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that they had been occupied as they were for the last three weeks, but more especially for the last three days. They were the same orderly set of men they had been before the attack on the town, and were just as eager to fight Soult as they were to storm Badajoz : the only change visible was their thinned ranks! In my regiment alone, out of 750 privates, 434 had fallen; and of the officers, who, at the commencement of the sieges counted 24, but five remained unhurt!

The wounded by this time were all brought to the different hospitals ; and those of the dead, which had not been drowned in the ditch near the breaches, or at the Ravelin of San Roque, were buried; and but few paces were to be found that did not show traces of the grave-digger's hand. The men of the Connaught Rangers, or, as they called themselves, “the Boys," had, nevertheless, their joke, and the merits and demerits of the enterprise were regularly canvassed by them. The following conversation, which I am about to relate, will give the reader a slight insight into the view they took of the matter. Ten or a dozen of “the boys” had got together near my tent, where I still lay wounded, and after they had made themselves tolerably comfortable over a large camp-kettle of spiced wine, one of them-a man of my own companynamed Paddy Aisy, having fairly discussed the merits of the contents of the camp-kettle, began to give his opinion of our late operations. “ Well !" said he, now ids all past and gone, and wasn't it the divil's own dthroll business, the taking that same place; and wasn't Long-nose (meaning the Duke of Wellington) a quare lad to sthrive to get into it, seeing how it was definded! But what else could he do, afther all? didn't he recave ordhers to do it; and didn't he say to us all, Boys,' says he, ids myself that's sorry to throuble yees upon this dirty arrand ; but we must do it, for all that; and iv yees can get into it, by hook or by crook, be the powers, id 'ill be the making ov yees all —and ov me too!' and didn't he spake the thruth? 'Sure,' says he, did I ever tell yees a lie, or spake a word to yees that wasn't as thrue as the Gospil? and, iv yees folly my directions, there's nothin can bate yees !! And sure, afther we got in, was he like the rest, sthriving to put us out before we divarted ourselves ? Not he, faith. It was he that spoke to the boys' dacently. Well, boys,' says he, when he met myself and a few more aising a house ov a thrifle,' well, boys,' says he, (for he knew the button !) . God bless your work! ids myself that's proud to think low complately yees tuck the concate out ov the Frinch 88th, in the castel last night. : Why, Sir,' says I, (forgettin to call him my Lord,) the divil a Frinch Connaught Ranger ever was born that the Irish Connaught Rangers isn't able to take the concate out ov;' and ids what he said upon the same, splittin his sides with laffin, that it was thrue for me there wasn't; and blur-an-ouns, boys, aint he the man to stand by? Don't he take the rough and the smooth with us, and wouldn't it be a pitty not to give him his dew ? don't he expose himself to the wet and the cowld with us, and lie out on the grass at night, like any other baste ? and ain't he afthur kicking the Frinch before him, just as we'd kick an ould foot-ball ? Be the powers, whin I see him cummin next or nigh me, my heart gets so big that my body isn't big enough to hould it, and it jumps up clane into my throat- to get room ! And don't think that I'm romancin, when I tell yees how he said we tuck the concate out oy the Frinch 88th; he said every word on it, and more too-iv I could repate it in his own words !" " Why,” replied Corney Fagan, “ what you say is parfectly thrue ; we ought to stand by him,—and didn't we? Sure yees remember how Misther Mackie ran up the laddher as nimble as a cat, and poor Misther Martin thought to do the same, till he was kilt! and didn't Captain Seton owe his life to his being so thin that the French couldn't see him undher the gun? and whin we have such a man to direct us, and such officers to lade us on, why, what else can we do but folly them through thick and thin ?"

The sound of the drum for roll-call put a stop to any further colloquy; but rude as was the dialect, and homely the language, much might be gathered from it. It gave to the hearer the unsophisticated opinion of those men, whose deeds, in a great measure, tended to settle the European contest.

What was uttered by those few obscure individuals, in their own rude phraseology, was the opinion of the entire army; and they who would strive to efface those impressions, which were imprinted upon the hearts of the Peninsular soldiers, might as well strive to efface the sun from the heavens.

