‘Arrestez et pillez contre toute sorte de droit’: Trade and the War of the Quadruple Alliance (1718–1720)

Frederik Dhondt

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.12775/LEGATIO.2017.04

Abstract


The War of the Quadruple Alliance (1718–1720) was a conflict between Spain and the other major European powers over the balance of power in Italy. France and Britain jointly intervened on the side of the attacked party, Emperor Charles VI. In February 1720, the conflict was resolved when Philip V of Spain finally adhered to the Treaty of London (2 August 1718). The decision to go to war was contentious at the French court. For the benefit of public opinion, Philip, duke of Orléans and Regent of France, had to wage war against the Spanish Prime Minister, Cardinal Giulio Alberoni, rather than against the Sun King’s grandson, Philip V. Moreover, whereas French and British diplomats found consensus as regards maintaining the principles of the Peace of Utrecht (11 April 1713), they remained commercial rivals. This article lifts a tip of the veil covering the complex trade relations during the conflict. Spain tried to placate and reassure French merchants, and conversely to punish their British counterparts. The British fleet patrolled the Mediterranean, searching French vessels as well as those of neutral states. The Emperor, though allied to France and Britain, could not prevent Neapolitan corsairs from preying on their trade. Moreover, French ships illegally furnished the Spanish army. Finally, France and Britain hoped to quell the abuse of neutral powers in the conflict (Tuscany, Genoa, Venice) by imposing upon them a duty to chase Spanish privateers from their harbours. The complaints of French traders, as indicated by the consuls to the Conseil de la Marine and the Regent himself at the apex of the French government, reveal pleas borne out of frustration, as well as appeals to either the law of nations or consular protection to shield merchants from assaults and abuses. When war was declared, inimical, friendly or allied relations in high politics seemed almost irrelevant. The military conflict generated uncertainty and damaged the reputation of the French flag. Diplomatic pressure on the neutral powers was seen as being more effective than reliance on seemingly corrupt or biased local jurisdictions. The Regent’s management of the conflict – in close collaboration with Britain, despite all the difficulties on the ground – is all the more remarkable.

Keywords


Law of nations; legal history; commerce; War of the Quadruple Alliance; Regency; Italy

Full Text:

PDF

References


Archival Sources

Paris, Archives Nationales

Marine, B1

Printed Primary Sources

Bynkershoek, Cornelius van, Quaestionum iuris publici libri duo, trans. by Tenney Franck (Washington: Carnegie Institute, 1930 [1737])

Child, Josiah, Discourse of Trade, Wherein is Recommended Several weighty Points relating to Companies of Merchants, the Act of Navigation, Naturalization of Strangers, and our Woollen Manufactures, the Balance of Trade And the Nature of Plantations, and their Consequences, in Relation to the Kingdom, are Seriously Discusses (London: Sowle, 1718)

Considérations sur la guerre d’Italie ([n.p.]: [n. pub.], [1718])

Galluzzi, Riguccio, Histoire du grand duché de Toscane, sous le gouvernement des Médicis, traduite de l’italien, 3 vols (Paris: Hôtel Serpente, 1782–1784)

Massuet, Pierre, Histoire de la guerre présente contenant tout ce qui s’est passé de plus important en Italie, sur le Rhin, en Pologne & dans la plupart des Cours de l’Europe (Amsterdam: Brunel & Wetstein, 1735)

Mercure historique et politique, Contenant l’état présent de l’Europe, ce qui se passe dans toutes les Cours, l’Intérêt des Princes, leurs Brigues, & généralement tout ce qu’il y a de curieux pour le Mois de Janvier 1719 (La Haye: Les Frères Van Dole, 1719)

Mont de Carels-Kroon, Jean du, La vérité du fait, du droit, et de l’intérêt de tout ce qui concerne le commerce des Indes, etabli aux Païs Bas Autrichiens par octroi de sa Majesté Impér. et Catholique ([n.p.]: [n. pub.], 1726)

———, ed., Corps Universel Diplomatique du Droit des Gens (CUD), 8 vols (The Hague: Adrien Moetjens, 1726–1731)

Ordonnance de la Marine du mois d’Aoust 1681: Commentée & Conférée sur les anciennes Ordonnances, le Droit Romain, & les nouveaux Réglemens (Paris: Osmont), 1714

Tosini, Pietro, La liberté de l’Italie demontrée à ses princes et à ses peuples, traduite de l’italien (Amsterdam: Steenhouwer & Uytwerf, 1718)

