The other side of the city was only defended by the Seine, but the Allies, who had first to cross that river, feared that Buonaparte might come up and attack their rear while they were doing so. They determined, therefore, to attack the line of fortifications. The most lying proclamations were issued by the ex-King Joseph to assure the inhabitants that the bodies of the enemy who came in view were only stragglers who had managed to get past the army of the Emperor, who was dispersing the Allies most triumphantly. The forces in Paris—eight thousand troops of the line and thirty thousand of the National Guard—were reviewed in front of the Tuileries on a Sunday, to impress the people with a sense of security; but on the morning of the 29th the Empress and her child quitted the palace, attended by a regiment of seven hundred men, and fled to Blois, carrying with her the crown jewels and much public treasure, and followed by nearly all the members of Government. The population—unlike their fathers, who stopped Marie Antoinette in her attempt to escape—suffered this departure with murmurs, but without any attempt to prevent it. When she was gone they began heartily to curse Buonaparte for the trouble and disgrace he had brought upon them. That very morning Joseph issued a most flaming proclamation, assuring the Parisians that the Emperor was at hand, and would annihilate the last traces of the audacious enemy. But already the assault had commenced, and the next day, the 30th of March, it was general all along the line. The Parisians fought bravely, especially the boys from the Polytechnic schools; and as the Allies had to attack stone walls and batteries, their slaughter was great. Joseph rode along the line to encourage them in this useless, because utterly hopeless, waste of life. The Allied monarchs had, before commencing the assault, issued a proclamation, promising that all life and property should be strictly protected if the city quietly opened its gates; and, in the midst of the storming, they sent in again, by a French prisoner, the same offer, adding that, should the city be carried by assault, no power on earth could prevent it from being sacked by the enraged soldiers, and probably destroyed. Yet Joseph did not give the order for capitulation till the whole line was in the hands of the Allies, except Montmartre. The Cossacks were already in the Faubourg St. Antoine, and bombs flying into the Chaussée d'Antin. Then King Joseph, whose lying proclamation was still selling on the boulevards at a sou each, ordered Marmont to capitulate; and though he had vowed in his proclamation to stand by the Parisians to the last gasp, he then fled after the Empress to Blois. In this defence four thousand French were killed and wounded, and double that number of the Allies, as they had to face the towers and batteries crowded with soldiers and to fight their way up hill.The year 1759 is one of the most glorious in our annals. Pitt, by his own spirit, and by selecting brave and able men, had infused such ardour into our service, that our officers no longer seemed the same men. Still, France, stung by the reverses and insults which we had heaped on her, but especially by our ravages of her coast, contemplated a retaliatory descent on ours. Gunboats were accumulated at Le Havre and other ports, and fleets were kept ready at Toulon and Brest, as well as a squadron at Dunkirk, under Admiral Thurot, a brave seaman. The king sent a message to the Commons, demanding the calling out of the militia; and the twenty-four thousand French prisoners who had been left in great destitution by their own Government on our hands, were marched into the interior of the country. In July Admiral Rodney anchored in the roads of Le Havre, bombarded the town, set it on fire in several places, and destroyed many of the gunboats. In August the Toulon fleet, commanded by Admiral De la Clue, on its way to operate against our coast, was pursued by Boscawen, who had recently returned from America, and overtaken off Lagos, in Algarve. De la Clue was mortally wounded, and his ship—reckoned the finest in the French navy—and three others were taken, whilst a fifth was run aground and burnt. At the same time the blockades of Dunkirk and Brest were vigorously kept up.
