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Lieut.-General the Hon. Sir A. Wellesley, K.B., to Viscount Castlereagh,
Secretary of State. “ MY DEAR LORD,
Cork, 7th July, 1808. “ I arrived here last night, and I find that the 20th light dragoons and the 3600 tons of shipping for the infantry are not arrived. The Irish commissariat horses, for the draught of the artillery, are not yet all arrived, and will not be on board until Saturday. I propose to wait till that day for the dragoons and the additional tonnage, and if they should not have arrived, I shall sail with what is ready, and let the rest follow.
“ By some accident which, from not having seen the agent of transports, I cannot yet account for, we have four transports, as stated underneath, which have not been returned to me in any statement from the Transport Board or from your brother. These vessels have enabled General Floyd to embark the 95th, and to make some provision for the embarkation of the 36th. But it appears to me, that the whole are too much crowded, and if the additional tonnage does not arrive to-morrow, I shall settle to leave behind the veteran battalion or the 36th, to follow with the additional tonnage and the 20th dragoons, to give more space to all the troops in the transports. If the additional tonnage should arrive, and I should find that I do not want these four ships, I shall leave them behind.
“Upon a review of your instructions, and a consideration of the state of affairs in Spain, according to the best accounts, I rather think that, as soon as I have got every thing away from Cork, I shall best serve the cause, by going myself to Corunna and joining the fleet off Cape Finisterre or the Tagus. I propose accordingly to go on board one of the craft, and I expect to be at the rendezvous before the troops.-Believe me," &c.
On the 10th of July all was ready the departure of the expedition. The for sailing: The enthusiasm of the following letter is the last addressed people in the cause of Spanish liberty to Lord Castlereagh before quitting had led to censures on the apparently Ireland :unnecessary delay which occurred in Lieutenant-General the Hon. Sir A. Wellesley, K.B., to Viscount
Castlereagh, Secretary of State. “ MY DEAR LORD,
Cove, 10th July, 1808. “ The wind is still contrary, but we hope it will change so as to sail this evening. We are unmoored, and shall not wait one moment after the wind may be fair.
“ I see that people in England complain of the delay which has taken place in the sailing of the expedition ; but, in fact, none bas taken place ; and even if all had been on board, we could not have sailed before this day. With all the expedition which we could use, we could not get the horses of the artillery to Cork till yesterday, and they were immediately embarked ; and it was only yesterday that the 20th dragoons arrived, and the ships to contain the 36th regiment, and a detachment of the 45th, which arrived yesterday evening, and embarked.
“ Your instructions to me left London on the Friday evening, and I was at Cork on the following Wednesday, which is as much expedition as if the instructions had come by the post.
“ I leave here at the disposal of Government 1668 tons of shipping. The resident agent will report the names of the ships to the Transport Board.
“ Believe me," &c.
On the 12th of July the expedition den under Sir John Moore. The comsailed, and scarcely had it done so ere mand of the army, thus powerfully the Ministry determined to supersede augmented, was assigned to Sir Hew Sir Arthur Wellesley in the command. Dalrymple, then Governor of GibralIt was also decided that the army tar. The mortifying intelligence of should be joined by a force under Bri. his being thus summarily superseded gadier-General Acland, amounting to was transmitted to Sir Arthur in the 5000 men, and by that acting in Swe following laconic despatch :
Viscount Castlereagh, Secretary of State, to Lieutenant-General the
Downing Street, 15th July, 1808. “ I am to acquaint you that his Majesty has been pleased to intrust the command of his troops serving in the coasts of Spain and Portugal to Lieutenant-General Sir Hew Dalrymple, with Lieutenant-General Sir Harry Burrard, second in command.
“ The Lieutenant-General has been furnished with copies of your instructions up to the present date exclusive. These instructions you will be pleased to carry into execution with every expedition that circumstances will permit, without awaiting the arrival of the Lieutenant-General, reporting to him your proceedings. And should you be previously joined by a senior officer, you will in that case communicate to him your orders, and afford him every assistance in carrying them into execution.
“ I have the honour to be," &c.
Sir Arthur Wellesley received the enemy. A more painful situation to intimation that his appointment had an oficer of high spirit can scarcely. been rescinded while on board H.M.S. be imagined. Donegal, off the coast of Portugal. How then does he act under such That it must have been the occasion trying circumstances ? Does he transof deep mortification cannot be doubt- mit angry remonstrances, or decline ed. He must have felt that he had acting in the inferior situation assignbeen hardly, if not unjustly, treated. ed him by his sovereign? The anHis sphere of command had been sud- swer to these questions will be found denly and unexpectedly diminished in the following extract from a letter from an army to a brigade, while in to Lord Castlereagh :the very act of preparing to meet the
“ Pole and Burghersh have apprized me of the arrangements for the future command of this army; and the former has informed me of your kindness towards me, of which I have received so many instances that I can never doubt it in any case. All that I can say on the subject is, that whether I am to command the army or not, or am to quit it, I shall do my best to ensure its success ; and you may depend on it, that I shall not hurry the operations, or commence them one moment sooner than they ought to be commenced, in order that I may acquire the credit of the success.
