Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

Frankreich,

famille royale d'Angleterre, ni S. A. I. M le prince Romanowsky, duc de No 560. Leuchtenberg, membre de la famille impériale de Russie, ne pourraient accepter britannien la couronne de Grèce, si elle était offerte par la nation hellénique. soussignés saisissent cette occasion d'offrir à M. Bulgaris l'assurance de leurs 13. Decbr. sentiments distingués.

ག Les und

Russland,

1862.

Athènes, (1) 13 décembre.

P. Bourée.

P. Campbell Scarlett.
Bloudoff.

No. 561.

GROSSBRITANNIEN. - Mr. H. Elliot an d. kön. Min. d. Ausw.

Die erste Unter

redung mit den griechischen Ministern betr., nebst Abschrift eines denselben übergebenen (nicht unterzeichneten) Memorandums.

Athens, December 25, 1862. (Received January 3, 1863.)

Gross

25. Decbr.

1862.

My Lord, I arrived at Athens on the 23rd instant, and immediately No. 501. took steps for seeing M. Boulgaris, the President of the Provisional Government, britannien, and M. Diamantopoulos, the Minister for Foreign Affairs. M. Boulgaris does not speak French, and I was, therefore, obliged to communicate, to him through an interpreter the substance of the instructions I had received from your Lordship. He asked if I could let him have a copy of them, to which I replied that I was not authorized to do so, but that I would give him unofficially a paper embodying the substance of what I had just communicated. I have the honour to inclose herewith a copy of the document which I sent to him, in the form of an unsigned Memorandum. Both M. Boulgaris and M. Diamanto¶ poulos expressed in lively terms their deep sense of the sympathy and goodwill towards Greece of which Her Majesty's Government have given proof, and alluded to the universal and spontaneous burst of enthusiasm which has animated the whole Greek nation towards Her Majesty, the Royal family, and Great Britain in general. I replied that it was impossible for an Englishman not to be moved by such a universal exhibition of the admiration felt for our Sovereign, and by the recognition of the blessing of the free institutions under which it is our happiness to live. I then inquired, now that they are aware that His Royal Highness Prince Alfred cannot be their King, what were their views and intentions regarding the choice of a Sovereign, adding that Her Majesty's Government considered that King Ferdinand of Portugal united in his person more of the necessary qualifications than any other Prince who had been thought of.¶I found that notwithstanding the presentation of the formal note upon the subject by Mr. Scarlett, the two Ministers had apparently continued to look upon Prince Alfred as the only possible King, and they told me plainly that they had not thought of any one else. ¶ I took the liberty of pointing out that when the impossibility of His Royal Highness's acceptation became apparent, it seemed that in the interest of Greece they would do well to endeavour to lead the public mind to look towards an eligible candidate, and that no good

[ocr errors]

Gross

25. Decbr.

1862.

No. 561. would come of continuing obstinately to shut their eyes to the fact that another britannien, choice must be made. I was aware, I said, that there had been some wild talk about the injustice of our depriving the Greeks of their liberty of choosing whom they pleased, but they must allow me to say that it would be preposterous to pretend that Her Majesty had not an equal right to decline permitting a member of her family to accept a foreign Crown. Her Majesty's Government, I continued, had not the slightest wish to deprive the Greek nation of perfect liberty in selecting their future King; they considered King Ferdinand the most eligible candidate, but had no intention of imposing him or any one else upon the Greeks all that they did expect was, that the same moderation which has hitherto marked the revolution would be continued, and that a Sovereign may be chosen who may be a guarantee of order at home and in the foreign relations of the country, so as to enable Her Majesty to carry out her intention of ceding to Greece the Ionian Islands, and thus giving the strongest possible evidence of a desire to advance the prosperity of the nation. ¶ I have, &c.

To Earl Russell, London.

Henry Elliot.

Memorandum.

It is Her Majesty's earnest desire to contribute to the welfare and prosperity of Greece.

The Treaties of 1827 and 1832 bear evidence of this desire on the part of the British Crown.

The Provisional Government of Greece declared, upon the withdrawal of King Otho from Greece, that their mission is to maintain for Greece Constitutional Monarchy and the relations of peace with all other States.

