Page:A French Volunteer of the War of Independence.djvu/170

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some object,—no matter what it was,—to distract their attention. Were not duels fought about the relative merits of Gluck and Piccini, for want of other motives? A pretext should have been found to take up the quarrel of the Stadtholder and Holland, and defend the United Provinces against Prussia. A war with Prussia would have suited the belligerent instincts of our impulsive and over numerous youths, and would have served to retard the advent of that terrible drama called the French Revolution by at least ten years. More than this even should have been done, and when England was in a dangerous situation owing to her struggle with her revolted colonies, France should have acted as mediator, and not as an auxiliary to the other side. We should have recovered Canada, Spain, and Gibraltar; nor would there have been much difficulty (in mediating), for in the Congress of the thirteen States, six members, including Washington himself, voted against a rupture with the mother country;—but it was decreed on high that it was not to be so.