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new alliance in the spirit of ancient Switzerland (im Geiste der alten Bunde). Such an act was in fact a declaration that the Diet possessed constituent as well as legislative capacity; nor did any opposition to such a character long maintain itself; it was this assembly, reinforced later by the delegates of temporarily recalcitrant Cantons which, known as the Long Assembly, finally produced, under pressure of the Powers, the Swiss federal constitution of August 7, 1815, under which the country lived until the adoption in 1848 of the form of government continued, with various amendments, to the present day. The second article of the federal instrument of 1815 provides for cantonal contingent troops for the maintenance of the neutrality of the country, which had just been, as we shall see in a moment, recognized by the Powers at Vienna.
For the obtainment at Vienna of certain definite aspirations, the Swiss had already made careful preparation when the allied sovereigns met at Basel in December, 1813. Of the delegates from the Diet and various Cantons, the Genevan Pictet de Rochemont was easily the most gifted, and it proved fortunate for his Canton and for Switzerland itself that he found sufficient favor with the Russians to be appointed Secretary-General to the Baron de Stein, becoming in consequence of this a member of the Russian Council of State. This brought him into immediate relation with the various chancelleries when the allied Powers met again at Paris in the following spring. It was not, however, , without a persistent struggle on the part of de Rochemont and his colleagues that Switzerland there obtained an adequate hearing. Nevertheless, when, on May 30, 1814, France concluded identical treaties with Austria, Great Britain, Portugal, Prussia, Russia, and Sweden and Norway (the several treaties being collectively known as the first Peace of Paris), Switzerland was able to obtain in Article I, paragraph 7, the union of Geneva with Switzerland, and in Article VI, a recognition of Swiss independence; while Article II of the separate and secret articles of the Austrian treaty contained the important clause: "France will recognize and guarantee conjointly with the allied Powers and in like manner as they do the political organization which Switzerland will give itself under the auspices of the said Powers and on the bases agreed upon with them.” It is precisely here that
we have the practical documentary foundation of Switzerland's present international position. In addition to this forecast of a neutral guarantee, de Rochemont succeeded in obtaining, in Article IV of the Austrian treaty, the consent of France to a practical neutralization of the great highway then running from Geneva along the westerly side of the lake through French territory to Canton Vaud. It remained to secure at a later date a cession of this territory itself in order to place Geneva in direct territorial affiliation with the remainder of the Swiss country.
The opening of the Congress at Vienna in the following November found various Swiss delegates prepared to press the aims of their several Cantons as well as of the Diet at Zurich. On the part of the Diet the points of importance were: (1) a recognition of Switzerland as an independent state; (2) the assertion of its neutrality and the attainment of an adequate military frontier; (3) the possession as Swiss federal territory of the wide-lying lands of the bishopric of Basel; (4) the addition to Geneva of an adequate territory; (5) the reunion of the city of Constance with Switzerland; (6) the return of the beautiful Val Tellina on the southerly side of the Alps; (7) indemnity for the seizure by Austria and the Grand Duchy of Baden of sundry Swiss ecclesiastical foundations. As events turned out, Switzerland was destined to obtain the majority of these demands, though it failed to secure either Constance or the Val Tellina. Nevertheless, the bishopric of Basel eventually became Swiss, the most part of it going to Canton Bern while smaller portions were assigned to Neuchâtel and Canton Basel itself. The three French-speaking Cantons of Neuchâtel, Geneva, and Valais were united with the Swiss alliance, thus completing the number of twenty-two Cantons as they stand today and affording, from a territorial point of view, a strong military frontier.
On March 20, 1815, the Vienna Congress undertook to formulate in a Declaration the chief points to be conceded to Swiss needs, this Declaration afterwards taking shape as Annex No. 11 of the Final Act of the Congress June 9, 1815. The preamble to the Declaration announces that the Congress,
After having obtained all information possible touching the interests of the different Cantons and having taken into consideration the demands of the Helvetic delegation, declares that as soon as the Swiss Diet shall have acceded in due form to the stipulations set forth in the present document, there shall be prepared a formal statement setting forth the recognition and guarantee on the part of all the Powers of Switzerland's perpetual neutrality within its new frontiers and which statement shall be held to complete arrangements of the Congress as contemplated in the Treaty of Paris of May 30, 1814.
For the moment we pass by the details of this important document, since our attention is more especially engaged with the neutrality feature. On May 27 following, the Swiss Assembly at Zurich declared its formal adhesion to the allied plan:
The Diet accedes in the name of the Swiss Confederation to the declaration of the Powers assembled at the Congress of Vienna under date of the 20th March 1815, and promises that the stipulations contained in the “Transaction" inserted in this Act shall be faithfully and religiously observed.