While we were occupied as I have described at Badajoz, Soult was busied in collecting a force sufficient to ensure the safety of that city. On the 1st of April, placing himself at the head of 25,000 men, he broke up from Seville ; on the 8th he arrived at Villa-Franca, only two marches distant from Badajoz, but yet two days after its capture. Mortified beyond measure at this unlooked-for misfortune, he wished to press onward, and, by a brilliant success, wipe away the disgrace; but he was in no condition to act as his zeal prompted him, because his own force was inadequate to the task; and Marmont, instead of co-operating with him, frittered away his time before Rodrigo and Almeida, or in the dispersion of a few thousand wretched Portuguese militia. The bulk of our covering army being thus under no apprehension of being molested, passed the Guadiana, and established itself on the right bank of that river. Soult retired back upon Seville, and Marmont, closely pressed by our horse, retired upon Salamanca. Thus terminated our operations before Badajoz, which, as may be seen, were of no common description. Four thousand prisoners, a considerable quantity of ammunition, with one hundred and seventy-two pieces of cannon, and one hundred thousand shot, were found in the place. Our loss exceeded five thou. sand men ; and although no officer of a higher rank than colonel was killed, it is a singular circumstance that every general was wounded on the night of the assault. Picton, Colville, Kempt, Walker, and Bowes, all heading either brigades or divisions, were wounded; yet the men, notwithstanding, went through their work well; which proves what I have always said, and said from long experience, and an intimate knowledge of the materials which compose our army, that troops storming a breach are as well, if not better, when left to their own officers. A soldier of the old Peninsular army (but where can we expect to see, during our sojourn in this world, such a specimen of what a true British soldier should be ?) was ever ready to lay down his life at the bidding of his officer-and what more can any man do? But the countless gallant exploits that have been achieved by our army in Portugal and Spain, without the aid of generals, are sufficient to illustrate the truth of what I have so frequently repeated.

All writers that have written upon the taking of Badajoz, whether French or English, agree that it was one of the best connected, one of the most gallant, as well as one of the most bloody, exploits recorded in history. So secret were the arrangements of Lord Wellington before he invested the place, and so prompt and straightforward his operations after he had taken that step, that we are at a loss whether most to admire his strategy or daring. Even Soult himself, the most celebrated of Napoleon's captains, was under no apprehension for the safety of this fortress. Count Phillipon's fine defence of it the preceding year, a garrison of six thousand men, and the formation of numerous outworks, appeared to be a sufficient guarantee for his confidence. The place was, moreover, amply provisioned for three months; and all those causes, if to be combated by another sort of man than him that was at the head of the British army, would have been sufficient to ensure the safety of the place; but, as it was, they only made its loss the more certain, because Soult, with that presumption which scarcely any Frenchman can divest himself of, relied too firmly on his own dispositions, and the quality of his soldiers, while he held those of his antagonist, as well as the sort of troops which he commanded, at too cheap a rate : his mortification must, therefore, have been at the greatest height, when he found himself out-generalled by the one, and out-fought by the other.


General Lery, chief engineer of Soult's army, and he who superintended the arrangements for the defence of Badajoz, was so utterly confounded upon hearing of its fall, that he wrote to General Kellerman respecting its capture." The conquest of Badajoz,” said he, “ costs me eight engineers. I am not yet acquainted with the details of that fatal event. Never was there a place in a better state, better supplied, and better provided with the requisite number of troops. There is in that event a marked fatality. I confess my inability to account for its bad defence. Very extensive works have been constructed: all our calculations have been disappointed; and Lord Wellington, with his Anglo-Portuguese troops, has taken the place, as it were, in the presence of two armies, amounting together to about eighty thousand men. In short, I think the capture of Badajoz a very extraordinary event”—(and he was right)—" and I should be much at a loss to account for it in a clear and distinct manner."

Now this is plain speaking, and says more in praise of our men than any British writer could do ; but the air of mystery which Monsieur Lery strives to throw over the affair is amusing enough. No person can deny that the French are good troops, and that at this same siege they fought well; and there cannot be a shadow of doubt,—at least there is none on my mind,—but that they would have been successful, had not our men fought better than they did ; and thus may the mystery be solved.

[To be continued.]


On the evening of the 1st of March, 1816, one of his Majesty's vessels employed in the British Channel for the suppression of smug. gling, and of which I was then first-lieutenant, was lying safely moored in the snug and beautiful harbour of Dartmouth. We had just put in from a short cruise ; and the work of the day being finished, the ropes coiled up, the decks swept, and everything ready for going through the usual operation of " holy-stoning" the following morning; -a proportion of the officers and men were preparing for a cruise on shore, while the “ship-keepers” were equally intent on having a skylark on board. At this time, when fun and frolic were the order of the day with all, I received a letter from the captain, informing me that a smuggling vessel was expected on the coast, and directing me to send the second-lieutenant with the galley armed, to look out between Torbay and Dartmouth during the night. The order was, of