If the new Assembly of the Representatives of the Greek nation should prove faithful to this declaration, should maintain Constitutional Monarchy, and should refrain from all aggression against neighbouring States, and if they should choose a Sovereign against whom no well-founded objection could be raised, Her Majesty would see in this course of conduct a promise of future freedom and happiness for Greece. In such a case, Her Majesty, with a view to strengthen the Greek Monarchy, would be ready to announce to the Senate and Representatives of the Ionian Islands Her Majesty's wish to see them united to the Monarchy of Greece, and form, with Greece, one united State; and if this wish should be expressed also by the Ionian Legislature, Her Majesty would then take steps for obtaining the concurrence of the Powers who were parties to the Treaty by which the seven Ionian Islands and their Dependencies were placed as a separate State under the Protectorate of the British Crown.

I am to take care, in my communications upon this subject, to make it understood that the election of a Prince who should be the symbol and precursor of revolutionary disturbance, or of the adoption of an aggressive policy towards

Turkey, would prevent any relinquishment of Her Majesty's Protectorate of the No. 561. Ionian Islands.

Her Majesty's Government trust that in the selection of a Sovereign to rule over Greece, the Greek Assembly will choose for their King a Prince from whom they can expect a regard for religious liberty, a respect for constitutional freedom, and a sincere love of peace. A Prince possessing these qualities will be fitted to promote the happiness of Greece, and will be honoured with the friendship and confidence of Her Majesty the Queen.

Grossbritannien, 25. Decbr.

1862.

No. 562.

Das Verlangen der

GROSSBRITANNIEN. Mr. H. Elliot a. d. Min. d. Ausw.
Griechen, den Prinzen Alfred zum Könige zu haben, betr.

Grossbritannien, 25. Dec.

1862.

Athens, December 25, 1862. (Received January 3, 1863.) My Lord, As some time had already passed since the Greek Govern- No. 562. ment and nation had been officially informed by the Representatives of the Powers that neither Prince Alfred nor the Duke of Leuchtenberg could accept the Crown of Greece if it should be offered to them, I expected on my arrival at Athens to find that the merits at least of the different possible candidates would have been canvassed and discussed. Nothing, however, could be more completely erroneous than this expectation. The idea of having Prince Alfred for their King had acquired such an absolute hold over the nation that they cling to it with passion, and have hitherto resolutely persisted in refusing to recognize the impossibility of the realization of their hopes, and from the moment of my arrival I have spared no pains in endeavouring to put an end to all illusion upon this head. ¶This morning I was waited upon by a deputation from one of the three political clubs of Athens, which desired to express the unanimous wish of the Greek nation to be ruled over by Prince Alfred; and the letter of which I have the honour to inclose a copy was read to me by the President in the name of the rest of the members. I replied by thanking these gentlemen for the manner in which they alluded to the Queen, to His Royal Highness, and to the British nation in general; but I said that, however much I must regret that the first communication I had to make should be of a nature to produce disappointment in a people who were just giving such a flattering proof of their feelings towards us, I should not be justified if I did not seize the very earliest opportunity of pointing out that they were aiming at what is absolutely impossible, reminding them that Her Majesty's Government had just taken a solemn engagement not to accept the Crown for Prince Alfred, if it should be offered to His Royal Highness. I begged them not to consider this a mere form of words, which might afterwards be set aside, but to regard it as an irrevocable determination which could not be departed from without a flagrant breach of good faith. I told them that Her Majesty's Government having looked round to find the Prince who would be most likely to contribute to the prosperity of Greece, considered that it was King Ferdinand of Portugal who appeared to

Gross

25. Dec.

No. 562. possess in the highest degree the necessary qualifications. The deputation britannien, seemed much disappointed at hearing so plainly that they must abandon all hopes 1862. of Prince Alfred, but they expressed neither approval nor disapprobation at the mention of King Ferdinand, beyond a passing allusion to his religion and to the want of an heir after his death. The club is not composed of persons of any considerable weight, but it may perhaps become a channel through which the public will learn that His Royal Highness Prince Alfred must not now be looked upon as eligible for their Crown. I have, &c.

To Earl Russell, London.

Henry Elliot.

No. 563.
Gross-

No. 563.

GROSSBRITANNIEN.—Mr. H. Elliot a. d. königl. Min. d. Ausw.

Berichtigung einer Mittheilung griechischer Blätter über seine einer Deputation ertheilte Antwort, betr. den Prinzen Alfred.

My Lord,

Athens, January 2, (received January 10) 1863.

