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With these inglorious events closed the long reign of George III. Indeed, he had passed away before they were brought to their conclusion. He died on the 29th of January, 1820, in the eighty-second year of his age, and the sixtieth of his reign. Only six days previously had died his fourth son, the Duke of Kent, in his fifty-third year. But the duke had not departed without leaving an heir to the Throne in the Princess Victoria, who was born on the 24th of May, 1819. Could the old king have been made sensible of these events, there were others which showed that his line, which of late had appeared likely to die out in one generation, notwithstanding his numerous family, was again giving signs of perpetuation. On the 26th of March, 1819, a son had also been born to the Duke of Cambridge, and a son to the Duke of Cumberland on May 27th of the same year, afterwards King of Hanover.The English Roman Catholics produced an historianDr. Lingardwho, for the correctness and strength of his diction, as well as the extent of his learning, ranks among the first names in this department of literature. He was a man of great force of mind, remarkable acuteness in testing historical evidence, and considerable powers of description. Being a priest, it was not to be expected that he would be impartial in his treatment of the events and characters of the Reformation, and the subsequent conflicts between the Churches of England and Rome. Of his own Church he was a zealous defender and a skilful apologist; but where that bias did not interfere, his judgments were generally sound. He died in 1851.
Lord Palmerston and Mr. Poulett Thompson treated the apprehensions of Lord Dudley Stuart as visionary, and expressed their conviction that there was nothing in the conduct of the Czar to excite either alarm or hostility in Great Britain. Their real opinions were very different. A few days later an event occurred which showed how little Russia was to be relied upon; and that it was impossible to restrain her aggressive propensities, even by the most solemn treaty obligations, undertaken in the face of Europe, and guaranteed by the Great Powers. Cracow, which comprised a small territory about 490 square miles in extent, with a population of about 123,000, including the city, was at the general settlement in 1815 formed into a free State, whose independence was guaranteed by the Treaty of Vienna in the following terms:"The town of Cracow, with its territory, is declared to be for ever a free, independent, and strictly neutral city, under the protection of Russia, Austria, and Prussia." During the insurrection of Poland in 1830 the little State of Cracow could not repress its sympathies, and the news of the outbreak was received there with the greatest enthusiasm. After the destruction of the Polish army, persons who were compromised by the revolt sought an asylum in Cracow; and 2,000 political refugees were found settled there in 1836. This served as a pretext for the military occupation of the city in February of that year, notwithstanding the joint guarantee that it should never be entered by a foreign army. This was only a prelude to the ultimate extinction of its independence, which occurred ten years later. Lord Palmerston launched a vigorous protest, but it had no result.
Men for the most part leave the regulation of their chief concerns to the prudence of the moment, or to the discretion of those whose interest it is to oppose the wisest laws; such laws, namely, as naturally help to diffuse the benefits of life, and check that tendency they have to accumulate in the hands of a few, which ranges on one side the extreme of power and happiness, and on the other all that is weak and wretched. It is only, therefore, after having passed through a thousand errors in matters that most nearly touch their lives and liberties, only after weariness of evils that have been suffered to reach a climax, that men are induced to seek a remedy for the abuses which oppress them, and to recognise the clearest truths, which, precisely on account of their simplicity, escape the notice of ordinary minds, unaccustomed as they are to analyse things, and apt to receive their impressions anyhow, from tradition rather than from inquiry.Having given the principal charges of Duchesneau against Frontenac, it is time to give those of Frontenac against Duchesneau. The governor says that all the coureurs de bois would be brought to submission but for the intendant and his allies, who protect them, and carry on trade by their means; that the seigniorial house of Duchesneau's partner, La Chesnaye, is the constant resort of these outlaws; and that he and his associates have large storehouses at Montreal, Isle St. Paul, and Rivire du Loup, whence they send goods into the Indian country, in contempt of the king's orders.  Frontenac also complains of numberless provocations from the intendant. "It is no fault of mine that I am not on good terms with M. Duchesneau; for I have done every thing I could to that end, being too submissive to your Majesty's commands not to suppress my sharpest indignation the moment your will is known to me. But, Sire, it is not so with him; and his desire to excite new disputes, in the hope of making me appear their 61 principal author, has been so great that the last ships were hardly gone, when, forgetting what your Majesty had enjoined upon us both, he began these dissensions afresh, in spite of all my precautions. If I depart from my usual reserve in regard to him, and make bold to ask justice at the hands of your Majesty for the wrongs and insults I have undergone, it is because nothing but your authority can keep them within bounds. I have never suffered more in my life than when I have been made to appear as a man of violence and a disturber of the officers of justice: for I have always confined myself to what your Majesty has prescribed; that is, to exhorting them to do their duty when I saw that they failed in it. This has drawn upon me, both from them and from M. Duchesneau, such cutting affronts that your Majesty would hardly credit them." 
This base and disproportionate sentence startled the people of England. In Scotland then party spirit ran furiously high. As there were clubs for advocating thorough reform, so there were others for discouraging and crushing it. The Tory arbitrary principle was rampant, and Muir was the victim of it.
Another successful expedition this year was one against the Cape of Good Hope. This settlement, so desirable for Britain, with her Indian possessions, had been yielded up by the Addington Administration, at the Peace of Amiens, most imprudently. A body of five thousand men was dispatched for its recovery, under Sir David Baird, in a fleet commanded by Sir Home Popham. They arrived in January, and the Dutch soldiers fled at the first attack. Retiring into the interior, General Beresford was dispatched after them, whereupon they surrendered, on condition that they should be sent to Holland without being deemed prisoners of war.In France Beccarias book became widely popular, and many writers helped to propagate his ideas, such as Servan, Brissot, Lacretelle, and Pastoret. Lacretelle attributes the whole impulse of criminal law reform to Beccaria, while regretting that Montesquieu had not said enough to attract general attention to the subject. His book is said to have so changed the spirit of the old French criminal tribunals, that, ten years before the Revolution, they bore no resemblance to their former selves. All the younger magistrates gave their judgments more according to the principles of Beccaria than according to the text of the law. The result of the agitation appeared in the Royal Ordinances of 1780 and 1788, directed to the diminution of torture, the only reforms which preceded the Revolution. It is said that the last time anyone was tortured in France was in the year 1788, the last year of the ancien rgime. At the very beginning of the Revolution more than a hundred different offences ceased to incur the penalty of death.