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The Publishers annex the following Extracts of Letters commendatory 
of Gould's Abridgment of Alison's History of Europe. 

From Jas. Kent, ex-Chancellor of the State of New York. 

" The numbers of Alison's History, as they successively appeared, I read with great 
interest. I have now read Mr. Gould's Abridgment, and permit me to say, I think it is 
admirably executed ; it is, indeed, one of the best abridgments I ever saw. The mate 
rial facts are all retained, and stated in strong and perspicuous language ; and Mr. Gould 
has displayed great industry and skill in preserving the substance of so great a history, 
and yet giving it in language of his own." 

From Joseph Story, a Judge of the Supreme Court of the United States. 

*It seems to me an excellent abridgment of Alison's great work, written in a clear 
and chaste style, presenting the narrative in an exact form for the general reader, and 
condensing the facts and materials, so as to bring them within the reach of all classes of 
persons desirous of information of that most interesting period, and justly to command 
their confidence. The work cannot fail to be extensively useful ; for few can command 
the leisure to read Mr. Alison's bulky volumes, even if the expense were no object ; and 
all may, as I believe, profit from an abridgment so completely within the reach of the 
means of the curious and the educated, and whose fidelity may be relied on." 

From Rev. J. M. Matthews, D.D., late Chancellor of the University of N. York. 

" 1 have examined Mr. Gould's Abridgment of Alison's History of Europe, and have 
no hesitation in saying that Mr. G. has performed his task with singular fidelity and 
ability. In abridgments of historical works, the important incidents are often so detached 
from each other, and from their attending circumstances, as to impair the connexion and 
interest of the narrative ; and the spirit and character of the original are sacrificed for the 
sake of brevity. Mr. Gould cannot be charged with this fault. He has infused into his 
Abridgment most of the excellencies which distinguish the History as written by Alison 
him sen ; and has conferred a benefit on our seminaries of learning, by bringing within 
their reach the substance of a work which is acknowledged to be one ol the most 
valuable histories in our language." 

From Col, Stone, Deputy-Superintendent of Common Schools in the city of New 
York, and Editor of the Commercial Advertiser. 

" Mr. Alison's noble work the noblest of modern histories notwithstanding the sur 
prising cheapness and the popular form in which it has been brought out by the Harpers, 
is, nevertheless, by far too voluminous to be universally read by the people. There are 
therefore, thousands and thousands to whom Mr. Gould has rendered a valuable service 
by the present Abridgment. Upon Mr. Gould's book we place a high estimate. Our 
knowledge of his character forbids us L ;uestion its fidelity ; and, having read much of 
his volume, we are free to vouch the clearness and spirit of his narrative, the vigour of 
his style, and the soundness of his principles." 

ENTERED according to Act of Congress, in the year 1844, by 

la th Clerk's Office of the District Court for the Southern District of New York. 











ALISON'S HISTORY OF EUROPE is the most voluminous work of the day ; it 
employed its author twenty-eight years in study and composition; it contains 
more than double the reading matter of Scott's Napoleon, occupies ten large 
octavos, arid fills between eight and nine thousand pages : such a work at what- 
ever price it may be published is sealed to the general reader, as well as to 
colleges, academies, and other seminaries of learning. The editor of this volume 
has therefore undertaken to place before his countrymen, within a compass that 
all may have leisure to read and means to purchase, a condensed account of that 
eventful period which Mr. Alison styles the era of Napoleon. 

With this object in view, the editor has, as he believes, extracted every materia. 
fact from Mr. Alison's work, adding nothing of his own in the way of opinion, 
argument, or assertion, and endeavoring to present the original narrative 
abridged of its repetitions, superfluities, inaccuracies, and inelegancies in the 
spirit of its author : the preservation of Mr. Alison's language, however, is but 
partially attained, as the requisite degree of condensation often rendered that 
impossible. To avoid misapprehension on this point, it may be proper to say that 
every line of this volume has been transcribed by the editor's own hand, and not 
one paragraph is given in the precise words of the original. 

It is not to be supposed that the omissions, in the compilation of this book, 
have been made with unerring judgment ; but on that subject the editor contents 
himself with believing that no two living men would entirely agree as to what 
should be rejected and what retained in such an Abridgment of such a work. 

