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Eylau: Precis Des Travaux de la Grande Armee

Military Subjects: Battles & Campaigns

 

Eylau: An Abstract of the Chronological Exploits of the Grand Army

Official Papers: The Last  Negotiation between France and England. Declaration of  the British S.M. October 21, 1806.

The negotiations in which S.M.  was engaged with France, being finished without success, the king judged it suitable to make to its subjects and the whole of Europe, a public declaration of the circumstances that brought a result so distressing for S.M.  We do not have anything more in our heart than the conclusion of a sure and lasting peace.  We deplore the continuation of a war which disturbs the happiness of so many nations, and which, despite all the successes that accompany its armies, is so expensive on its faithful and affectionate subjects.  But it has confidence that there is no more today, either in its States, or in the other parts of Europe, that only one feeling, that of a conviction even more intimate than the re-establishment of general peace is delayed only by the injustice and the ambition of the enemy.

The French Government, not content with the immense acquisitions that it made on the Continent, still perseveres in a system destructive to the independence of all the other nations.  The war continues not to obtain security, but to make conquests;  and the negotiations of peace appear to have another object of only inspiring in the neighboring powers a false security, while France prepared, combined and carried out its continual projects of invasion and aggression.

Its conduct, during the last discussions, offered only too much evidence of this provision. 

The negotiation started with the French Government offering a peace treaty on the basis of its current possessions, which were admitted as items of mutual compensation, which had been attacked without the lightest pretext of hostilities, and one added moreover the insurance to us that the German States of S. M. would be restored. 

Such a proposal appeared with S.M.  to offer an equitable base of negotiations:  it was in consequence received with the understanding that S.M.  would lead the negotiation in liaison with its allies. 

This basis was not followed by their own admission on both sides so that the enemy deviated some, and on points of so high importance, that S.M.  was at once obliged to declare that unless the principle suggested by France itself was not maintained, the open communications between the two governments, were going at the moment to be closed.  This declaration brought, on behalf of France, new protests on the provision where it was to make considerable sacrifices to arrive at peace, if one wanted to continue the negotiations;  and at the same time they raised difficulties on the insufficiency of the authority of the person that S.M.  had charged with making this communications.  Consequently, measures were taken by S.M.  to open a regular negotiation, by ministers duly authorized, in order to ensure itself in a satisfactory and real way, if it were possible to obtain an honorable peace for the king and his allies, and compatible with the general safety of Europe. 

During these intervening matters, a minister, sent by the emperor of Russia and charged with treating for the same object, in liaison with the government of S.M., was brought by the artifices of the enemy to sign a separated treaty, also in contradictory conditions with the honor and the interests of S.M.I.  

Without letting himself to be shaken by this unexpected event, the king continued to treat on the same principles as before.  He rested with a confidence that his experiences well justified, the good faith and the firmness of an ally, with which he had begun the negotiations in concert, and the doubt he had, during all the course of the discussions, assured him their interests, like his, were proper. 

The French Government, on the contrary, acting as if this event was the most significant and most decisive victory, left each day with more invitations and offers which it had to make.  Not only did this change the mutually agreed upon basis of the negotiation with Great Britain, but it violated, on points even more important, all the principles of the good faith towards Russia.  The principal lure offered to its minister, had been the conservation of Germany.  However, before the decision of Russia on this treaty could be known, France had already destroyed the form and the constitution of the Germanic Empire.  It had made fall under its yoke a great portion of the States and provinces of this empire, and not content to run roughshod over its recent pledges, it had, in same the time, excited the Porte Ottomans (Porte Sublime, Ottoman Empire) with measurements subversive of its agreements with Russia. 

Such conduct towards S.M., its allies and all the independent nations, had left little hope of a favorable outcome from the negotiation, so the king’s plenipotentiary required their passports to return to England.  Initially this request was eluded for some time without pretexts or precedence, and then the Government French, by making some material concessions and while giving to understand that, in the course of a later discussion, it could make some moreover trailed day in day until finally one announced in Paris that the emperor of Russia had rejected with indignation the separated treaty, concluded without authorization by his minister. 

