. On 3 Dec. 1779 Sir James Harris, the British ambassador to Russia, had presented a
proposal for an Anglo-Russian alliance. It soon shared the fate of two other such
proposals made since his arrival at St. Petersburg in late 1777. By 14 Dec., Catherine
II determined, as she had before, that Russia's position vis-à-vis other European
powers made such a compact inadvisable (De Madariaga, Armed Neutrality of 1780
, p. 121–138).