to the north-eastern extremity of Ireland; and Trouville had better reason than Van Tromp to fix a broom at his masthead. And then Ireland was lost. The French fleet was destroyed, by very superior numbers, at La Hogue, and the Grand Alliance, aided at last by the ships, and the men, and the money of England, bore down the resistance of exhausted France. William was acknowledged King of England at the close of a struggle which had begun twenty-five years before. Lewis, having formally offered to support James's election to the throne of Poland, when Sobieski died, gave him up. Vauban complained that the war had been too prosperous on the Continent to justify so disastrous a termination.
From the peace of Ryswick the lengthening shadow of the Spanish succession falls upon the scene, and occupies the last years alike of William, of Leopold, and of Lewis. It was known that the King of Spain could not live long; and as the prize came near, Europe, for four years, was hushed in expectation.