In consequence of this significant event, the minister of S.M.  accepted the strongest insurances that France was prepared to make the greatest sacrifices to conclude peace with England, and to return peace in the World. 

It appears however that the goal of these insurances was to engage S.M.  in a separate negotiation, from which its allies would be excluded:  a proposal which had been disallowed by the principles, and that S.M.  could even less agree to at time when the guidance of Russia imposed a new obligation to him not to separate its interests from those of one so faithful ally.  The king constantly refused to lend an ear to these insidious openings; but S.M.  took the most effective means to draw aside all the pretexts of delay, and to accelerate, if it was possible, the happy outcome of the negotiation.  The confidential communications that constantly had been maintained carefully with Russia, reflects S.M.  with specific scope of the conditions to which this power would agree to make peace.  Consequently the English plenipotentiary recently ordered to work with France, with additional authoritative requests, and those of its ally, to settle those articles separately, and to even conclude as a basis for a provisional treaty, of which the effect would take place only after the agreement of Russia. 

France, after some objections, agreed to follow this mode of negotiation.  It was offered to S.M.  the proposals which approached more than before the first understandings of the negotiation; but they were still well far from the conditions on which S.M.  had not ceased insisting, and to which England had more than ever the right to claim; and the formal rejection of the right requests of Russia, as well as the refusal of the conditions suggested by S.M.  in favor of their others combined, did not leave the king recourse but to order to its minister to finish this discussion and to return to England.

This short and simple exposition of the facts does not have need for comments.  The enemy made the first openings, which brought the negotiation, and S.M.  listened with a sincere desire of peace.  Each proposal that could be foreseen to lead to the even remote prospect of a compromise was broken as much as we preserved the light of hope to see our making a happy outcome.  The requests for S.M.  were constantly just and reasonable; they did not have the aim of satisfying a personal ambition, but to fulfill the duties that are imperiously entrusted to him through the honor of his crown, hiss agreements with his allies and the general interests of Europe.

It is with a heavy heart that S.M.  sees the prolonged evils that are inseparable from war; but the frightening responsibility for the misfortunes which it involves, falls down on its enemies, and S.M.  rests with confidence, for the result of this great quarrel, on the justice of its cause, the resources and the bravery of its people, on the fidelity of its allies, and above all, on the protection and the support of divine Providence.

While contributing to the immense efforts that such a war must necessarily bring, the faithful subjects of S.M.  cannot forget that it goes there from their more dear interests; that the few sacrifices that it asks of them, are not comparable with the shame to yield to the abusive claims of the enemy; who prosperity, the force and the independence of their fatherland are primarily related to the maintenance of the good faith of the national honor, and which by defending the rights and the dignity of the British empire, they defend the most powerful boulevard of the freedom of the world.

Official Papers: The Last  Negotiation between France and England. Declaration of  the British S.M.

The negotiations in which S.M.  was engaged with France, being finished without success, the king judged it suitable to make to its subjects and the whole of Europe, a public declaration of the circumstances that brought a result so distressing for S.M.  We do not have anything more in our heart than the conclusion of a sure and lasting peace.  We deplore the continuation of a war which disturbs the happiness of so many nations, and which, despite all the successes that accompany its armies, is so expensive on its faithful and affectionate subjects.  But it has confidence that there is no more today, either in its States, or in the other parts of Europe, that only one feeling, that of a conviction even more intimate than the re-establishment of general peace is delayed only by the injustice and the ambition of the enemy.

The French Government, not content with the immense acquisitions that it made on the Continent, still perseveres in a system destructive to the independence of all the other nations.  The war continues not to obtain security, but to make conquests;  and the negotiations of peace appear to have another object of only inspiring in the neighboring powers a false security, while France prepared, combined and carried out its continual projects of invasion and aggression.

Its conduct, during the last discussions, offered only too much evidence of this provision. 

The negotiation started with the French Government offering a peace treaty on the basis of its current possessions, which were admitted as items of mutual compensation, which had been attacked without the lightest pretext of hostilities, and one added moreover the insurance to us that the German States of S. M. would be restored. 