Vayrac, Jean de, État présent de l’Espagne, où l’on voit une géographie historique du Pays (Amsterdam: Steenhouwer & Uytwerp, 1719)

Secondary Works

Aalbers, Johan, ‘Holland’s Financial Problems (1713–1733) and the wars against Louis XIV’, in Britain and the Netherlands, ed. by A.C. Duke and C.A. Tamse (The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff, 1977), pp. 79–112

Ahn, Doowhan, ‘The Anglo-French Treaty of Commerce of 1713: Tory Trade Politicsm and the Question of Dutch Decline’, History of European Ideas, 36 (2012), 167–80

Alcaide Fernandez, Joaquin, ‘Hostes Humani Generis: Pirates, Slavers, and other Criminals’, in The Oxford Handbook of the History of International Law, ed. by Bardo Fassbender and Anne Peters (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012), pp. 120–44

Alimento, Antonella, ‘Commercial Treaties and the Harmonisation of National Interests: The Anglo-French Case (1667–1713)’, in War, Trade and Neutrality: Europe and the Mediterranean in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries, ed. by Antonella Alimento (Milan: FrancoAngeli, 2011), pp. 107–28

Anderson, Gary M. and Adam Gifford jr., ‘Privateering and the Private Production of Naval power’, Cato Journal, 11 (1991–1992), 99–122

Bély, Lucien, Espions et Ambassadeurs au Temps de Louis XIV (Paris: Fayard, 1990)

———, ed., La Présence des Bourbons en Europe, XVIe–XXIe Siècle (Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 2003)

Bérenger, Jean, ‘Le Conflit entre les Habsbourg et les Bourbons (1598–1792)’, Revue d’Histoire Diplomatique, 116 (2002), 192–232

Bourgeoise, Émile, La Diplomatie Secrète au XVIIIe Siècle, Ses Débuts, 3 vols (Paris: Armand Colin, 1909–1910)

Brito Vieira, Mónica, ‘Mare Liberum vs. Mare Clausum: Grotius, Freitas, and Selden’s Debate on Dominion over the Seas’, Journal of the History of Ideas, 64 (2003), 361–77

Bromley, John S., Corsairs and Navies 1660–1770 (London: Hambledon Press, 1987)

Browning, Reed, The War of the Austrian Succession (New York: St Martin’s Griffin, 1995)

Campbell, Peter R., Power and Politics in Old Regime France, 1720–1745 (London: Routledge, 1996)

Caridi, Giuseppe, Carlo III: Un grande Re Riformatore a Napoli e in Spagna (Rome: Salerno, 2014).

Castagnoli, Paolo, Il Cardinale Giulio Alberoni, 3 vols (Piacenza: Collegio Alberoni, 1929)

Chanet, Jean-François and Christian Windler, eds., Les Ressources des Faibles: Neutralités, Sauvegardes, Accommodements en Temps de Guerre (XVIe–XVIIIe Siècle) (Rennes: Presses Universitaires de Rennes, 2009)

Chaussinand-Nogaret, Guy, Le Cardinal Dubois, 1656–1723 ou une Certaine Idée de l’Europe (Paris: Perrin, 2000)

Corvisier, André, ‘Présence de la Guerre au XVIIe Siècle’, in Guerre et Paix dans l’Europe du XVIIe Siècle, ed. by Lucien Bély, Jean Bérenger and André Corvisier, 2 vols (Paris: S.E.D.E.S., 1991), I, pp. 13–27

Crouzet, François, ‘La Rivalité Commerciale Franco-Anglaise dans l’Empire Espagnol, 1713–1789’, Histoire, Économie et Société, 31 (2012), 19–29

Condamine, Pierre de la, Pontcallec: Une Étrange Conspiration au Cœur de la Bretagne ([Mayenne]: Y. Floc’h, 1988).

