England and the Orleans Monarchy

By Major John Hall | Go to book overview

CHAPTER IX
THE CORDIAL UNDERSTANDING

LORD ABERDEEN, the Secretary for Foreign Affairs in Sir Robert Peel's Cabinet, had held the same office in the government of the Duke of Wellington. He had had to deal, as will be remembered, with the question of the recognition of Louis Philippe and with the attitude which England was to observe towards the revolution in Belgium. His first experience of diplomacy had been gained in the days of the great war. In 1813, as quite a young man, he had been sent upon a special mission to Vienna, and had been concerned in the negotiations which had resulted in the entry of Austria into the coalition. During the campaign in Germany he had accompanied the headquarters of the allied armies and had been profoundly impressed by the scenes of which he had been a witness. Whether justified or not, the belief prevailed widely that, should complications arise, the spectacle of Leipsic after "the battle of the nations" would be ever present before the eyes of England's Foreign Secretary.1

With regard to the more important questions which the Foreign Office had in hand, or with which it had recently been called upon to deal, Aberdeen was in substantial agreement with Palmerston. He approved of his policy in the Egyptian affair and endorsed his views as to the necessity of encouraging Spain to shake off the influence of France. But he was at the same time intensely desirous of replacing

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1
Jarnac, Lord Aberdeen, Revue des deux mondes, 15 juillet, 1860.

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