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V2 the injunction been disregarded. To besiege Fort Edward was impossible, as Montcalm had no means of transporting cannon thither; and to attack Webb without them was a risk which he had not the rashness to incur.The monarchical administration of France, at the height of its power and at the moment of its supreme triumph, stretched an arm across the Atlantic and grasped the North American continent. This volume attempts to show by what methods it strove to make good its hold, why it achieved a certain kind of success, and why it failed at last. The political system which has fallen, and the antagonistic system which has prevailed, seem, at first sight, to offer nothing but contrasts; yet out of the tomb of Canadian absolutism come voices not without suggestion even to us. Extremes meet, and Autocracy and Democracy often touch hands, at least in their vices.
* Marie de lIncarnation, Lettre, Sept., 1661. La Jonquire au Ministre, 9 Oct. 1749. See Appendix B.
 Printed by Sargent, in his excellent monograph of Braddock's Expedition.
Just before the arrival of the six hundred allies, Dubuisson, whose orders were to keep the peace, if he could, among the western tribes, had sent Vincennes to the Huron village with a proposal that they should spare the lives of the Outagamies and Mascoutins, and rest content with driving them away; to which the Hurons returned a fierce and haughty refusal. There was danger that, if vexed or thwarted, the rabble of excited savages now gathered before the fort might turn from friends into enemies, and in some burst of wild caprice lift parricidal tomahawks against their French fathers. Dubuisson saw no choice but to humor them, put himself at their head, aid them in their vengeance, and even set them on. Therefore, when they called out for admittance,[Pg 285] he did not venture to refuse it, but threw open the gate.
Now, as in all their former wars, a great part of their suffering was due to the Mohawks. The Jesuits had spared no pains to convert them, thus changing them from enemies to friends; and their efforts had so far succeeded that the mission colony of Saut St. Louis contained a numerous population of Mohawk Christians.  The place was well fortified; and troops were usually stationed here, partly to defend the converts and partly to ensure their fidelity. They had sometimes done excellent service for the French; but many of them still remembered their old homes on the Mohawk, and their old ties of fellowship and kindred. Their heathen countrymen were jealous of their secession, and spared no pains to reclaim them. Sometimes they tried intrigue, and sometimes force. On one occasion, joined by the Oneidas and Onondagas, they appeared before the palisades of St. Louis, to the 310 number of more than four hundred warriors; but, finding the bastions manned and the gates shut, they withdrew discomfited. It was of great importance to the French to sunder them from their heathen relatives so completely that reconciliation would be impossible, and it was largely to this end that a grand expedition was prepared against the Mohawk towns.
 Loudon to Pitt, 30 May, 1757. He had not learned Pitt's resignation. Lamberville to La Barre, 28 Aug., 1684, in N. Y. Col. Docs., IX. 257.