Such a proposal appeared with S.M.  to offer an equitable base of negotiations:  it was in consequence received with the understanding that S.M.  would lead the negotiation in liaison with its allies. 

This basis was not followed by their own admission on both sides so that the enemy deviated some, and on points of so high importance, that S.M.  was at once obliged to declare that unless the principle suggested by France itself was not maintained, the open communications between the two governments, were going at the moment to be closed.  This declaration brought, on behalf of France, new protests on the provision where it was to make considerable sacrifices to arrive at peace, if one wanted to continue the negotiations;  and at the same time they raised difficulties on the insufficiency of the authority of the person that S.M.  had charged with making this communications.  Consequently, measures were taken by S.M.  to open a regular negotiation, by ministers duly authorized, in order to ensure itself in a satisfactory and real way, if it were possible to obtain an honorable peace for the king and his allies, and compatible with the general safety of Europe. 

During these intervening matters, a minister, sent by the emperor of Russia and charged with treating for the same object, in liaison with the government of S.M., was brought by the artifices of the enemy to sign a separated treaty, also in contradictory conditions with the honor and the interests of S.M.I.  

Without letting himself to be shaken by this unexpected event, the king continued to treat on the same principles as before.  He rested with a confidence that his experiences well justified, the good faith and the firmness of an ally, with which he had begun the negotiations in concert, and the doubt he had, during all the course of the discussions, assured him their interests, like his, were proper. 

The French Government, on the contrary, acting as if this event was the most significant and most decisive victory, left each day with more invitations and offers which it had to make.  Not only did this change the mutually agreed upon basis of the negotiation with Great Britain, but it violated, on points even more important, all the principles of the good faith towards Russia.  The principal lure offered to its minister, had been the conservation of Germany.  However, before the decision of Russia on this treaty could be known, France had already destroyed the form and the constitution of the Germanic Empire.  It had made fall under its yoke a great portion of the States and provinces of this empire, and not content to run roughshod over its recent pledges, it had, in same the time, excited the Porte Ottomans (Porte Sublime, Ottoman Empire) with measurements subversive of its agreements with Russia. 

Such conduct towards S.M., its allies and all the independent nations, had left little hope of a favorable outcome from the negotiation, so the king’s plenipotentiary required their passports to return to England.  Initially this request was eluded for some time without pretexts or precedence, and then the Government French, by making some material concessions and while giving to understand that, in the course of a later discussion, it could make some moreover trailed day in day until finally one announced in Paris that the emperor of Russia had rejected with indignation the separated treaty, concluded without authorization by his minister. 

In consequence of this significant event, the minister of S.M.  accepted the strongest insurances that France was prepared to make the greatest sacrifices to conclude peace with England, and to return peace in the World. 

It appears however that the goal of these insurances was to engage S.M.  in a separate negotiation, from which its allies would be excluded:  a proposal which had been disallowed by the principles, and that S.M.  could even less agree to at time when the guidance of Russia imposed a new obligation to him not to separate its interests from those of one so faithful ally.  The king constantly refused to lend an ear to these insidious openings; but S.M.  took the most effective means to draw aside all the pretexts of delay, and to accelerate, if it was possible, the happy outcome of the negotiation.  The confidential communications that constantly had been maintained carefully with Russia, reflects S.M.  with specific scope of the conditions to which this power would agree to make peace.  Consequently the English plenipotentiary recently ordered to work with France, with additional authoritative requests, and those of its ally, to settle those articles separately, and to even conclude as a basis for a provisional treaty, of which the effect would take place only after the agreement of Russia. 

France, after some objections, agreed to follow this mode of negotiation.  It was offered to S.M.  the proposals which approached more than before the first understandings of the negotiation; but they were still well far from the conditions on which S.M.  had not ceased insisting, and to which England had more than ever the right to claim; and the formal rejection of the right requests of Russia, as well as the refusal of the conditions suggested by S.M.  in favor of their others combined, did not leave the king recourse but to order to its minister to finish this discussion and to return to England.