Davis, Ralph, ‘English Foreign Trade 1700–1774’, Economic History Review, 15 (1962), 285–303

Dhondt, Frederik, ‘From Contract to Treaty: The Legal Transformation of the Spanish Succession, 1659–1713’, Journal of the History of International Law – Revue d’Histoire du Droit International, 13 (2011), 347–75

———, ‘Kardinaal Dubois door Hyacinthe Rigaud (1723): Een Insider’s View op een Bibliotheek van de Macht in de Grand Siècle’, Pro Memorie: Bijdragen tot de Rechtsgeschiedenis der Nederlanden, 16 (2014), 45–54

———, Balance of Power and Norm Hierarchy: Franco-British Diplomacy after the Peace of Utrecht (Leiden: Brill, 2015)

———, ‘Delenda est haec Carthago: The Ostend Company as a Problem of European Great Power Politics (1722–1727)’, Revue Belge de Philologie et d’Histoire/Belgisch Tijdschrift voor Filologie en Geschiedenis, 93 (2015), 397–437

Duchhardt, Heinz and Martin Espenhorst, eds., Utrecht-Rastatt-Baden 1712–1714: Ein europäisches Friedenswerk am Ende des Zeitalters Ludwigs. XIV (Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2013)

Dupilet, Alexandre, La Régence Absolue: Philippe d’Orléans et la Polysynodie (Seyssel: Champ Vallon, 2011)

———, Le Cardinal Dubois: Le Génie Politique de la Régence (Paris: Tallandier, 2015)

Fausta Gallo, Francesca, ‘Una difficile Fedeltà: L’Italia durante la Guerra di Successione Spagnola’, Cheiron, 39–40 (2004), 245–66

Feenstra, Robert, ‘Mare Liberum – Contexte Historique et Concepts Fondamentaux’, in Grotius et l’Ordre Juridique International: Travaux du Colloque Hugo Grotius Genève, 10–11 Novembre 1983, ed. by Alfred Dufour, Peter Haggenmacher and Jiri Toman (Lausanne: Payot, 1985), pp. 37–42

Frey, Marsha and Linda Frey, eds., The Treaties of the War of the Spanish Succession: An Historical and Critical Dictionary (Westport: Greenwood, 1995)

Gaurier, Dominique, Histoire du Droit International (Rennes: Presses Universitaires de Rennes, 2014)

Graham, Aaron, Corruption, Party, and Government in Britain, 1702–1713 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015)

Grüne, Niels and Simona Slanička, eds., Korruption. Historische Annäherungen an eine Grundfigur politischer Kommunikation (Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2010)

Harcourt-Smith, Simon, Cardinal of Spain: The Life and Strange Career of Giulio Alberoni (New York: Knopf, 1955)

Huisman, Michel, La Belgique Commerciale sous l’Empereur Charles VI: La Compagnie d’Ostende: Étude Historique de Politique Commerciale et Coloniale (Bruxelles: Lamertin, 1902)

Kaiser, Wolfgang and Guillaume Calafat, ‘Violence, Protection and Commerce: Corsairing and Ars Piratica in the Early Modern Mediterranean’, in Persistent Piracy: Maritime Violence and State Formation in Global Historical Perspective, ed. by Stefan Amirell and Leos Müller (London: Palgrave, 2014), pp. 69–92.

Kolb, Robert, ‘The Protection of the Individual in Times of War and Peace’, in The Oxford Handbook of the History of International Law, ed. by Bardo Fassbender and Anne Peters (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012), pp. 317–37

Koskenniemi, Martti, ‘International Law and the Emergence of Mercantile Capitalism: Grotius to Smith’, in The Roots of International Law/Les Fondements du Droit International: Liber Amicorum Peter Haggenmacher, ed. by Pierre-Marie Dupuy and Vincent Chetail (Leiden: Brill, 2013), pp. 3–37

León Sanz, Virginia, Carlos VI: El Emperador que no pudo ser Rey de España (Madrid: Aguilar, 2003)

Mattei, Jean Matthieu, Histoire du droit de la guerre, 1700-1819: Introduction à l’histoire du droit international: Avec une biographie des principaux auteurs de la doctrine internationaliste de l’antiquité à nos jours (Aix-en-Provence: Presses Universitaires d’Aix-Marseille, 2006)

McJimsey, Robert R., ‘Shaping the Revolution in Foreign Policy: Parliament and the Press, 1689–1730’, Parliamentary History, 25 (2006), 17–31

McLachlan, Jean O., Trade and Peace with Old Spain 1667–1750 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1940)

McKay, Derek, ‘Bolingbroke, Oxford and the Defence of the Utrecht Settlement in Southern Europe’, English Historical Review, 86 (1971), 264–84

Meyer, Jean, ‘Marine de guerre’, in Dictionnaire de l’Ancien Régime, ed. by Lucien Bély (Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 2006), pp. 802–04

Mongiano, Elisa, ‘Universae Europae Securitas’: I Trattati di Cession della Sardegna a Vittorio Amedeo II di Savoia (Turin: Giappichelli Editore, 1995)

