TO MARCH, 1748).
Cumberland's defeat at Lafeld--Wentworth at Vienna and in Italy--Failure of Austrian siege of Genoa--Repulse of French attack on Piedmont--Subsequent inaction in Italy-- Cumberland supports pacifists--Saxe-Ligonier overture-- Opposition of Prince of Orange and Bentinck--Attitude of Newcastle--Controversies in English Ministry--Sandwich sent back to Holland--Saxe's extraordinary letter--Renewed controversy--Saxe formulates French demands-- Sandwich entrusted with negotiation--Bentinck's mission to England--Interview of Sandwich with Puyzieulx at Liège--Fall of Bergen-op-Zoom-Depression of Newcastle-- Sandwich and Bentinck reassure him--Negotiations with Wall--Military Convention for 1748--Difficulties about command in Italy and the Netherlands--Convention signed --Newcastle persists in opposing early peace--Legge sent to Berlin--Ministers nominated to Aix-la-Chapelle-Resignation of Chesterfield--Newcastle takes Northern Department --Bedford becomes Secretary of State and Sandwich First Lord of the Admiralty.
DURING the six weeks of June and July, 1747, that Sandwich spent in England, the General Election returned a very satisfactory majority for the Government,1 but the allied cause met with two disasters on the Continent which rendered the convention of 12 January so much waste paper. In the Netherlands Cumberland never obtained his promised hundred and forty thousand men, both Austrians and Dutch being in default. And his army, when collected, was defeated at Lafeld on 2 July. The defeat was not in itself discreditable, as only part of the army was engaged, the retreat was effected without disorder, and the French losses were considerably____________________