In the south, affairs had been as ill conducted by the English commanders as in the north they had been carried on well. Governor Martin had made an effort to recover North Carolina. He had collected a number of Highlanders, recently emigrated to America, and a number of back-woodsmen, called Regulators, and sent them, under the command of Colonels Macdonald and Macleod, to compel the inhabitants to submission. They were to be supported by regular troops to be landed at Wilmington, and General Clinton was daily expected with the reinforcements from England. But Clinton did not appear, and the impatient Highlanders and Regulators, in marching from Cross Creek to Wilmington, were decoyed into a swamp, and there attacked and beaten. Macleod and most of the Highlanders were taken prisoners, and the Regulators, such as escaped, made again for the woods.Lord George Murray then said that, as they needs must go, he proposed that they should enter England on the Cumberland side, so as to harass Wade's troops, if he marched across to meet them. The idea was adopted as a great improvement; it was kept a profound secret. Still further to mislead the English, Lord George proposed another plan, which was also adopted—to divide the army into two columns, to march by two different routes, but to unite at Carlisle. One of these was to be led by the prince himself by Kelso, as if intending to march straight into Northumberland; the other to take the direct road through Moffat. It was resolved to leave Lord Strathallan to command in Scotland, to take up his headquarters at Perth, receive the expected succours from France, and all such reinforcements from the Highlands as should come in.
Joseph Mallord William Turner (born in 1775) has been pronounced as "essentially the great founder of English landscape painting, the greatest poet-artist our nation has yet produced. He excelled in everything—from the mere diagram and topographic map to the most consummate truth and the most refined idealism. In every touch of his there was profound thought and meaning." He was unrivalled in storms; as Napoleon said of Kleber, "He wakes on the day of battle." The remark of Admiral Bowles, when looking at Turner's "Wreck of the Minotaur," conveyed the highest compliment to his art—"No ship could live in such a sea." His "Man Overboard" is a still higher effort of genius, in conveying an expression of horror and utter despair. He was the best illustrator of our national poets. He made known to Englishmen the beauties of their native land, and made them acquainted with the picturesque on the Continent. He gave our young artists love for colour, and made us the Venetians of the modern school. From "The fighting Temeraire tugged to her last Moorings," to "Wilkie's Burial," and the "Burning of the Houses of Parliament," he let no event of his age pass without record or comment. He died in 1851.
This open breach of the Royal Family was quickly followed by the death of the queen. Besides the misery of seeing her son and husband so awfully at variance, she had long been struggling with a complaint which, out of false delicacy, she had carefully concealed. "The queen's great secret," says Horace Walpole, "was her own rupture, which, till her last illness, nobody knew but the king, her German nurse, Mrs. Mailborne, and one other person, Lady Sundon."The war in Afghanistan was alluded to in the Royal Speech, at the opening of the Session of 1843, in terms of congratulation at the complete success that had attended the recent military operations in that country, owing to the high ability with which they had been directed, as well as the constancy and valour of the European and native forces, which had established, by decisive victories on the scenes of former disasters, the superiority of her Majesty's arms, and had effected the liberation of the British subjects that had been held in captivity. This, therefore, is the proper time to relate briefly the incidents of that war, some of which are full of romantic interest. About the year 1837 the attention of the British Government in India was attracted by the conduct of certain supposed agents of Russia, in the countries to the west of the Indus. The Russian ambassador, Simonitch, was urging the Shah to lay siege to Herat, "the key to India," and the place was soon closely invested. It was saved by the fortuitous presence in the town of a gallant young officer of engineers, Eldred Pottinger, who rallied the inhabitants and beat off the enemy. Meanwhile, another Russian agent, Vicovitch by name, had been sent to Cabul. In order to counteract his designs, it was thought desirable to establish an alliance with the rulers of Afghanistan. With this view overtures were made to Dost Mahomed Khan through a mission headed by Alexander Burnes. These having failed, chiefly from the ill-advised interference with Burnes of the Governor-General, Lord Auckland, the British Government sought to establish a friendly power in Afghanistan by aiding the exiled prince, Shah Sujah, in another attempt to regain his throne. The step, which was condemned by numerous clear-sighted people in India, was probably forced upon Lord Auckland by the Melbourne Ministry, to whom it was recommended by the military authorities at home, among them the Duke of Wellington. The chief of Cabul had an army of 14,000 men, including 6,000 cavalry, with 40 field-pieces. His brothers held Candahar and the surrounding country, with a military force of 4,000 men and 50 guns. The British force assembled to support the claims of his opponent amounted to 28,000 men, aided by a contingent force of 6,000 Sikhs, furnished by the ruler of the Panjab, and about 5,000 troops raised by the Shah's eldest son. This combined force was called "the Army of the Indus." Under the chief command of Sir John Keane, it advanced to the town of Quetta, and thence to Candahar, which was occupied without opposition; and there, on the 8th of May, 1839, Shah Sujah was solemnly enthroned. After this the march was resumed towards Cabul. The fortress of Ghuznee, believed by the Afghans to be impregnable, was blown up and taken by storm. The invading army reached Cabul, and on the 7th of August the restored sovereign made his public entry into his capital. Having thus accomplished its mission, the Army of the Indus returned home, leaving behind a detachment of 8,000 men. For two years Shah Sujah and his allies remained in possession of Cabul and Candahar, Dost Mahomed having surrendered after having won a partial success over the British on the 2nd of November, 1840.
