The Grand Expedition: The British Invasion of Holland in 1809by Gordon C. Gond

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<ul><li><p>The Grand Expedition: The British Invasion of Holland in 1809 by Gordon C. GondReview by: Charles R. MiddletonThe American Historical Review, Vol. 85, No. 1 (Feb., 1980), pp. 124-125Published by: Oxford University Press on behalf of the American Historical AssociationStable URL: .Accessed: 28/06/2014 18:53</p><p>Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of the Terms &amp; Conditions of Use, available at .</p><p> .JSTOR is a not-for-profit service that helps scholars, researchers, and students discover, use, and build upon a wide range ofcontent in a trusted digital archive. We use information technology and tools to increase productivity and facilitate new formsof scholarship. For more information about JSTOR, please contact</p><p> .</p><p>Oxford University Press and American Historical Association are collaborating with JSTOR to digitize,preserve and extend access to The American Historical Review.</p><p> </p><p>This content downloaded from on Sat, 28 Jun 2014 18:53:02 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions</p><p></p></li><li><p>124 Reviews of Books </p><p>sans were prompted by a depressed economy to form working-class groups, thereby setting a pattern for future urban organizations. </p><p>Agitation took various shapes; protests were sys- tematized, old or new tracts were printed, and meetings were frequent. The government viewed all of this activity, even on the part of a small minority, as seditious. Arrests, often followed by trials, were made on the most fragile of pretexts. The court ac- tions of 1794 are vividly described here. More valu- able, if less dramatic, is the distinction spelt out be- tween followers of Paine and other radicals. Before 1800 few were, like the author of Common Sense, gen- uine republicans. Beginning as proponents of reli- gious liberty and a reformed franchise that should elect a Parliament less adverse to change, critics of other aspects of the establishment-the landholding system, the inequality of wealth and opportunity- became increasingly vocal, if not numerous, and eventually bequeathed fruitful traditions to nine- teenth-century propagandists. Significantly, acts absolutely prohibiting all workers' combinations were passed in 1799 and 1800. Their repeal repre- sented the first major if delayed victory for radical- ism. </p><p>All students of English politics in the age of the French Revolution will find this splendid and origi- nal volume invaluable. Even the overlong, repeti- tious, and irrationally arranged bibliography should not deter either specialist or general reader. </p><p>CAROLINE ROBBINS </p><p>Rosemont, Pennsylvania </p><p>MICHAEI, W. MCCAHILL. Order and Equipoise: The Peerage and the House of Lords, 1783-1806. (Royal Historical Society Studies in History Series, number 11.) Lon- don: The Society. 1978. Pp. x, 256. $20.35. </p><p>Tocqueville liked to think of the English nobility as enlightened and intelligent. Michael W. McCahill shares that belief. He is not, to be sure, prepared to countenance all of the political foibles of the titled of the eighteenth century. He finds the peers bored with legislative responsibilities, inept at debate, and inordinately dependent for direction upon the newly minted brethren among them. But these dis- abilities, severe as they may seem, did not in McCahill's judgment prevent the nobility from playing a central and useful role in the political life of Great Britain: the peers were the great con- servators or, to use McCahill's terms, the defenders of "order and equipoise." </p><p>McCahill's book is a study of the peerage in the age of the younger Pitt. Neither conceptually nor substantively does it break new ground. The author devotes chapters to such topics as the constitutional understanding of the peers; their service as legisla- </p><p>tors; their role in the great political shufflings of 1783-84, 1801, and 1804; and the nature of their political influence. His structural categories are as old as Namier: the peers of the realm are divided into king's friends, politicians, and independents. His major conclusions are equally unsurprising. Peers exercised wide political power by virtue of their landed wealth and their control of parlia- mentary boroughs. They were much like lobbyists in twentieth-century America, springing to action to protect specific, often local, interests. They justi- fied these actions by reference to the need to defend the balanced constitution and the welfare of the community. Within the peerage the lawyers, the bishops, and the militia officers exercised pre- ponderant influence. And whenever the peerage acted collectively as the House of Lords, it tended to submit to the authority of the few able men of af- fairs to be found in its ranks. In sum, McCahill sim- ply confirms-though sometimes with