Thanks to the blind complaisance of its democrats and the timid subserviency of its once haughty oligarchs, he became master of its fleet and arsenal (16th of May 1797).
He was unpopular with them, however, owing to his subserviency to the Jesuits, and resigned the agency in 1607 owing to the remonstrances of the English arch-priest George Birkhead.
During his reign Savoy abandoned its attitude of subserviency to France, adopting a policy of greater independence, and became more friendly to Austria.
When the Democratic national convention met at Cincinnati in June 1856, Pierce was an avowed candidate for renomination, but as his attitude on the slavery question, and especially his subserviency to the South in supporting the pro-slavery party in the Territory of Kansas, had lost him the support of the Northern wing of his party, the nomination went to James Buchanan.
He was high in favour with Sultan Abd-ul-Aziz and fell much under the influence of General Ignatiev, the forceful Russian ambassador before the war of 1877-78, his subserviency to Russia earning for him the nickname of "Mahmudoff."