Lord Shannon, for his patronage in the Commons ￡45,000On the 9th of January, a month after their arrival, Lord Derwentwater was impeached of high treason by Mr. Lechmere in a bitter speech in the Commons. Other members, with equal acrimony, followed with impeachments against the Lords Widdrington, Nithsdale, Wintoun, Carnwath, Kenmure, and Nairn. The impeachments were carried up to the House of Lords on the same day, and on the 19th the accused noblemen were brought before the Peers, where they knelt at the bar until they were desired to rise by the Lord Chancellor, when, with the exception of Lord Wintoun, they confessed their guilt, and threw themselves on the mercy of the king. Sentence of death was immediately pronounced on those who had pleaded guilty; and Lord Wintoun was condemned after trial, but several months later he effected his escape from the Tower. Every effort was made to save the prisoners, and they were all reprieved, with the exception of Derwentwater, Kenmure, and Nithsdale. The first two were executed; but the Countess of Nithsdale, being about to take her leave of her husband, contrived, by introducing some friends, to secure his escape in female attire.
This was a thunderstroke to Newcastle—Legge, who had been so pliant, thus to rebel. Newcastle, in his consternation, hastened to Pitt, imploring him to use his influence with Legge, and promising him the Seals as Secretary, engaging to remove all prejudice from the king's mind. But not only Pitt, but the public, had been long asking whether, in these critical times, everything was to be sacrificed for the sake of this old grasping jobber at the Treasury? whether Newcastle was to endanger the whole nation by keeping out of office all men of talent? Pitt stood firm: no offers, no temptations, could move him. Newcastle, finding Pitt unmanageable, flew to Fox, who accepted the Seals on condition of having proper powers conceded to him, and agreed to support the treaties, against which he had been equally as violent as Pitt, having just before said to Dodington, "I am surprised you are not against all subsidies." Robinson was consoled with a pension of two thousand pounds a year and the post of Master of the Wardrobe. The king had returned from Hanover, and Fox was not to receive the Seals till two days after the meeting of Parliament, so that he might keep his place and support the Address. By his accession to office he changed the violence of the opposition of the Duke of Bedford, and brought the support of the Russells to the Ministry. This strength, however, did not prevent the certainty of a breakup of the Cabinet. Pitt was now arrayed against his former colleagues.SEIZURE OF SIR WILLIAM MACNAGHTEN. (See p. 495.)Thus baffled, he returned to Dublin, where he met with an enthusiastic reception. A meeting was held the next day to make arrangements for insuring his return for Clare. On the 1st of June O'Connell started for Ennis. All the towns he passed through turned out to cheer him on, with green boughs and banners suspended from the windows. He arrived at Nenagh in the night, and the town was quickly illuminated. Having travelled all night, he retired to rest at Limerick; and while he slept the streets were thronged with people anxious to get a glance at their "Liberator." A large tree of Liberty was planted before the hotel, with musicians perched on the branches playing national airs. The Limerick trades accompanied him in his progress towards Ennis, where his arrival was hailed with boundless enthusiasm, and where a triumphal car was prepared for him. Thus terminated a progress, during which he made twenty speeches, to nearly a million of persons. On the 30th of July O'Connell was a second time returned for Clare, on this occasion without opposition, and the event was celebrated with the usual demonstrations of joy and triumph.