arresting force-conclusions already widely accepted. </p><p>If the reader is disappointed at the tameness of these conclusions, she or he will be even more dis- mayed at some other aspects of the work. The open- ing suggestion that those historians are wrong who see the House of Lords as subservient to the crown is contradicted on almost every page: the author virtually admits as much when he tries to elevate the peers' unfailing readiness to support the mon- arch to the status of a disinterested principle. A sim- ilar discrepancy between conclusions and evidence arises when McCahill asserts that "the house of lords was not, during these years, the scourge of re- formers" (p. 62). The reader's immediate doubts about that startling claim are not diminished when McCahill, seeking to justify it, cites as telling evi- dence such peripheral measures as regulations for hawkers and peddlers. </p><p>McCahill's work contains several useful appen- dixes. For this reason, among others, students of the era will wish to consult it. But since the book nei- ther justifies the Tocquevillian sensibility of its au- thor nor alters the accepted view of the peerage in Pitt's day, the rewards will be fewer than readers would wish. </p><p>REED BROWNING </p><p>Kenyon College </p><p>CORDX)N C. BONI). The Grand Expedition: The British In- vasion of Holland in 1809. Athens: University of Geor- gia Press. 1979. Pp. viii, 232. $17.00. </p><p>This monograph deals with the Walcheren expedi- tion of 1809. It is already well known that this oper- ation was a fiasco. It was conceived as an effort to destroy French naval forces and dockyards in the Scheldt River and to relieve French military pres- </p><p>This content downloaded from on Sat, 28 Jun 2014 18:53:02 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions</p><p></p></li><li><p>Modem Europe 125 </p><p>sure on Britain's Austrian ally. What was required for success was imaginative and bold leadership. Alas, instead of Wellington and Nelson there were only Chatham and Strachan. These officers share responsibility for failure with the government at home. Portland's ministry was singularly inept in devising a workable strategy; they also failed to re- alize that the expedition was headed toward dis- taster no sooner than it arrived off Zeeland. It col- lapsed amidst mutual recrimination between commanders, the dissolution of the government, and the ravages of diseases that incredibly incapaci- tated nearly half of some important divisions. </p><p>Gordon C. Bond has built his story around care- ful reading of both French and British sources. His strength lies in reconstructing the course of events. The book's merit is that it deals in great detail with all aspects of the invasion as it unfolded. The reader sees what each protagonist did. Though hardly rev- olutionary, this is useful work. </p><p>Yet there are questions that remain unanswered. Clearly, Bond is more familiar with French than British sources, an unfortunate circumstance given his focus. He fails to understand the conflict be- tween Castlereagh and Canning or at least does not develop it fully in the context of the invasion. The chapter on the parliamentary inquiry into the fail- ure is uninspired. It largely recapitulates the debate from public documents. What really transpired be- hind the scenes in light of ministerial changes? Does one explain the consistent government majority (in a full house by contemporary standards, a sure in- dication of the importance of the issue) solely on the merits of its case? Surely these are considerations of greater import than the movements of troops in Holland. </p><p>This, then, is traditional military and diplomatic history. London and Paris do things rather than British and French leaders. Broader questions such as the problems posed by combined military and naval operations are set aside. The result is an inter- esting but narrowly defined book of greater utility to the military specialist than to those who hope to find interpretations of larger issues. Some stylistic infelicities and curious references (such as calling the Treasury the "treasury office") contrast sharply with excellent maps. </p><p>CHARLES R. MIDDILETON </p><p>University of Colorado, Boulder </p><p>PETER ALLEN. The Cambridge Apostles: The Early Years. New York: Cambridge University Press. 