No. 2. The Diet expresses the eternal gratitude of the Swiss nation towards the high Powers who by the above declaration assigned to them with a boundary far more advantageous its ancient important frontiers; unite three new Cantons to the Confederation; and promise solemnly to acknowledge and guarantee the perpetual neutrality of the Helvetic Body as being necessary to the general interest of Europe. The Diet feels the same sentiments of gratitude for the uniform kindness with which the august Sovereigns have exerted themselves in bringing about a reconciliation of the differences which have arisen between the Cantons.
Accordingly, the Vienna Congress Act of June 9, 1815 (the Vienna Final Act), contained the following stipulation in Article 84:
The Declaration of the 20th March, addressed by the Allied Powers who signed the Treaty of Paris, to the Diet of the Swiss Confederation, and accepted by the Diet through the Act of Adhesion of the 27th May, is confirmed in the whole of its tenor; and the principles established, as also the arrangements agreed upon, in the said declaration shall invariably be maintained.
Thus the principle of a Swiss permanent neutrality received the approval and guarantee of the Powers.
When, in the autumn following the battle of Waterloo, the Powers
once more came together at Paris, a protocol was executed under date of November 3, 1815, by Austria, Great Britain, Prussia, and Russia in order to confirm the dispositions of the Vienna Congress touching Switzerland, and these dispositions with others were made part of the second Treaty of Paris, concluded on the twentieth of the same month; as an annex to these identical treaties there was signed on the same day on the part of Austria, France, Great Britain, Portugal, Russia, and Prussia a declaration of the recognition and guarantee of Swiss perpetual neutrality and the inviolability of its territory:
The accession of Switzerland to the Vienna Declaration on March 20, 1815, on the part of the signatory Powers of the Treaty of Paris having been duly notified to the ministries of the Imperial and Royal courts by the Swiss Act of May 27 following, there remains no obstacle to the making of an act of recognition and guarantee of perpetual neutrality of Switzerland in its new frontiers in conformity with that declaration. ... Accordingly the signatory Powers of the Vienna Declaration hereby set forth in the present act a formal and authentic recognition of Swiss perpetual neutrality and guarantee the integrity and inviolability of its territory within its new_limits as settled not only by the Congress of Vienna but also by the Treaty of Paris of this date and as they are intended to remain in conformity with the protocol of November 3, hereby annexed, which contemplates in favor of Switzerland a fresh addition of territory to Canton Geneva to be taken from Savoy. ... The Powers signatory to the Declaration of March 20 authoritatively recognize by the present act that Swiss neutrality and inviolability and independence of any foreign influence are to be considered as in the true interest of European policy. The Powers further declare that no conclusion unfavorable to Swiss rights as touching its neutrality or the inviolability of its territory can, or should be, drawn from the passage of the allied troops over Swiss soil. . . . The Powers take pleasure in recognizing that Swiss conduct under these circumstances of stress have shown that it knew how to submit to sacrifices in the interest of the general welfare and in the maintenance of a cause defended by all the Powers of Europe; and that, finally, Switzerland was worthy to obtain the advantages now assured to it as well by the arrangements of the Congress of Vienna as by the Treaty of Paris and by this present Act to which every European Power is invited to accede.
Thus Switzerland was clothed with a distinctive international personality and assumed a place amid other nations of equal independence, though supported by solemn guarantees. Such a position,
however, presents, in its development, many features of importance. An account of these must be reserved for another occasion.
GORDON E. SHERMAN.
· Authorities: Recueil International des Traités du XIXe siècle (Descamps et Renault), tome premier, 1801-1825; La Suisse, Étude Géographique Démographique, Politique, économique et Historique; Geschichte der schweizerischen Politik (Professor Schollenberger, of Zurich); Au Congrès de Vienne, Journal de JeanGabriel Eynard (ed. by Edouard Chapuisat); La Suisse au Dix-Neuvième Siècle (ed. by Professor Seippel of Zurich); Geschichte und Texte der Bundesverfassungen der schweizerischen Eidgenossenschaft (S. Kaiser u. J. Stricker); Die Bundesverfassungen der schweizerischen Eidgenossenschaft (Professor Hilty); La Suisse et les Traités de 1815 (É. Chapuisat); Notre Neutralité, (Lucien Cramer); La Vérité sur la Neutralité de la Savoie du Nord (F. Marullaz); La Vérité sur la Zone Franche de la Haute-Savoie (F. Marullaz); Les Zones Franche de la Haute-Savoie et du Pays de Gex (Henri de Grix); Das Bundesstaatsrecht der Schweiz (Professor Schollenberger); Les Conséquences Juridiques de la Guerre en Suisse (E. Kuhn, of Zurich; éd. Française par H. Bonnard et P. Secretan); Die Neutralität der Schweiz (Professor Hilty).