Before these discussions took place, an attempt had been made by similar means to lead the people of Scotland into insurrection. Emissaries appeared in the towns and villages informing the people that there were preparations made for a general rising, and they were ordered to cease all work and betake themselves to certain places of rendezvous. On the morning of Sunday, the 2nd of April, the walls of Glasgow were found placarded everywhere by a proclamation, ordering all persons to cease labour and turn out for a general revolution. The next morning the magistrates called out the military, and they were drawn up in the streets in readiness for the appearance of an insurrection, but none took place. The people were all in wonder, and assembled to see what would happen; but there appeared not the slightest disposition to make any disorder, and some of the cotton mills were at work as though nothing was expected to take place. But still, the mischief had not altogether failed. Some fifty poor ignorant men had been decoyed out of Glasgow to near Kilsyth, on the assurance that four or five thousand men would there join them, and proceed to take the Carron Ironworks and thus supply themselves with artillery. These poor dupes were met on the road, on some high ground on Bonnymuir, by a detachment of armed men sent out against them, and, after some resistance, during which some of them were wounded, nineteen were made prisoners and the rest fled. Other arrests were made in different parts of Scotland, and they were tried in the following July and August; but so little interest was felt in this attempt, or in the details of what was called "the Battle of Bonnymuir," that three only were punished and the rest discharged.
VIEW OF CATO STREET, LONDON, SHOWING THE STABLE AT WHICH THE CONSPIRATORS WERE CAPTURED. A, LOFT; B, STABLE-DOOR. (From a print published in 1820.)
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On the 8th of March, 1801, General Sir Ralph Abercromby landed in Egypt, where Nelson had fought the battle of Aboukir. Menou brought down against the British twelve or fourteen thousand men, including a fine body of cavalry. Sir Ralph Abercromby landed only about ten thousand in effective order, but these were men full of ardour and disciplined to perfection. On the 8th of March they landed in face of the French, five thousand being put on shore at once, these returning no single shot whilst in the boats, though assailed by fifteen pieces of artillery from the opposite hill, and by grape-shot from Aboukir Castle. They were led on by General (afterwards Sir John) Moore; and running, or climbing on hands and knees, up the steep sand-hills, they drove the French from their cannon, and seized them. The French retreated, and posted themselves on some heights between Aboukir and Alexandria. On the 19th, having compelled Fort Aboukir to surrender, General Abercromby advanced, and found Menou had concentrated all his forces between them and Alexandria. On the 21st of March a general engagement took place. It commenced as early as three o'clock in the morning, whilst quite dark, by an attack on the British left, which was meant to draw all attention to that quarter, then a desperate charge was made on the right by the main body of the French cavalry, which hoped to get into the rear of the British infantry; but the attempted surprise failed: the French were driven back with great loss. As the day dawned the battle became general, and the French found themselves opposed not only by accustomed British doggedness, but by a precision of fire and an adroitness of man?uvre which astonished them. By ten o'clock the French were in full flight for Alexandria, leaving seventeen hundred men on the field. The loss of the British was stated at fourteen hundred killed and wounded; and, unfortunately, the brave Abercromby was killed. To complete the success, the Capitan Pacha's fleet in a few days brought a Turkish army of between five and six thousand men, and the Grand Vizier, posted at El Arish, began to march towards Cairo. General Hutchinson, now chief in command of the British army, hastened to join the Grand Vizier; but before he could accomplish this, he had to drive four thousand French from a fortified camp at Ramaneeh, and meanwhile five thousand French rushed out of Cairo and attacked the Grand Vizier. On the 27th of June Cairo capitulated, General Belliard obtaining the condition that his troops should be conveyed to the ports of France on the Mediterranean with their arms and baggage; yet they left behind them three hundred and thirteen heavy cannon and one hundred thousand pounds of gunpowder. On the 8th of June General Baird had landed at Cosseir on the Red Sea with his Indian army, and was marching through the burning desert for Cairo. Menou, cooped up at Alexandria, found it useless to contend further and, before Baird could join the main army, capitulated on the same terms as Belliard, and the Egyptian campaign was at an end. The news of the French expulsion reached France sooner than it did England, and created a strong sensation.
