Page:History of England (Macaulay) Vol 4.djvu/349

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pulpits, Jesuit confessionals and Jesuit colleges, what could he expect but that England and Scotland would join in one cry of reprobation? He therefore refused to accept the government of the Low Countries, and proposed that it should be entrusted to the Elector of Bavaria. The Elector of Bavaria was, after the Emperor, the most powerful of the Roman Catholic potentates of Germany. He was young, brave, and ambitious of military distinction. The Spanish Court was willing to appoint him, and he was desirous to be appointed; but much delay was caused by an absurd difficulty. The Elector thought it beneath him to ask for what he wished to have. The formalists of the Cabinet of Madrid thought it beneath the dignity of the Catholic King to give what had not been asked. Mediation was necessary, and was at last successful. But much time was lost; and the spring was far advanced before the new Governor of the Netherlands entered on his functions.[300]

William had saved the coalition from the danger of perishing by disunion. But by no remonstrance, by no entreaty, by no bribe, could he prevail on his allies to be early in the field. They ought to have profited by the severe lesson which had been given them in the preceding year. But again every one of them lingered, and wondered why the rest were lingering; and again he who singly wielded the whole power of France was found, as his haughty motto had long boasted, a match for a multitude of adversaries.[301] His enemies, while still unready, learned with dismay that he had taken the field in person at the head of his nobility. On no occasion had that gallant aristocracy appeared with more splendour in his train. A single circumstance may suffice to give a notion of the pomp and luxury of his camp. Among the musketeers of his household rode, for the first time, a stripling of seventeen, who soon afterwards succeeded to the title of Duke of Saint Simon, and to whom we owe those inestimable