1978. Pp. x, 266. $29.50. </p><p>Throughout the nineteenth century, student so- cieties, especially debating clubs, served as an alter- </p><p>native system of education at Oxford and Cam- bridge. The rigidity of the formal curriculum, its exclusion of contemporary and controversial issues, and the university authorities' uncritical belief in the paramount value of examinations and com- petition created the vacuum that these clubs filled. Controlled by students, they tended to represent in- terests and values antithetical to the official system. Perhaps the most famous of these clubs was the Cambridge Conversazione Society, popularly known as the Apostles. The society is best known as the Cambridge origin of the Bloomsbury group, but its earlier history also included an impressive array of Cambridge intellectuals, from Frederick Denison Maurice, John Sterling, and Alfred Tennyson in the 1830s to Henry Sidgwick, Bertrand Russell, and G. E. Moore in the late nineteenth and early twen- tieth centuries. </p><p>Peter Allen argues in this new book that the so- ciety has been characterized by an enduring tradi- tion of intellectual liberalism. The "Apostolic spirit" included a belief in unrestricted debate and in personal friendship unaffected by doctrinal dif- ferences, although it also contained a strong ten- dency to view with disdain all persons outside the clique. The Cambridge Apostles traces in detail these tendencies in the society from its inception in 1828 through the 1830s. </p><p>The real founder of the "Apostolic spirit" was F. D. Maurice, and Allen relates his abhorrence of rigid ideologies to the bizarre religious extrava- gences of his family, buffeted between a muddled Unitarian father and hysterical Calvinist sisters. In reaction, Maurice developed a Broad Church theol- ogy that emphasized the importance of unity and sympathy and rejected sectarian narrowness. Allen argues that the liberal spirit of Maurice's thought pervaded the society and that this spirit connected his "Apostolic theology" to Henry Sidgwick's faith in "social science" and to the estheticism of Blooms- bury. </p><p>The Cambridge Apostles raises a troubling question: how convincing is Allen's conception of an "Apos- tolic spirit" that has endured throughout the one- hundred-and-fifty-year history of the society? Liber- alism means very little when it is stretched to cover so many different intellectual movements over so long a period of time. Often it seems that Allen is either straining to make connections or merely chronicling the disparate careers and activities of a group of college friends. </p><p>Nonetheless, it is clear that the society was the most important part of many Apostles' Cambridge education. It created the personal friendships and intellectual contacts that were to last a lifetime. The society was also of considerable practical value in furthering the careers of many Apostles by bringing promising young men to the notice of more estab- </p><p>This content downloaded from on Sat, 28 Jun 2014 18:53:02 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions</p><p></p><p>Article Contentsp. 124p. 125</p><p>Issue Table of ContentsThe American Historical Review, Vol. 85, No. 1 (Feb., 1980), pp. i-x+1-285+1a-49aFront Matter [pp. i-x]Mirror for Americans: A Century of Reconstruction History [pp. 1-14]From the Land of Canaan to the Land of Guinea: The Strange Odyssey of the "Sons of Ham" [pp. 15-43]Time, Space, and the Evolution of Afro-American Society on British Mainland North America [pp. 44-78]Reviews of BooksGeneralReview: untitled [pp. 79-80]Review: untitled [p. 80]Review: untitled [p. 81]Review: untitled [pp. 81-83]Review: untitled [pp. 83-84]Review: untitled [pp. 84-85]Review: untitled [pp. 85-86]Review: untitled [p. 86]Review: untitled [pp. 86-87]Review: untitled [pp. 87-88]Review: untitled [p. 88]Review: untitled [p. 89]Review: untitled [pp. 89-90]Review: untitled [pp. 90-91]Review: untitled [p. 91]Review: untitled [pp. 91-92]Review: untitled [pp. 92-93]Review: untitled [p. 93]Review: untitled [pp. 93-94]</p><p>AncientReview: untitled [pp. 94-95]Review: untitled [p. 95]Review: untitled [p. 96]Review: untitled [pp. 96-97]Review: untitled [pp. 97-98]</p><p>MedievalReview: untitled [p. 98]Review: untitled [pp. 98-99]Review: untitled [pp. 99-100]Review: untitled [pp. 100-101]Review: untitled [p. 101]Review: untitled [pp. 101-102]Review: untitled [pp. 102-103]Review: untitled [p. 103]Review: untitled [pp. 103-104]Review: untitled [pp. 104-105]Review: untitled [p. 105]Review: untitled [pp. 105-106]Review: untitled [pp. 106-107]Review: untitled [p. 107]Review: untitled [pp. 107-108]Review: untitled [pp. 108-109]Review: untitled [pp. 109-110]Review: untitled [p. 110]</p><p>Modern EuropeReview: untitled [pp. 110-111]Review: untitled [pp. 111-112]Review: untitled [pp. 112-113]Review: untitled [p. 113]Review: untitled [pp. 113-114]Review: untitled [pp. 114-115]Review: untitled [p. 115]Review: untitled [pp. 115-116]Review: untitled [pp. 116-117]Review: untitled [p. 117]Review: untitled [pp. 117-118]Review: untitled [pp. 118-119]Review: untitled [p. 119]Review: untitled [pp. 119-121]Review: untitled [p. 121]Review: untitled [pp. 121-122]Review: untitled [p. 122]Review: untitled [pp. 122-123]Review: untitled [pp. 123-124]Review: untitled [p. 124]Review: untitled [pp. 124-125]Review: untitled [pp. 125-126]Review: untitled [p. 126]Review: untitled [pp. 126-127]Review: untitled [pp. 127-128]Review: untitled [pp. 128-129]Review: untitled [p. 129]Review: untitled [pp. 129-130]Review:...</p></li></ul>