Lord Londonderry, wearied with the labours of the Session, had retired to his country seat at North Cray Farm, near Bexley, in Kent, to recruit his strength, and prepare to take his part as the representative of England at the forthcoming Congress of Verona, which was to be held in October. There, on the 12th of August, he committed suicide by cutting the carotid artery with a penknife. Lord Eldon, in a letter on the subject, says:—"I learn, upon the best authority, that for two or three days he was perfectly insane; and the medical men attribute that fact to the operation upon his head of the unceasing attention to business which the last harassing Session (to him) called for." The disease would appear to have been coming on some time before; he had got the idea that he was beset by secret enemies—that he was the object of conspiracies. He was full of apprehension of being waylaid in the Park, and he felt that his life was every hour in danger. His mind gave way under the pressure of these morbid fears, and he put an end to his existence in the fifty-third year of his age. Impartial history, we think, will come to the conclusion that, with intellectual abilities not much above mediocrity, he owed his success as a statesman, in a great measure, to his fixity of purpose, and to his audacity, courage, and perseverance in adhering to his line of action in the midst of the most formidable difficulties; while the strength of his will was aided by a commanding person, an imperturbable temper, extreme affability, and winning frankness of manner. Of the policy of the Government in which he bore so long a leading part, it must be said that it was narrow, exclusive, jealous of popular rights, favourable to despotism abroad and at home, devoted to the interests of the Throne and the aristocracy, at the expense of social order and national progress. Such, at all events, was the impression of the majority of the nation, and the detestation in which the London populace held his character as a statesman was painfully evinced by the shouts of exultation which followed his coffin into Westminster Abbey, where it was deposited between the remains of Fox and Pitt. This conduct greatly shocked Lord Eldon. "This morning," he writes, "I have been much affected by attending Lord Londonderry to his grave. The concourse of people between St. James's Square and the Abbey was very great; the great bulk of them behaving decorously, some behaving otherwise; but I protest I am almost sorry to have lived till I have seen in England a collection of persons so brutalised as, upon the taking the coffin at the Abbey door out of the hearse, to have received it with cheering for joy that L. was no more. Cobbett and the paper called the Statesman have, by the diabolical publications he and that paper have issued, thus demoralised these wretches."Things being in this position on the arrival of Admiral Lord Howe, he determined still, notwithstanding the Proclamation of Independence, to make every effort to procure a last chance of peace. He deeply regretted the delays which had attended his fleet, and lost no time in sending on shore an intimation that he brought conciliatory overtures. His first act was to dispatch a letter to Franklin, who, in England, had expressed so earnest a desire for accommodation of all differences, informing him of his commission to seek reconciliation, and of his powers for the purpose. But the Declaration being now made, Franklin had no longer a motive to conceal his real sentiments, and he replied in terms which greatly astonished Howe, filling his letters only with complaints of "atrocious injuries," and of what America had endured from "your proud and uninformed nation." Howe next turned to Washington, to whom he dispatched a flag of truce, bearing a letter to the Commander-in-Chief. But as Washington could only be regarded as an insurgent leader, Lord Howe thought he could not officially recognise a title conferred only by the American Congress, and therefore did not address him as "General," but simply as "George Washington, Esquire." Washington refused to treat in any other character than that of Commander-in-Chief of the American forces. He instantly returned Howe's letter, and forwarded the other papers to Congress. One of these was a circular declaration to the late royal Governors, enclosing a copy of Lord Howe's commission, and stating that all who should submit would be pardoned; that any town or province which declared its adhesion to the Crown should at once be exempt from the provisions of all the late Acts of Parliament, especially as regarded their trade; and that, moreover, all such persons as were active in promoting the settlement of their districts should be duly rewarded. The moment Congress received this document they ordered it to be published in the newspapers, that "the people might see how the insidious Court of Great Britain had endeavoured to disarm and amuse them," and that "the few whom hopes of moderation and justice on the part of the British Government had still kept in suspense, might now at length be convinced that the valour alone of their country is to save its liberties." Lord Howe, undeterred by this spirited proceeding of Congress, on the 20th of July sent the Adjutant-General once more to Washington, with another letter, still addressed to "George Washington, Esquire," but adding a number of etceteras. Washington was not to be caught by so shallow an artifice. The proposed interview, like the last, therefore, came to nothing, except that Congress took advantage of these repeated efforts to insinuate that the British were afraid of fighting.详情
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