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point out the objects which may be employed for that purpose: they ought not, nor can occupy themselves upon the application of the principle, 'until the principle itself is recognised. Then only will they (to make use of the very expressions of the deputation) determine what is neceffary with respect to the articles join. ed to the note of the 3d March, in which, in fact, they find some admillible dispositions.
(Signed) TREILHARD and BONNIER. Raftadt, 23d Ventose (15th March). .
Note of the Deputation of the Empire in Answer to the Plenipoten
tiaries' respecting Secularizations. THE depulation of the Empire had believed that the most proper mode of proceeding, and best adapted to accelerate the conclufion of a peace, was to agree previously on every thing necefsary to be determined to fix the future limits between the two nations, before they should proceed to discuss the other articles of the peace. But as the French ministers, in their last note, have declared, that they have already answered the propositions of the deputation, and that they cannot engage in any farther negotiation relative to this object, until the deputation has declared its consent to the mode of indemnification proposed; and that, without this declaration, it is absolutely impoflible that peace should be concluded; but that in the subsequent negotiations, attention will be paid to whatever may be just and conformable to the interest of the two nations: the deputation, to haften these negotiations, and the final conclusion of the treaty, sees itself obliged to consent to the indeinnities demanded, by the mode of secularizations, for the losses which thall be sustained on the left bank of the Rhine ; and to enter into new negotiations on this subject, in such a manner, however, as to proceed in it with all the precautions and reItrictions which are essentially necessary for the maintenance of the Germanic Empire in all its relations; as well as for the establishment and security of the well-being of ihe states, members and subjects of the Empire. But, as in the fixing of each indemnity, it is principally of importance to determine the amount of the losses sustained ; it is expected that the French ministers will return a precise and voluntary answer to the three previous points contained in the note of the 12th of March ; and that they will likewise make no difficulty to declare themselves on the eighteen articles transmitted to them on the 3d of March. The de. putation, therefore, conceiving that it has advanced in every way in its power towards the absolute conclusion of peace, expects that the French government will at length grant the wish it has so often urged in vain, by withdrawing the troops which still occupy, in great numbers, the right bank of the Rhine, and thereby relieving the inhabitants of that country from an oppressive bure
Rastadt, 5th April.
Reply of the Plenipotentiaries to the foregoing Note, THE deputation of the Empire having acknowledged the neceflity of secularization, in order to provide indemnifications for those states which have lost poifefsions on the left bank of the Rhine, and having acceded to the principle of secularization, proceeds in its note of the 16th of Geririnal (April 5), io express a wish, that the ministers plenipotentiary of the French republic would declare themselves relative to the second propofition in the note of the deputation of the 21st of Ventose (March/12), and the eighteen articles annexed to their note of the 13th of Ventore (March 3). It is likewise required that the troops of the republic on the right bank of the Rhine inay be withdrawn. The ministers plenipotentiary wish to declare themselves relative to these several demands. With respect to the last, they repeat what they have already allerted, that the relinquishing of military positions can only be the consequence of a peace finally concluded, and therefore there is as yet no sufficient reason for withdrawing the troops from the other side of the Rhine. With re(peat to the second proposition contained in the note of the 2ift of Ventose (March 12), the ministers plenipotentiary of the French republic answer, that they have already said sufficient to satisfy every reasonable person, as they have declared, that in the further progress of the negotiations they will only listen io what is jaft and agrecable to the common interests of both nations, by which they have declared that such only shall be the demands on their side. Lastly, with respect to the articles annexed to the note of the 13th of Ventose (March 3), the ministers plenipoicntiary of the French republic remark that these articles by no means appear to have been framed with a vicw to accelerate the conclusion of peace. Some of them can never have been objects of serious doubt on the part of the deputation of the Einpire, such as, for example, the security of private property, the free exercise of religious worship according to the regulation of the laws, and oblivion of all opinions that may have been expreffed during the war. Others of these articles, however, are evidently incompatible with the sovereignty of the republic and its constitution. The undersigned can never sufficiently express their surprise that any persons should ever have entertained a doubt of Tome of these articles, or have resolved to require the fulfilment of the others. In the present situation of circumNances, the true mean to hasten the negotiations, is to make
320 exertions for the application of the basis of indemnifications. Probably it would be most conducive to this end, should the deputation of the Empire lay down some general rules to determine the fate of thofe states (des titularies) which are to be abrogated, shat no doubts may remain with respect to the principles of season and prudence which guide this important operation, Rastadt, 19 Germinal (April 8th), the 6th year of the French republic.
