Political and Economic Problems
Political and Economic Problems of Maccabaeus
The Maccabeus in the early and middle 1700’s was a centre for war and inconceivable lack of integrity from the leaders and the civil public that greatly monitored every movement of their leaders. During the era of Handel, there was war and a lot of unnecessary spending from the nation’s leaders. This greatly incensed the people who would write many things from letters to leaders to articles to friends showing their lack of contentment with the status quo. This paper looks at the problems that Handel faced politically and economically due to the situation he was in then and the composition he had in terms of assistants and their contribution to his woes.
In his advertisement in the dailies in the month of January 1741, Handel expresses the need to increase the revenue of Maccabeus. He starts by imputing that he highly regards the noble rulers of that country. This shows respect and admiration to the political environment of the nation. He showers great praise to the English language which he says is the best spoken language and that greatly expresses the deep sentiments of any music. This is depictive of the manner of information and request that he is about to show. It was also a depiction of the respect bestowed upon the leaders of the nation by the people. Handel also considers himself ignorant before laying his needs to the leadership of the nation. This is a reflection of the kind of revere that was shown to the human leadership of the nation. In the advertisement it is visibly clear that there is an economic situation in the nation when handles says his labors and hard work are ineffectual if they do not benefit him. This shows that there was an underpayment of labor in the country with people struggling and left with little disposable income to enjoy life as it was expected.
Therefore Handel was just a representation of the majority of people who shared similar sentiments. There was also the subscription to the nation’s wealth sources that was. In as much as he was thanking them for their continued subscription it was evident that it was becoming too costly to have all those people subscribed. Hence there was the need to trim the number to reduce the financial impact it was having on the nation. There is also the issue of entertainment that Handel found a bit intriguing and complex. This was having a detrimental impact on the nation’s wealth. There in this advertisement he clearly suggests that with the permission of his noble men he be allowed to trim that money that was been directed to that entertainment to enhance the financial situation in the nation. He laments the loss of public favor that was in him, but continues to say that for the benefit of the nation he be allowed to continue with the plan to have that cut the expenses that were bedeviling the nation. Though this was going to have a direct impact to the leaders alike he says it was best for the nation in that advertisement. It is also evident that the tone of the whole advertisement was remorseful and full of a long cry of a nation that was in turmoil economic wise but whose leaders from the political arena were highly respected to a point where one would confuse that for fear. This respect that was bordering on fear was meant to curtail any opposition to the leadership of the nation so as to make the status quo to remain.
The archbishop of York wrote a number of letters to the noble men of the nation explaining his disappointment at the matters at hand and the state of the nation. In the first letter on October 16, the archbishop goes political and talks of the state of affairs at Berwick and Newcastle. His is a sentiment that there is no greater way to be happy the assurance that those two places are safe and happy. He further talks of the advice given them and chances upon the nature of division of army required and the manner in which this should be done saying three or four groups will be adequate. In this particular letter there is little discussion on matters economy noting that there was need to have resilience until the arrival of relief that was the worst of expectations and the need to give the king more time hence the secession of harvest time which was anticipated to bring more need for relief.
Another letter was posted three days later and was full of complaints of the disappearance of the gentlemen that were going for war but never returned. Also there was completion in preparation in terms of training of a number of army men and they hadn’t been dispatched and were one of the areas that the archbishop was trying to address. This shows that there was great need of finance to enable that nation to have equipments meant for the use by the men. There was also great sentiment that was been directed to the assistants of the lordship in his service provision.
The archbishop even wanted to know whether the ministers were asleep. This shows there were cracks in the political set up that wanted to be filled and but the lordship was not seeing that due to been surrounded by sycophants whose main need was material gain at the greater expense of the nation and the people. The enemies of the nation such as Scotland were another item that was addressed by the letter. The bishop noted there was great anxiety from the people with rumors that army of Scotland was moving towards the south. This he notes was disgrace to the nation and the king. Therefore in mock version he tried to bring about the attention of the lordship by saying that the army was not supposed to train with broom sticks.
These two shows just how dire the situation was in economically and in the political arena. There was no money to buy them equipments of war and the army was using disgraceful tools for training in preparation for war that was bound to be massive and the army was requiring more. This increased the anxiety of the public who felt humiliated by the state of events. In the subsequent letters to the lordship that were sent the next month, there was great stressing on the part of clamor for war that was greatly eminent and that was threatening the livelihood of people in the nation. There was great propaganda as to where the enemy was most likely going to attack and the army was not in any way able to cover all the areas due to their relatively small number.
On 24th of October, 1745 the earl of Shaftesbury wrote a letter to his cousin James Harris. Though it was a short letter it laid the matter that was the bone of contention on the ground as it highlighted the problems that Handel was dealing with. All these at the time were bordering on political and economy of the nation. Another letter that was written by Powney also focuses on Handel and the problems he was contending with at the time in 1745. It is figurative in its nature and highly gives us an insight of what was the major theme. A scepter was meant to show that there was ghostly emerging thing that wanted to consume the nation: war. The letter seems to have protestation as regards the helpers of the king and this is depicted as there is an applause that is been described to show laughter and happiness while there was many people not knowing what will happen next.
Charles Jennens wrote a very deeply controversial letter to a friend showing the level of disappointment that he had at the lordship. He says their leadership style was impertinent and full of nonsense and that money is been misused. He points out that the duke needs to be fast in taking action lest there is a financial crisis. He continues to say in a figurative manner that there is inconceivable level of confusion and corruption from the officials whose mandate was to the people of the nation. This depicts just how vigilant the people were on matters political and the way in which resources were been used. Handel was not spared as he was the leader until his death later in 1747. The letter even claimed that there was a notable stupidity emanating from the leadership and that much was meant to be done to salvage the people from that ignorance from its leaders.
After the death of Handel, the duke of Cumberland returned from Scotland victorious from a war that was deemed to ravage the nation. A letter written by Thomas Morrell to the duke was a congratulatory note for the job well done in winning the war. He claims that he was afraid of the lack for victory due to relatively small number of army that they had sent but was pleased at the result they brought. In another letter written by William Shenstone, the issue of entertainment is brought about again. This was a painful and highly debatable issue then. Entertainment was seen as a way of eating away at public coffers. However the letter had an angling towards showering praises at the duke for victory from Scotland.
There were many problems that bedeviled the Maccabeus. There was eminence of war at every juncture in the leadership and the dukes and the leaders were highly disjointed. The economy of the nation was in great turmoil and there was an air of great disregard from the leaders. The war with Scotland in particular was greatly propagandized before it even happened. The problem of less army numbers and comparative advantage in favor of Scotland is one such example.