This short and simple exposition of the facts does not have need for comments.  The enemy made the first openings, which brought the negotiation, and S.M.  listened with a sincere desire of peace.  Each proposal that could be foreseen to lead to the even remote prospect of a compromise was broken as much as we preserved the light of hope to see our making a happy outcome.  The requests for S.M.  were constantly just and reasonable; they did not have the aim of satisfying a personal ambition, but to fulfill the duties that are imperiously entrusted to him through the honor of his crown, hiss agreements with his allies and the general interests of Europe.

It is with a heavy heart that S.M.  sees the prolonged evils that are inseparable from war; but the frightening responsibility for the misfortunes which it involves, falls down on its enemies, and S.M.  rests with confidence, for the result of this great quarrel, on the justice of its cause, the resources and the bravery of its people, on the fidelity of its allies, and above all, on the protection and the support of divine Providence.

While contributing to the immense efforts that such a war must necessarily bring, the faithful subjects of S.M.  cannot forget that it goes there from their more dear interests; that the few sacrifices that it asks of them, are not comparable with the shame to yield to the abusive claims of the enemy; who prosperity, the force and the independence of their fatherland are primarily related to the maintenance of the good faith of the national honor, and which by defending the rights and the dignity of the British empire, they defend the most powerful boulevard of the freedom of the world.

October 21, 1806.

Official Papers: The Last  Negotiation between France and England. Declaration of  the British S.M.

The negotiations in which S.M.  was engaged with France, being finished without success, the king judged it suitable to make to its subjects and the whole of Europe, a public declaration of the circumstances that brought a result so distressing for S.M.  We do not have anything more in our heart than the conclusion of a sure and lasting peace.  We deplore the continuation of a war which disturbs the happiness of so many nations, and which, despite all the successes that accompany its armies, is so expensive on its faithful and affectionate subjects.  But it has confidence that there is no more today, either in its States, or in the other parts of Europe, that only one feeling, that of a conviction even more intimate than the re-establishment of general peace is delayed only by the injustice and the ambition of the enemy.

The French Government, not content with the immense acquisitions that it made on the Continent, still perseveres in a system destructive to the independence of all the other nations.  The war continues not to obtain security, but to make conquests;  and the negotiations of peace appear to have another object of only inspiring in the neighboring powers a false security, while France prepared, combined and carried out its continual projects of invasion and aggression.

Its conduct, during the last discussions, offered only too much evidence of this provision. 

The negotiation started with the French Government offering a peace treaty on the basis of its current possessions, which were admitted as items of mutual compensation, which had been attacked without the lightest pretext of hostilities, and one added moreover the insurance to us that the German States of S. M. would be restored. 

Such a proposal appeared with S.M.  to offer an equitable base of negotiations:  it was in consequence received with the understanding that S.M.  would lead the negotiation in liaison with its allies. 

This basis was not followed by their own admission on both sides so that the enemy deviated some, and on points of so high importance, that S.M.  was at once obliged to declare that unless the principle suggested by France itself was not maintained, the open communications between the two governments, were going at the moment to be closed.  This declaration brought, on behalf of France, new protests on the provision where it was to make considerable sacrifices to arrive at peace, if one wanted to continue the negotiations;  and at the same time they raised difficulties on the insufficiency of the authority of the person that S.M.  had charged with making this communications.  Consequently, measures were taken by S.M.  to open a regular negotiation, by ministers duly authorized, in order to ensure itself in a satisfactory and real way, if it were possible to obtain an honorable peace for the king and his allies, and compatible with the general safety of Europe. 

During these intervening matters, a minister, sent by the emperor of Russia and charged with treating for the same object, in liaison with the government of S.M., was brought by the artifices of the enemy to sign a separated treaty, also in contradictory conditions with the honor and the interests of S.M.I.  

Without letting himself to be shaken by this unexpected event, the king continued to treat on the same principles as before.  He rested with a confidence that his experiences well justified, the good faith and the firmness of an ally, with which he had begun the negotiations in concert, and the doubt he had, during all the course of the discussions, assured him their interests, like his, were proper. 