Ozanam, Denise and Didier Ozanam, Les Diplomates Espagnols au XVIIIe Siècle (Madrid/Bordeaux: Casa de Velázquez/Maison des Pays Ibériques, 1998)

Pesendorfer, Franz, Österreich--Grossmacht im Mittelmeer?: Das Königreich Neapel-Sizilien unter Kaiser Karl VI (1707/20–1734/35) (Vienna: Böhlau Verlag, 1998)

Phillimore, Robert, ed., Commentaries upon International Law, 2 vols (London: Butterworth, 1879–1889)

Quazza, Guido, Il Problema Italiano e l’Equilibrio Europeo, 1720–1738 (Turin: Deputazione Subalpina di Storia Patria, 1965)

Reese, Armin, Europäische Hegemonie und France d’outre-mer: Koloniale Fragen in der französischen Aussenpolitik 1700–1763 (Stuttgart: Steiner, 1988)

Salerno, Emanuele, ‘Stare Pactis and Neutrality: Grotius and Pufendorf in the Political Thought of the Early Eighteenth Century Grand Duchy of Tuscany’, in War, Trade and Neutrality: Europe and the Mediterranean in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries, ed. by Antonella Alimento (Milan: FrancoAngeli, 2011), pp. 188–202

Schnakenbourg, Eric, Entre la Guerre et la Paix: Neutralité et Relations Internationales, XVIIe –XVIIIe Siècles (Rennes: Presses Universitaires de Rennes, 2013)

Spagnoletti, Angelantonio, ‘Il Dibattito Politico a Napoli sulla Successione di Spagna’, Cheiron, 39–40 (2004), 267–310

Stapelbroek, Koen, ‘Dutch Decline as a European Phenomenon’, History of European Ideas, 36 (2010), 139–52

———, ‘Trade, Chartered Companies, and Mercantile Associations’, in The Oxford Handbook of the History of International Law, ed. By Bardo Fassbender and Anne Peters (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012), pp. 338–58

———, ‘Between Utrecht and the War of the Austrian Succession: The Dutch Translation of the British Merchant of 1728’, History of European Ideas, 40 (2014), 1026–43

Stapells Johnson, Victoria, Corsairs of Santo Domingo: A Socio-Economic Study, 1718–1779 (unpublished master thesis, University of Ottawa, 1985)

Steiger, Heinhard, ‘Rechtliche Strukturen der europäischen Staatenordnung 1648–1792’, Zeitschrift für ausländisches öffentliches Recht und Völkerrecht, 59 (1999), 609–49

Storrs, Christopher War, diplomacy and the Rise of Savoy, 1690–1720 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999)

———, ‘The Spanish Risorgimento in the Western Mediterranean and Italy 1707–1748’, European History Quarterly, 62 (2012), 555–77

Stücheli, Rolf, Der Friede von Baden (Schweiz) 1714 (Freiburg: Universitätsverlag, 1997)

Sutton, John L., The King’s Honour and the King’s Cardinal: The War of the Polish Succession (Lexington: Kentucky, 1980)

Verosta, Stephan, ‘Droit International et Droit Interne chez Jean Dumont (1666–1727)’, in Mélanges Offerts à Henri Rolin (Paris: Pedone, 1964), pp. 479–87

Vesnitch, Mil. R., ‘Cardinal Alberoni: An Italian Precursor of Pacifism and International Arbitration’, The American Journal of International Law, 8 (1913), 51–82

Vincens, Émile, Histoire de la République de Gènes, 3 vols (Paris: F. Didot, 1842)

Waquet, Jean-Claude, Le grand-duché de Toscane sous les derniers Médicis: Essai sur le système des finances et la stabilité des institutions dans les anciens États italiens (Rome/ Paris: Ecole Française de Rome/de Boccard, 1990)

Whatmore, Richard, ‘‘Neither Masters nor Slaves’: Small States and Empire in the Long Eighteenth Century’, in Lineages of Empire: The Historical Roots of British Imperial Thought, ed. by Duncan Kelly (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009), pp. 53–81

Williams, Basil, Stanhope: A Study in Eighteenth-Century War and Diplomacy (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1932)

Woodfine, Philip, Britannia’s Glories: The Walpole Ministry and the 1739 War with Spain (Woodbridge: Royal Historical Society, 1998)


Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.

Partnerzy platformy czasopism