Reply of the Deputation of the Empire to the last Note of the French
Ministers. THE deputation of the Empire has observed in its late note, that in order to fix the indemnities, it will especially be necessary to know the quantity of the losses ; that it therefore expected that a precise and deterininate answer would be returned to the second point previously stated in the note of the 12th of March, and that the French ministers would in like manner make no difficulty to declare themselves relative to the eighteen articles transmitted on the 3d of March. The deputation added, in the same note, that it entertained the firmest hope that the French troops would
be withdrawn as soon as possible from the right bank of the · Rhine. • The contents of the note of the French ministers of the date
of the 19th Germinal (8th April), by no means corresponded with these just expectations; for with respect to the withdrawing of the French troops, it was stated, that no sufficient motive for it could exist before the absolute conclusion of peace. As to the fecond previous point, it was only explained in a manner which could not be entirely satisfactory, by declaring indeterminately, that it must be understood from preceding declarations, that only such deinands as might be accepted would be made on the part of France. With respect to the eighteen articles transmitted on the 3d of March, the French ministers remark, that some of them can admit of no doubt ; and affert, that others are entirely incumpatible with the sovereignty and constitution of the republic, without making any mention of the rest. They have concluded by the proposal to Jabour for the application of the basis of indemnities, and previously to lay down some general rules to fix the fate of those which may be suppressed. · The deputation of the Empire perfe&ly recognises the just con. fiderations which may have induced the French ministers to make the latter proposition: and it is a satisfaction to it, that, relative 10 this particular, its obligations entirely accord with the desires of the French republic. The deputation is, however, firmly
persuaded persuaded that it is impossible to proceed efficaciously to establish the principles on which the indemnities ought to be founded, until a precise and determinate knowledge shall be obtained of the state of things, and all circumstances. But this knowledge cannot be acquired till by the adjustment of the eighteen articles above mentioned, the whole of the loss, the modifications under which the cessions must take place, and the fate of the inhabitants of the provinces beyond the Rhine, shall have been agreed on in concert; the deputation having only consented to sacrifices so great and sensible to Germany, in the full expectation that the three previous points contained in the note of the 11th of March would be acceded to. The deputation of the Empire therefore believes it conformable to its important duties to inlift on the adherence to its former propositions. It therefore again repeats the expectation it has, that the French ministers plenipotentiary shall answer in a precise and determinate manner to the second previous point of the note of the uth of March; that they shall explain them. selves relative to each of the eighteen articles before mentioned; and that they shall without delay take the necessary measures for withdrawing the French troops from the right bank of the Rhine, where the different countries are so much exhausted as to be in. capable of any longer supporting the burden.
Rajtadt, April 18th, 1798. r
Answer of the French Minifiers to the Note of the Deputation of the
Empire of the 18th April. THE cellion of the left bank of the Rhine, and the acceptance of the principle of secularization, in order to provide indemnifications, leave now nothing more to be done, but to examine in what manner these two formally acknowledged principles may be carried into effect. The deputation of the Empire has very juftly femnarked, that, in order to adjust the measure of the indemnifications, it will be proper first to ascertain the extent of the losses. It has therefore exprelled a wish for an explanation relative to this point, and likewise to all other demands which it may be intended to make. The demands of the ministers plenipotentiary of the French republic are simple, and founded on the common advantage of both nations. It is, in fact, sufficient merely to state them, to render their propriety evident. The deputation will find the present note a sufficient answer to almost all the questions contained in its former communications. The navigation of the Rhine shall be alike free to both nations; but no others can participate in it, except by their consent, and under such conditions as they shall choose to require. The ways on the side of that river shall be maintained by the inhabitants of the respective banks, VOL. VII.
eason, the navigatis of the oth natio
and no works undertaken on either side which may be to the detriment of the other. The transits on both sides thall be free, and all tolls shall be abolished. Commodities thall only be subject id the tolls which are paid on their being shipped, which, however, on the one bank, shall not exceed those paid on the other. The islands of the Rhine shall belong to the French republic, The infinite advantages that must result from a free navigation give reason to hope that the deputation will find it no less proper to render the navigation of the rivers which flow into the Rhine, and the navigations of the great rivers of Germany, such as the Danube, likewise free to both nations. In consequence of these ftipulations, the French republic will retain noihing on the right bank of the Rhine, except the fort of Kehl, and its territory. It will easily be perceived that the republic does not wish to retain poffefsion of these for the sake of aggrandizemeni, but for its own security and tranquillity, and to prevent every occasion of a rupture. From a reason of similar urgency, the demolition of the fortress is required, the existence of which is in some measure incompatible with the existence of Coblentz. It is not necessary here to mention the fort of Caflel and its appurtenances, as this fort can only be considered as a part of the fortifications of Mentzy and consequently cannot be separated from it. Lastly, the republic requires the commercial bridge between the two Brisacs shall be restored ; and that a tract of land, fifty acres in extent, opposite the old bridge at Huninguen, shall be ceded, with the road necessary to pass to it. All the rest of the countries on the right bank of the Rhine shall be evacuated by the French troops, iminediately after the conclusion and ratification of the treaty of peace.
• It now only remains to point out those possessions on the left bank of the Rhine, which are to be indemnified from the right bank. The ministers plenipotentiary of the French republic think it cannot be necessary to declare themselves more explicitly on this head; as it cannot escape the deputation, that whatever appertained to the princes or states of the Empire, or knights of the Teutonic order, by a necessary consequence, and according to the principles generally acknowledged, must be transferred to the right bank of the Rhine. The debts likewise with which these objects or possessions were encumbered, must be transferred to the poffeffions applied as indemnifications. It is also to be un. derstood that the Empire renounces all kind of pretensions, of whatever nature they inay be, to the ceded possessions ; and that all titles derived from them shall entirely cease. The same senunciation shall likewise take place with respe&t to all pretensions on the territory of the republics in alliance with the French republic.' The deputation will perceive, that the articles here of. fered are the only ones which can produce that secure order of things, and that durable peace, which inust be the with of both