In the account given by the Greek newspapers of the

answer I returned to one of the Deputations from the Greek nation, I am reprebritannien, sented to have stated that the acceptance of the Crown by Prince Alfred was

2. Januar

1863. ,,for the moment" impossible. It is, perhaps, superfluous for me to assure

your Lordship that no such expression fell from my lips, and that my language was such as could not have failed to convey that the decision of Her Majesty's Government was final and irrevocable. I have, &c.

To Earl Russell, London.

Henry Elliot.

No. 564.
Gross-

No. 564.

GROSSBRITANNIEN. Min. d. Ausw. a. Mr. H. Elliot in Athen. Dank für die Anhänglichkeit Griechenlands an den Prinzen Alfred, und Empfehlung der Thron candidatur des Königs Don Ferdinand von Portugal.

Foreign Office, January 15, 1863. (Extract.) You have not failed to express to the Greek Provisional britannien, Government the sentiments of regard and friendly interests for the welfare of 1863. Greece which animate Her Majesty's Government. Her Majesty's Govern

15. Januar

ment have rightly understood the election of Prince Alfred as a tribute to the virtues of his illustrious parents, and an act of homage to the freedom enjoyed under the British Monarchy. The acceptance of the Crown by Prince Alfred, however, being impossible, Her Majesty's Government have thought it due to the people of Greece to endeavour to ascertain who, among the Princes of Europe, not excluded by the agreements of the Protecting Powers, would be likely to promote the welfare of Greece. The first requisite, in the opinion of Her Majesty's Government, was attachment to constitutional principles, and

Gross

15. Januar

a readiness to perform faithfully the duties of a Sovereign in a free representa- No. 564. tive Monarchy. In this respect no one was more clearly eligible than King britannien, Ferdinand of Portugal, whose wisdom, moderation, and respect for liberty had 1863. been proved by experience. ¶ King Ferdinand, however, I am sorry to say, has, on account of his affection for his sons and for the country he has adopted, absolutely declined to allow his name to be put forward.

To Mr. H. Elliot, Athens.

Russell.

No. 565.

FRANKREICH. - Min. d. Ausw. an die kaiserl. Gesandtschaften im Auslande. - Die Candidatur des Königs Don Ferdinand von Portugal auf den griechischen Thron und den Entschluss Englands, auf das Protectorat über die ionischen Inseln zu Gunsten Griechenlands zu verzichten, betr.

Paris, le 21 décembre 1862.

21. Dec.

1862.

Monsieur, la dépêche que je vous ai adressée le 4 de ce mois *), au sujet _No. 565. Frankreich, des affaires de Grèce, vous a fait connaître les incidents à la suite desquels les trois Puissances se sont mises d'accord pour maintenir les stipulations du protocole signé par elles en 1830 et qui excluent du trône de Grèce les membres de leurs maisons régnantes. En conséquence de cet accord, les envoyés de France, d'Angleterre et de Russie ont notifié au Gouvernement provisoire de Grèce une déclaration collective portant que ni le prince Alfred d'Angleterre, ni le duc de Leuchtenberg ne pourront accepter la couronne de Grèce si elle leur était offerte par la nation hellénique **). ¶ La seule cause vraiment sérieuse de complications ayant été ainsi écartée, les Puissances ont dû naturellement se préoccuper de la désignation d'un prince qui, en dehors des trois familles régnantes, pourrait être recommandé aux suffrages de la Grèce. Pour ce qui nous concerné, nous n'entendons apporter dans cette recherche d'autres intérêts que celui de la Grèce elle-même, et nous sommes prêts à accueillir la candidature de tout prince qui, par son âge et ses aptitudes personnelles, offrira les garanties désirables. C'est en me plaçant à ce point de vue que j'ai envisagé dans mes entretiens avec l'ambassadeur d'Angleterre et le chargé d'affaires de Russie diverses combinaisons qui, après avoir donné lieu à des ouvertures demeurées sans résultat, ont dû être successivement abandonnées. ¶ Le Gouvernement de Sa Majesté Britannique avait en dernier lieu suggéré le nom du roi Don Ferdinand de Portugal, père du roi régnant. Ce prince est dans la force de l'âge, il a l'expérience du Gouvernement; il réunissait donc les qualités essentielles pour occuper le trône de Grèce, et nous nous sommes empressés de faire savoir à Londres et à Saint-Pétersbourg que ce choix avait notre approbation. Toutefois, les démarches faites auprès du roi Don Ferdinand n'ont pu le décider à donner son assentiment aux offres

*) No. 555.

**) No. 560.

« AnteriorContinuar »