course, a damper” to the good humour of many; and on no one did it appear to have a greater effect than on my brother officer, who was that evening engaged to a tea party, where he expected to meet a young West-country beauty, whose sparkling eyes had brought him to, and a broadside of charms and accomplishments had so completely riddled his heart, and effected what a random shot from her "bow-chasers" had commenced,—that report said he was fairly in the doldrums ;” and, judging from the sudden dropping of the brails of that part of his countenance elegantly termed the " under-jaw," I was inclined to think report, for once, had laid aside her "tooth-drawer's" propensity. Sympathizing, therefore, in my messmate's disappointment, and not being that night very deeply in love myself, I volunteered to undertake his duty on the occasion ; which offer, with very little pressing on my part, and lots of thanks on his, being accepted, the necessary orders were given, and we each retired to our respective cabins to prepare for our different occupations; and in a short time both re-appeared in the gun-room : he, as complete and as sweet a nautical Adonis as a new swab, a new gang of rigging, and a pint bottle of lavender-water could make him; and myself, with the assistance of a suit of "Flushing over my usual dress of a round jacket and trousers,—no bad representative of the celebrated “ Dirk Hatteraick."

The galley was shortly after hauled up alongside, and the arms, bittacle, and other necessary articles being deposited in her, six seamen, one marine, and myself, took our seats ;—the painter was cast off, --and with muffled-oars we commenced paddling her out of the harbour, so silently, that not even a ripple was heard under her bows to interrupt the mournful “ All’s well" of the sentry, as it swept along the glassy surface of the Dart. As the boat slowly increased her distance from the latter vessel, that lay like a seamew on the water,-her rigging, that resembled a spider's web spread between us and heaven,-gradually disappeared : the lights of the near and overhanging houses, for a few short minutes, shone brilliantly between her masts and yards, like winter stars through a leafless tree; but long before the battlements of the romantically-situated church of Saint Petrox were distinguishable ahead, naught remained in view astern, save the lofty black land, and glittering lights of the elevated town ;--for the poor little “barkey" had vanished from our sight, never, alas! to be again beheld by the greater part of my ill-fated crew.

Pursuing our course down the harbour, we soon gained the “narrows,” and passing almost within oar's length of the rocky point on which stands the hostile-looking church of Saint Petrox," and the adjoining fortifications, we left the opposite shore, together with the remains of the humble tower, known by the imposing name of " Kingsware Castle,” on our larboard side, and shortly after reached the wild anchorage called “ Dartmouth Range." From thence we passed through the Sound that separates the stupendous rock named the " Dartmouth Mewstone" from the Main, and rowing easily alongshore to the eastward, rounded the Berry Head," and entered the beautiful and spacious roadstead called “Torbay.” On arriving off Brixham, (the spot I considered most likely for the smuggler to attempt,) four of the oars were run across ; and, while the major part of the crew dozed on their thwarts, the galley was kept in her position by the two remaining oars; the helmsman and rowers looking out brightly in every direction, and occasionally "laying on their oars " altogether, in order to catch the sound either of the flapping canvass or of the rippling of the water under the bows of the expected vessel, as the darkness of the night rendered it probable our ears might serve us better than our eyes on the occasion.

In this manner we continued some time; and in addition to the coldness of the night, suffered much from passing showers; but as smugglers generally choose dirty weather for their operations, this only increased the probability of a landing being attempted. The hopes, therefore, of making a seizure kept us in good humour, and enabled us to grin and bear” the inclemency of the weather tolerably well, And after the lapse of some hours, these hopes were for a few seconds elevated to the highest pitch. About midnight, as we lay benumbed with the cold, and half-drenched with rain, the faint splash of water was heard on the larboard bow; all eyes were in an instant turned in that direction,--and through the obscurity of the night, we thought we observed an object on the water. Shortly, the splashes were distinctly heard! The sound appeared to impart heat to our bodies, and the cold embrace of our wet garments was, no longer felt. The order “Give way, lads, off all," was given in a whisper, and obeyed with alacrity, in silence: the galley sprung under her oars,—and darting like a falcon on its prey,—we, in a few seconds, found ourselveshead and stern" alongside of a galley belonging to H. M. R. C.

Our disappointment was great, and I may add, mutual; as the other crew were on the same "scent” as ourselves : growling was however useless. We therefore had a dry laugh at each other's expense; and after a quarter of an hour's whispering together, we parted company, with the friendly wish on both sides of,“ if we don't fall in with her, I hope you will." More courteous landsmen would, in all probability, have expressed the wish without the proviso. "Jack," however, confines himself to saying only what he means.

The - -'s galley on parting pulled deeper into the bay, and we, in order to double the chance of falling in with the expected smuggler, pulled farther out; where, after lying some time, and

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