« The Government will determine for me in what way they will employ me hereafter, either here or elsewhere," &c.
The preceding passage affords a it to be my duty to serve with zeal and fine illustration of the high principles promptitude, when or wherever the which influence the true soldier ; and King or his Government may think we find in Colonel Gurwood's work proper to employ me. an anecdote, which displays no less It must be attended with great adprominently the same qualities. Sir vantage to find Wellington thus enArthur Wellesley, when employed in forcing a great military principle, not the Sussex district after his return only by precept, but example. Unfrom India, was asked by a familiar fortunately it is one by no means so friend, how he who had commanded ar- generally recognised as it ought to be. mies of forty thousand men ; who had Many instances might be adduced of received the thanks of Parliament for officers declining to serve their counhis victories, and been elected Knight try in a capacity which they were of the Bath, could submit to be re- pleased to consider inferior to their duced to the command of a brigade of merits. But Wellington acted differ. infantry ? “ For this reason," was the ently, and we regard it as most importreply. “ I am nimukwallah, as we ant that this should be known. The say in the East; I have ate of the precedent will not be without influence King's salt, and therefore I consider either now or in succeeding times,
Printed by Ballantyne and Company, Paul's Work, Edinburgh,
Amidst the deluge of new and many authors whose names are as cphemeral publications under which household sounds, whose works for the press both in France and England that very reason are as a strange and is groaning, and the woful depravity unknown tongue. Everyone has of public taste, in all branches of li heard of Racine and Molière, of Bosterature, which in the former country suet and Fénélon, of Voltaire and has followed the Revolution of the Rousseau, of Chateaubriand and MaThree Glorious Days, it is not the dame de Staël, of Pascal and Rabelais. least important part of the duty of all We would beg to ask even our best those who have any share, however informed and most learned readers, inconsiderable, in the direction of the with how many of their works they objects to which public thought is to are really familiar; how many of their be applied, to recur from time to time felicitous expressions have sunk into to the great and standard works of a their recollections; how many of their former age ; and from amidst the ideas are engraven on their memory? dazzling light of passing meteors in Others may possess more retentive the lower regions of the atmosphere, memories, or more extensive reading to endeavour to direct the public gaze than we do ; but we confess, when we to those fixed luminaries whose radiance apply such a question, even to the in the higher heavens shines, and ever constant study of thirty years, we feel will shine, in imperishable lustre. 'not a little mortified at the time which From our sense of the importance and has been misapplied, and the brilliant utility of this attempt, we are not to ideas once obtained from others which be deterred by the common remark, have now faded from the recollection, that these authors are in every body's and should rejoice much to obtain from hands; that their works are read at others that retrospect of past greatness school, and their names become as which we propose ourselves to lay behousehold sounds. We know that fore our readers. many things are read at school which Every one now is so constantly in are forgotten at college ; and many the habit of reading the new publicathings learned at college which are tions, of devouring the fresh producunhappily and permanently discarded tions of the press, as we would fresh in later years; and that there are eggs or rolls to breakfast, that we for.
VOL. XLI. XO. CCLX.
get the extraordinary superiority of which has undergone the animating standard works; and are obliged to episodes, the heart-stirring feelings con go back to the studies of our youth sequent on social convulsion. In the for that superlative enjoyment which branches of literature which depend arises from the perusal of authors, on the relations of men to each other, where every sentence is thought and history - politics- historical philosooften every word conception; where phy and historical romance, the supenew trains of contemplation or emo- riority of the modern school is so protion are awakened in every page, and digious, that it is impossible to find a the volume is closed almost every mi. parallel to it in former days: and even nute to meditate on the novelty or the dignified language and eagleglance justice of the reflections which arise of the Bishop of Meaux sinks into from its study. And it is not on the insignificance, compared to the vast first perusal of these authors that this ability which, in inferior minds, expeexquisite pleasure is obtained. In the rience and actual suffering have brought heyday of youth and strength, when to bear on the investigation of public imagination is ardent, and the world affairs. Modern writers were for long unknown, it is the romance of the at a loss to understand the cause which story, or the general strain of the ar- had given such superior pathos, energument which carries the reader on, gy, and practical wisdom to the histoand many of the finest and most spi- rians of antiquity ; but the French ritual reflections are overlooked or un- Revolution alone explained the mysappreciated; but in later years, when tery. When modern times were life has been experienced, and joy brought into collision with the pasand sorrow felt, when the memory is sions and the suffering consequent on stored with recollections, and the ima- democratic ascendency and social congination with images, it is reflection vulsion, they were not long of feeling and observation which constitute the the truths which experience had taught chief attraction in composition. And to ancient times, and acquiring the judging of the changes wrought by power of vivid description and conTime in others from what we have densed yet fervent narrative by which experienced ourselves, we anticipate a the great historians of antiquity are high gratification, even in the best in- characterised. formed readers, by a direction of their At the head of the modern prose attention to many passages in the writers of France, we place Madame great French writers of the age of de Staël, Chateaubriand, and Guizot : Louis XIV. and the Revolution, a and to their discussion we propose to comparison of their excellences, a devote this and some suceceding pacriticism on their defects, and an ex- pers, in contrast with the great olden position of the mighty influence which writers of the Augustan age of Louis the progress of political events has XIV. The general style of the two had
upon the ideas reflected, even to first and the most imaginative of these the greatest authors, from the age in writers. De Staël and Chateaubriand which they lived, and the external is essentially different from that of events passing around them.