The French Government, on the contrary, acting as if this event was the most significant and most decisive victory, left each day with more invitations and offers which it had to make.  Not only did this change the mutually agreed upon basis of the negotiation with Great Britain, but it violated, on points even more important, all the principles of the good faith towards Russia.  The principal lure offered to its minister, had been the conservation of Germany.  However, before the decision of Russia on this treaty could be known, France had already destroyed the form and the constitution of the Germanic Empire.  It had made fall under its yoke a great portion of the States and provinces of this empire, and not content to run roughshod over its recent pledges, it had, in same the time, excited the Porte Ottomans (Porte Sublime, Ottoman Empire) with measurements subversive of its agreements with Russia. 

Such conduct towards S.M., its allies and all the independent nations, had left little hope of a favorable outcome from the negotiation, so the king’s plenipotentiary required their passports to return to England.  Initially this request was eluded for some time without pretexts or precedence, and then the Government French, by making some material concessions and while giving to understand that, in the course of a later discussion, it could make some moreover trailed day in day until finally one announced in Paris that the emperor of Russia had rejected with indignation the separated treaty, concluded without authorization by his minister. 

In consequence of this significant event, the minister of S.M.  accepted the strongest insurances that France was prepared to make the greatest sacrifices to conclude peace with England, and to return peace in the World. 

It appears however that the goal of these insurances was to engage S.M.  in a separate negotiation, from which its allies would be excluded:  a proposal which had been disallowed by the principles, and that S.M.  could even less agree to at time when the guidance of Russia imposed a new obligation to him not to separate its interests from those of one so faithful ally.  The king constantly refused to lend an ear to these insidious openings; but S.M.  took the most effective means to draw aside all the pretexts of delay, and to accelerate, if it was possible, the happy outcome of the negotiation.  The confidential communications that constantly had been maintained carefully with Russia, reflects S.M.  with specific scope of the conditions to which this power would agree to make peace.  Consequently the English plenipotentiary recently ordered to work with France, with additional authoritative requests, and those of its ally, to settle those articles separately, and to even conclude as a basis for a provisional treaty, of which the effect would take place only after the agreement of Russia. 

France, after some objections, agreed to follow this mode of negotiation.  It was offered to S.M.  the proposals which approached more than before the first understandings of the negotiation; but they were still well far from the conditions on which S.M.  had not ceased insisting, and to which England had more than ever the right to claim; and the formal rejection of the right requests of Russia, as well as the refusal of the conditions suggested by S.M.  in favor of their others combined, did not leave the king recourse but to order to its minister to finish this discussion and to return to England.

This short and simple exposition of the facts does not have need for comments.  The enemy made the first openings, which brought the negotiation, and S.M.  listened with a sincere desire of peace.  Each proposal that could be foreseen to lead to the even remote prospect of a compromise was broken as much as we preserved the light of hope to see our making a happy outcome.  The requests for S.M.  were constantly just and reasonable; they did not have the aim of satisfying a personal ambition, but to fulfill the duties that are imperiously entrusted to him through the honor of his crown, hiss agreements with his allies and the general interests of Europe.

It is with a heavy heart that S.M.  sees the prolonged evils that are inseparable from war; but the frightening responsibility for the misfortunes which it involves, falls down on its enemies, and S.M.  rests with confidence, for the result of this great quarrel, on the justice of its cause, the resources and the bravery of its people, on the fidelity of its allies, and above all, on the protection and the support of divine Providence.

While contributing to the immense efforts that such a war must necessarily bring, the faithful subjects of S.M.  cannot forget that it goes there from their more dear interests; that the few sacrifices that it asks of them, are not comparable with the shame to yield to the abusive claims of the enemy; who prosperity, the force and the independence of their fatherland are primarily related to the maintenance of the good faith of the national honor, and which by defending the rights and the dignity of the British empire, they defend the most powerful boulevard of the freedom of the world.

 

 

 

 

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