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      The Bishops Choice.A Military Zealot.Hopeful Beginnings.Signs of Storm.The Quarrel.Distress of Mzy.He Refuses to Yield.His Defeat and Death.

      During the winter the Americans had been preparing for war, fabricating and repairing arms, drilling militia, and calling on one another, by proclamations, to be ready. On the 26th of February, 1775, Gage sent a detachment to take possession of some brass cannon and field-pieces collected at Salem. A hundred and fifty regulars landed at Salem for this purpose, but, finding no cannon there, they proceeded to the adjoining town of Danvers. They were stopped at a bridge by a party of militia, under Colonel Pickering, who claimed the bridge as private property, and refused a passage. There was likely to be bloodshed on the bridge, but it was Sunday, and some ministers of Salem pleaded the sacredness of the day, and prevailed on Colonel Pickering to let the soldiers pass. They found nothing, and soon returned.

      On the other hand, the Corresponding Society and the Society for Constitutional Information kept up an open correspondence with the National Convention of France, even after the bloody massacres of September of this year, which we have yet to mention. Unwarned by these facts, they professed to see, in the example of Frenchmen, the only chance of the liberation of the English nation from the oppressions of the Crown and of an overgrown aristocracy. They made no secret of their desire to establish a Republic in Great Britain; and the Society for Constitutional Information included amongst its members a number of red-hot Americans. These Societies and the Revolutionary Society in London continued to send over glowing addresses to the French Convention, declaring their desire to fraternise with them for liberty and equality, and their determination never again to fight with Frenchmen at the command of despots.In the course of the summer, the French at Three Rivers became aware that a band of Iroquois was prowling in the neighborhood, and sixty men went out to meet them. Far from retreating, the 420 Iroquois, who were about twenty-five in number, got out of their canoes, and took post, waist-deep in mud and water, among the tall rushes at the margin of the river. Here they fought stubbornly, and kept all the Frenchmen at bay. At length, finding themselves hard pressed, they entered their canoes again, and paddled off. The French rowed after them, and soon became separated in the chase; whereupon the Iroquois turned, and made desperate fight with the foremost, retreating again as soon as the others came up. This they repeated several times, and then made their escape, after killing a number of the best French soldiers. Their leader in this affair was a famous half-breed, known as the Flemish Bastard, who is styled by Ragueneau "an abomination of sin, and a monster produced between a heretic Dutch father and a pagan mother."

      [Pg 379]

      DEPARTURE OF BEAUJEU.Whilst Dumouriez had thus overrun the Netherlands, other French generals had been equally pushing on aggressions. Custine, with about twenty thousand men, had marched upon the German towns on the Rhine; had taken Spires, Worms, and Mayence by the 21st of October. These towns abounded with Democrats, who had imbibed the grand doctrine of the Rights of Man, and laboured, to their cost, under the same delusion as the Belgiansthat the French were coming solely for their liberation and advantage. Custine advanced to Frankfort-on-the-Main, which he plundered without mercy. Custine called loudly for co-operation from Kellermann; but Kellermann not complying, he was superseded by Beurnonville, who was ordered to take Trves. He attempted it, but too late in the season, and failed. Custine, who had advanced too far from the main army to support his position, still, however, garrisoned Frankfort with two thousand men, and took up his own quarters at Ober-Ursel and Homburg, a little below Frankfort, in the commencement of December.

      On the return of Wellington to the north, Beresford strictly blockaded Badajoz, and made all the preparations that he could for taking it by storm. But he was almost wholly destitute of tools for throwing up entrenchments, and of men who understood the business of sapping and mining. He was equally short of artillery, and the breaching-guns which he had, had no proper balls. The howitzers were too small for his shells, and he had few, if any, well-skilled officers of artillery. Besides this, the ground was very rocky, and the enemy, owing to their slow progress in the works, were able to make repeated sorties, so that they had killed four or five hundred of our men. In this situation, on the 12th of May, Beresford received the intelligence that Soult was advancing against him with nearly thirty thousand infantry and four thousand horse. Soult had been set at liberty to leave Seville by the conclusion of Graham's and Lape?a's expedition, and he had received reinforcements both from Sebastiani and from Madrid. Beresford immediately raised the siege, but instead of retiring he advanced against Soult to give him battle. Beresford had about twenty-five thousand infantry and two thousand cavalry, but unfortunately ten thousand of these were Spaniards, for Casta?os had joined him. Casta?os was one of the best and most intelligent generals of Spain, and had a mind so far free from the absurd pride of his countrymen that he was willing to serve under Beresford. Blake was also in his army with a body of Spanish troops; but Blake was not so compliant as Casta?os, and their troops were just as undisciplined as ever.

      So close were they upon King Joseph, that a party of the British, under Captain Wyndham, came upon him in his carriage, and fired through the window. Joseph had the good fortune to escape to horse, and gallop off, but his carriage fell into the hands of the British, and it was found crammed with the most precious spoil of the churches and palaces of Spain. Amongst his baggage, which also was taken, were found some of the finest paintings of the Spanish masters, rich plate, including a splendid dinner-service, a gorgeous wardrobe, and a number of his women, for he was a perfect Sybarite in luxury and voluptuousness. No such scene was witnessed, except on the defeat of some Eastern army. The officers had gorged themselves with the spoils of Spain, and here they were left, amid crowds of wives and mistresses, monkeys, poodles, parrots, silks, satins, and jewellery. The officers and soldiers had run for it, with nothing but their arms and their clothes on their backs, and all along the roads leading from the city was one vast crowding, jostling mass of waggons, loaded with all sorts of rich spoils, splendid dresses, and wines, and money, and fine ladies in the most terrible hurry and fright. Sheep, cattle, lambs, like a great fair, were left behind, and became the booty of the pursuers. There was a vigorous bursting open of packages, and rich wardrobes of both officers and ladies were soon fluttering in the windsgorgeous uniforms on the backs of common soldiers and Portuguese camp-followersfine silks and satins, and laces and gold chains, on the persons and necks of common women. The military chest was seized, and the soldiers freely helped themselves to its contents. Lord Wellington says that the troops got about a million of money. Planks were placed from waggon to waggon, and a great auction was going on everywhere, the lucky captors converting everything possibleeven the heavy Spanish dollarsinto gold, as more convenient for carriage. The inhabitants of the city made rich bargains, besides managing to help themselves plentifully in the scramble.


      Another French fleet, under Admiral Willaumez, left Brest at the same time with that of Lessigues, bound for the Cape of Good Hope, to assist the Dutch troops in defending it. The British, however, having taken it before his arrival, he went cruising about and picking up such stray British merchantmen as he could meet with between the continents of Africa and South America. He then stood away for the West Indies, hoping to be able to destroy the British shipping in the ports of Barbadoes. Failing in that, he made for Martinique, which was still in the possession of the French. Willaumez had but six sail of the line, and the English admirals, Sir John Borlase Warren, who had the same number and a frigate, and Sir Richard Strachan, who had seven sail of the line and two frigates, were in eager quest of him. Meanwhile, Willaumez was attacked by a terrible tempest, and then chased by Strachan in the Chesapeake. Of his six ships of the line he took home only two, and was obliged to burn the British merchantmen that he had taken.[2] The Old Rgime in Canada.


      Lycians, among whom, according to Grecian writers, women


      The Tobacco Missions ? St. Jean attacked ? Death of Garnier ? The Journey of Chabanel ? His Death ? Garreau and Grelon.