Bossuet, Fénélon, and Massillon. We The two great eras of French prose have no longer either the thoughts, literature are those of Louis XIV. and the language, or the images of these the Revolution. If the former can great and dignified writers! With the boast of Bossuet, the latter can appeal pompous grandeur of the Grande Moto Chateaubriand: if the former still · narque ; with the awful splendour of shine in the purest lustre in Fénélon, the palace, and the irresistible power the latter may boast the more fervent of the throne ; with the superb mag. pages, and varied genius of De Staël; nificence of Versailles, its marbles, if the former is supreme in the tragic halls, and forests of statues, have passand comic muse, and can array Racine, ed away the train of thought by which Corneille and Molière, against the the vices and corruption then chiefly transient Lilliputians of the romantic prevalent in society were combated school, the latter can show in the by these worthy soldiers of the militia poetry and even the prose of Lamar- of Christ. Strange to say, the ideas tine a condensation of feeling, a depth of that despotic age are more condemof pathos and energy of thought which natory of princes ; more eulogistic of can never be reached but in an age the people, more confirmatory of the principles which, if pushed to their le- liel of the Revolution, yet there is no gitimate consequences, lead to demo- material difference in their political cracy, than those of the age when conclusions; so completely does a close the sovereignty of the people was ac- observation of the progress of a revotually established. In their eloquent lution induce the same conclusions in declamations the wisdom, justice, and minds of the highest stamp, with what. purity of the masses are the constant ever early prepossessions the survey subject of eulogy; almost all social may have been originally commenced. and political evils are traced to the The Dix Années d'Exil, and the obsercorruptions of courts and the vices of vations on the French revolution, might kings. The applause of the people, have been written by Chateaubriand, the condemnation of rulers, in Telema- and Madame de Staël would have little chus, often resembles rather the frothy wherefrom to dissent in the Monarchie declamations of the Tribune in favour selon la Charte, or later political wriof the sovereign multitude, than the tings of her illustrious rival. severe lessons addressed by a courtly It is by their works of imagination, prelate to the heir of a despotic throne. taste, and criticism, however, that With a fearless courage worthy of the these immortal writers are principally highest commendation, and very dif- celebrated, and it is with them that we ferent from the base adulation of mo- propose to commence this critical surdern times to the Baal of popular vey. Their names are universally power, Bossuet, Massillon, and Bour- known: Corinne, Delphine, De l'Al daloué, incessantly rung in the ears of lemagne, the Dix Années d'Exil, and their courtly auditory the equality of De la Litterature, are as familiar in mankind in the sight of heaven and sound, at least, to our ears, as the Gethe awful words of judgment to come. nie de Christianisme, the Itineraire, These imaginary and Utopian effu- the Martyrs, Atala et Réné of the far sions now excite a smile, even in the travelled pilgrim of expiring feudalmost youthful student; and a suffering ism are to our memories. Each has age, taught by the experienced evils beauties of the very highest cast in of democratic ascendency, has now this department, and yet their excellearned to appreciate, as they deserve, lences are so various, that we know the profound and caustic sayings in not to which to award the palm. which Aristotle, Sallust, and Tacitus If driven to discriminate between have delivered to future ages the con- them, we should say that De Staël densed wisdom on the instability and has more sentiment, Chateaubriand tyranny of the popular rule, which more imagination ; that the forages of calamity had brought home to mer has deeper knowledge of huthe sages of antiquity.
man feelings, and the latter more vaIn Madame de Staël and Chateau- ried and animated pictures of human briand we have incomparably more manners ; that the charm of the fororiginality and variety of thought; far mer consists chiefly in the just and more just and experienced views of profound views of life, its changes and human affairs; far more condensed emotions with which her works abound, wisdom, which the statesman and the and the fascination of the latter in the philosopher may treasure in their me- brilliant phantasmagoria of actual mories, than in the great writers of the scenes, impressions, and events which age of Louis XIV. We see at once his writings exhibit. No one can exin their productions that we are deal. ceed Madame de Staël in the expresing with those who speak from expe- sion of the sentiment or poetry of rience of human affairs; to whom nature, or the developement of the years of suffering have brought cen- varied and storied associations which turies of wisdom; and who in the stern historical scenes or monuments never school of adversity have learned to ab- fail to awaken in the cultivated mind; jure both much of the fanciful El Do. but in the delineation of the actual fearado speculations of preceding philo- tures she exhibits, or the painting of sophy, and the perilous effusions of the various and gorgeous scenery or succeeding republicanism. Though objects she presents, she is greatly the one was by birth and habit an inferior to the author of the Genius of aristocrat of the ancient and now de- Christianity. She speaks emotion to caying school, and the other, a liberal the heart, not pictures to the eye. nursed at the feet of the great Gama Chateaubriand, on the other hand, has