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clares, that he is hereby understood to be comprehended in it as fülly, as if his name had been speci; fically mentioned.
HORATIO GATES. This convention, concerning which there appears • to have been a great deal of ceremony for very little purpose, news more the pride and ambi. iion of the British General, than his wisdom and prudence. The requisitions which he made, provided they had not been granted, would have exposed him and his whole army to certain ruin and destruction; for there was not the least probability that he was able to fight such a superior force, which knew his weak. ness, and were provided for any attack that he could have made. He might, as he threatened, have led on his men, and refused quarter; but under the presa sing influence of hunger and fatigue, it is not to be fupposed they would have gained any thing, except the honour of falling like mad-men, for the sake of a cause which they never examined, but taken upon the word of their officers and commanders. Men ex. hauited with hunger and fatigue, fainting under a deсау of animal spirits, were not soldiers very fit for rushing upon an enemy, three times their number, and fupplied with the needful supplies of nature, which they wanted. General Gates knew well what would have been the consequence, but was unwilling to leave the slaughter of a British army, as a monument in history, of the severity of the colonists towards their oppressing brethren. He seems to have humour: ed the British General rather, as one under an infatuation, than dealt with him as a general of an army. Gates will be remembered for his humanity, as well as greatness of soul, while history continues to hand
down the transactions of mankind to posterity; and the convention of Saratoga will remain a proof, both of his mercy and politeness.
General Burgoyne certainly made as much by thiş convention as he possibly could have expected ; and much more than his situation promised; but his nice. ness concerning punétilios, might have marred all liş success in it, and brought sudden ruin upon a number of brave and innocent men. The mercy of his enemies, and the prudence of their commander, wrought more for him than either his own wisdom, or his merit. Had General Gates and his army been in his situation, there are many reasons to determine us to think, that he would not have ihewn the same demen. cy that he hiinself met with.---His daring and bloody proclamation, to set loose the scalping favages upon peaceable and quiet peasants, who were em. ployed about their rural employments, as our people at home, declared a disposition that savoured nothing of
mercy or clemency: and it would have been no wonder, if they had measured to this boaiting officer that measure which he threatened to mete out to them." It was however, happy that the sword was restrained, and so many lives preserved; and it ought to teach our commanders to show more mercy than they have done on fome occasions. Though our proud nation has declared these colonies rebels, the rest of Europe have a different opinion of thein, since they became independent; and our cruelry to them, may on some future occasion, bring feverities upon our own heads.
CH A P.
CHA P. XIII.
The confused state of the nation at home. --The Ministry
alarmed by the news of the Convention at Saratoga.Conceal it as long as they can.---Occasions many debates in parliament.--A treaty of commerce between the Colonies and France.
"HE national expectations were raised to such an
high pitch, with regard to the success of the northern army, that the news of its flow operations and embarrasments, began to operate in creating meLancholy and apprehensions of disappointment throughout the whole nation. The progrefs of General Burgoyne
in his march from Canada to Albany, was not so rapid and successful as the ministry had given reason to expect in their confidence of boasting. Tho' some of his advanced parties had been successful and · defeated their enemy, Fet their own loss was confiderable, and their progress to Albany interrupted þy so many accidents, that the people at home began to be uneasy, and concluded that the secrets of this expedition were not fairly represented. They had almost anticipated the whole extent of the disas. ter before the news of it had arrived ; and the catastrophe was not more extraordinary than many foresaw it would happen to be. The whole nation was in an universal murmur concerning the iffue of this expedition. The friends of the minister endeavoured to colour those delays and disappointments with all their usual arts of apology, and promised fanguinely upon
the success of the event, from the caution that was used in execution of this project. All their arts were insufficient to disguise their own apprehensions, or to persuade the people that they were not in possession of intelligence the most unfavourable to the nation and dishonourable to themselves.
Of all the com manders that were sent to America, there were none in whom the zealous promoters of the war placed greater hopes and confidence than in Gen, Burgoyne ; his abilities were extolled beyond the ordinary bounds of commendation, and it was thought impoflible that any American force could oppofe him. The Scotch nation, who were sanguinary promoters of this ruinous war, at the same instant that they were reproaching General Howe, passed the most extravagant encomiums upon General Burgoyne. He had threatened the colonists with severities, which they approved of, and their sanguine hopes made them believe that he was well able to accomplish his threatenings. Some accounts that came from America preceding the convention at Saratoga, which were not very favourable, were interpreted as reports raised by the patriots to weaken the hands of government ; and often thipmasters, who arrived at Port Glafgow and Greenock brought tidings of great comfort to the mi. nistry, which were contrived on their voyages, or received from others, at the second, third, or fourth hands. These upauthenticated reports in a short time lost all credit, and even the Scots, who thought the success of this expedition infallible, began to doubt and waver coucerning its success.
General Burgoyne's fucceís at Ticonderago, with the total defeat and ruin which for a seafon every where attended the Americans in their precipitate
fight on the borders of Lake George, excited the greatest triumph and exultation on the fide of the mi. nistry; and whilst it wonderfully raised their spirits, was considered nearly as crowning the hopes of all those who had supported or approved of the war. So ready are mankind to be elevated above measure with what they fondly wish for and expect. It was observed that the northern expedition was the favour. ite creature of government. The transactions on the further side of Jersey, and the operations about Phi. ladelphia, were only considered in a very subordinate point of view. As the minister for the American de. partinent had all the honour and applause of this meafure, which was considered entirely as a creature of his own, it is not to le reckoned wonderful, that both he and his brethren in office should be deeply interest. ed in the event, and approve themselves highly on the appearance of success.
The subsequent dispatches from their favourite Ge. neral did not long support the hopes which were founded on the first successes. The unexpected difficulties and delays which the army experienced in adyancing a few miles fom Skenesborcugh to the southward, were, however, counterbalanced in opinion by its arrival on the Hudson's River, the retreat of the enemy from the Fort Edward, their abandoning Fort George and the Lake, by which a free passage was opened from Ticonderago, and St. Leger's success in defcating and ruining the Tryon county militia near Fort Stanwix. All the former and present sanguine expectations which had been formed, were however in a great measure overthrown by the advices which were received fometime previous to the meeting of parliament; an event which was probably this year