
in by Prussia, Bavaria, Saxony, Hanover, Wurtemberg, Baden, Hesse, and Denmark.
On October the 20th the annual session of the States General was opened at the Hague with the usual solemnities. His Majesty delivered a speech from the throne, of which the following is the sub
His Majesty began with noticing the happy event of the birth of a son to the Prince of Orange, adding, that his education would be so directed, as to inspire him from his earliest childhood with a sense of his duties, and with the most ardent zeal for the freedom and wellfare of his countrymen.
The general peace, said his Majesty, has been undisturbed; and every day proves that the governments, as well as the people, are unanimous in the desire of maintaining it. On my side I have neglected nothing that can tend to ensure to this kingdom and its inhabitants the goodwill of foreign
to see the basis of them laid in this session. Some measures will be proposed that experience has shown to be useful to industry. Nothing has been more injurious to this effect than the dearness of provisions, which has checked the consumption of manufactured goods among the most numerous classes of people. The government itself has felt the influence of this state of things, by the great increase of its expenses, and the diminution of its receipts. Besides this, a great deficit has been caused by the not levying a tax upon inherited property, or a legacy tax.
The law respecting the militia has been put in execution for the first time, and has answered every expectation. Agriculture is flourishing. The fisheries, the colonial trade, and all branches connected with them, have improved; and the freedom of the corn trade by sea, while it secured the kingdom from scarcity at home, and kept the prices of bread in the country lower than among its neighbours, has confined to the ports of the Netherlands the privilege of being the granaries of all Europe.
His Majesty then notices the great expense caused by the fortification of the southern frontier. A great many public works, such as harbours and the like, have been, begun and continued, and even completed. vinces great roads have been made, which the most enlightened, inhabitants have for years designed in vain.
In some pro
His Majesty speaks with satisfaction of the joy which has been displayed
displayed at the installation of the universities, from which he expects the happiest results for the whole kingdom.
His Majesty concludes his speech in the following terms.
"Thus the number of objects is considerable on which we can look with satisfaction; and we can with the more tranquillity attend to the means of extricating ourselves from temporary difficulties which were independent of the human will. But the surest pledge of this is sought by the nation in the cordial operation of the King and the States General. Neither I nor your High Mightinesses, whose sentiments and example have so powerful an influence, will disappoint its confidence ; and the further confirmation of a social system, founded on principles of liberty and order, will be, with the blessing of God, the reward as well as the fruit, of our indefatigable efforts."
The following royal declaration respecting the tea-trade in Holland will probably be regarded as a curious document, and may be viewed as a dangerous inroad upon the price of that article in a neighbouring country.
We, William, by the grace of God, &c. having taken into our consideration the existing differences in the laws respecting the tea-trade, as they apply to the two principal divisions of the kingdom, judge it expedient that the same ought to be uniform; and seeing that the law of the 23d of March, 1815, for the establishment in our northern provinces of
an exclusive company for the trade to China, has not been attended with the results which were expected; but that, so far from our mercantile or trading subjects having subscribed for shares in the said company, in the books which have now been fully two years open for that purpose, they have expressed a general wish that the trade in the article of tea should be thrown open :
So we having heard our Council of State, and with the common consent of the States-General, have thought proper and resolved, and by these presents do think proper and resolve,
1st. That all the laws now in being relative to the tea-trade shall be, and the same are hereby, withdrawn and abolished.
2d. That the holders of shares in the aforesaid exclusive company shall be immediately reimbursed the amount paid on their respective subscriptions, together with the interest, at the rate of five per cent. per annum, from the day on which they were received until that of payment.
3d. That under the following regulations the general law of the 3d of October, 1816, for the levying of duties on imports and exports, shall from henceforward apply to tea, and that every individual shall be permitted to import tea into this kingdom, and have the uncontrolled possession thereof, immediately after the payment of the duties thereon; that is to say,
On Bohea and low Congou tea, florins 8 per 100lb.
On all other kinds of tea florins 16 per 100lb.
4th. That all teas of which proof
proof shall be given that they are imported direct and in entire cargoes from China, or the Dutch possessions in the East Indies, for the account of resident subjects, in ships built in this kingdom, the duty shall be only,
On Bohea and low Congou, florins 2 10 per 100lb.
On all other kinds 5 0 per 100lb. 5th. That Bohea and low Congou tea shall only be denominated such as are imported unmixed and in whole chests, and in which smaller chests or packages are not included.
6th That low Congou tea, even in whole chests, shall be denominated such, if its current value here at the time of its entry shall be, or exceed one guilder per pound; and that all tea for which entry is made at the low duties, may be taken over by any officer of the revenue at 1 florin per pound, adding 12 per cent. and the duty of the tea thereto, in conformity to the 223d and 224th articles of the law of the 3d of October 1816, as far as these are applicable to the case.
7th. That with reference to direct importations of tea from China, or from the Dutch settlements in the East Indies, his Majesty shall have the faculty of extending the privileges of Dutchbuilt ships to foreign bottoms, which, after strict investigation, shall appear to be Dutch property, at the time of the promulgation of this law, and have since continued to be so.
8th. That in case ships of the above two descriptions should not offer in sufficient number, his Majesty may license for one voyage only to China, or the Dutch set
tlements in the East Indies, for the importation of a cargo of tea, but within the period of four years from the promulgation of this law, any foreign-built ships, which, at the time of commencement of such voyage, shall fully appear to be the property of Dutch subjects.
9th. That the holders of licenses granted in consequence of the resolutions of the 12th of April 1815, on the importation of tea for the periodical public sales, which were intended to have taken place before the close of the present, or during the course of the next year, the tea so already imported, or which may be imported on or before the 15th of October 1818, shall be delivered into the uncontrolled possession of the consignees or importers, upon payment only of the same duties, which, by the present law, are to be levied on tea imported direct from China, or from the Dutch settlements in the East Indies, in Dutch-built ships, for account of resident subjects.
On the payment of the same duties all teas already imported, and remaining unsold in the warehouses of the department of trade and colonies, shall be delivered to the importers.
10th. That tea exported shall be subject to the duty (called Tabelle Regt.) of one-fifth per cent. on the value, or 3 stivers per 100lb. at the option of the exporter.
11th. That transit of tea through the kingdom shall not be allowed.
12th. That in computing the duty upon tea, the tares to be allowed, provided the packages are of the usual description, shall be,