Economic Annals of the Nineteenth Century

By William Smart | Go to book overview
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CHAPTER XIX
1813. THE ALLIANCE OF EUROPE

ONCE the tide had turned against the "ruler of France," as England still persisted in calling him, it ran full and fast. In the early part of the year, the victorious Russians swept over North Germany. In February, Prussia rushed to arms,1 and made alliance with them. In March, Sweden entered into treaty with the court of London; Hamburg freed itself from the yoke; the allies formally decreed the abolition of "the so-called Continental System"; and Germany again was opened to British commerce. In England now there was no talk of peace. The nation for once was unanimous that the hour and the chance had come. The unprecedented sums asked for subsidies and other military purposes were voted with scarcely a dissentient voice. The armaments of Great Britain rose to their maximum, and the national expenditure of the year touched £109,000,000, the highest point yet reached -- £74 millions raised by taxation and £35 millions by loans.2

New alliances.

Great Britain and Russia signed a convention in June, at "a period when Providence had manifestly favoured their arms," to "adjust the nature and extent of the pecuniary succours, and the assistance which the two crowns should mutually afford to each other during the war." Russia undertook to employ 160,000 effective troops of every description, exclusive of fortress

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1
It was then that Arndt wrote the lyric of the German faith, "Was ist der Deutschen Vaterland?"
2
Table of Public Income, Expenditure, etc., for year ending 5th January, 1814, in Annual Register for 1814, p. 365, and Hansard, xxviii. Append. i. The Ordinary Revenue (permanent and annual duties), consisting of Customs, Excise, Stamps, Land and Assessed Taxes, Post Office, etc., amounted to over £41 millions net; the War Taxes (Customs, Excise and Property Tax) to £24 millions; and other extraordinary resources, to £9 millions.

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