The campaigns of Wellington in India, which Mr. Alison narrates at great 
length, have been omitted in the Abridgment on account of their entire irrele- 
vancy : the chapter on Britisn Finances is placed at the end of the volume, in 
the form pf an Appendix. 

The chapter on the American War which the editor believes is destined to an 
unenviable notoriety whenever it shall be currently circulated is a tissue of 
misrepresentation; and, as it has no legitimate connexion with the "History of 
Europe," is a gratuitous libel on the people and institutions of the United 
States, and could not be admitted into an American book without alterations 
contradictory to the title-page of this volume it has been wholly omitted. 


There are many faults in Mr. Alison's book, which it is to be hoped he may 
revise for a future edition. Corrections of style cannot, indeed, be expected, for 
such a process would require a re-writing of the entire work ; and, besides, an 
author capable of so many blunders, would almost necessarily be incapable of 
amending them. His constant use of the word whok, as synonymous with aZ/, is 
singularly absurd : " a diplomatic note from the whole sovereigns ;" " the whole 
oldiers retreated;" " he brought the whole guns to the front ;" "the whole houses 
were occupied by marksmen." The word important is reiterated until it forces a 
smile : almost every town, fortress, and post defended or captured throughout the 
whole narrative is designated as an " important " one. The repetition of the same 
word in a sentence is another great fault in Mr. Alison's style : " a large supply 
of mules was obtained to supply the great destruction of those useful animals ;" 
" the first business committed to the Senate and Chamber was the nomination of a 
committee ;" " because a brave nation is not to be regarded as overthrown because 
it has experienced reverses ;" " had no alternative but to submit, even on the hard 
terms of submitting to the cession of Norway ;" " while this bloody conflict was 
going oTi on the steeps above Zadorra on the right ;" " even the generals were 
shaken by the general contagion ;" " obtain for Sweden the support of some foreign 
power able to support its independence ;" " it was owing to the time lost in this 
march and countermarch that the failure of the operation was owing :" these ex- 
amples are but a small portion of what might be quoted. A worse fault than this 
is Mr. Alison's misuse of words : he frequently writes of " a majority of seventy- 
four to five," " a majority of two hundred and twenty-six to thirty ;" " the officers 
and soldiers of the army were the seat of this conspiracy ;" " officials, nominated 
by the crown, who enjoyed their seats only during life ;" " both in the tribune, in 
the Club of Clichy and in the public journals ;" " the stocks rose from forty-five to 
seventy, an advance of twenty-five per cent. ;" " the taxes on the inhabitants were 
raised to two hundred per cent, on their incomes ;" " their respective shares in the 
partition of Europe were chalked out ;" " the Russians and Austrians threw upon 
each other the late disasters ;" " he was believed to be the sole survivor of his fol- 

Mr. Alison frequently falls into magniloquence. Speaking of Napoleon's return 
from Egypt, he says : " Discourses of this sort, in every mouth, threw the public 
into transports, so much the more entrancing as they succeeded a long period of 
disaster ; the joyful intelligence was announced, amid thunders of applause, at all 
the theatres ; patriotic songs again sent forth their heart-stirring strains from the 
orchestra ; and more than one enthusiast expired of joy at the advent of the hero 
who was to terminate the difficulties of the Republic." Referring to the retreat 
of the French army from Germany after the battle of Leipsic, Mr. Alison says : 
" the French eagles bade a final adieu to the German plains, the theatre of their 
glories, of their crimes, and of their punishment." When the British troops 
entered Bordeaux, in 1814, the inhabitants of that town proclaimed Louis XVIII. 
king : Mr. Alison thus comments on the proceeding : " Thus had England the 
glory o '. first of all the allied powers, obtaining an open declaration from a great 
citv in France in favor of their ancient but exiled monarch just twenty year* 


and one month after the contest had begun, from the murder of the best and most 
blameless of their line."(!) After the battle of Malo-Jaroslawitz, Napoleon held 
a council of war, of which Mr. Alison remarks : " An Emperor, two Kings, and 
three Marshals were there assembled : upon their deliberations hung the destinies 
of the world." This Emperor was Napoleon, the two kings were Eugene Beau- 
harnois and Murat, the marshals, Berthier, Bessieres and Davoust ; and the time 
was during the retreat from Moscow, when it was doubtful whether the par. 
ties thus deliberating could force their way through the lines of their enemies. 
In concluding this subject of inaccuracies and inelegancies of style, it may be 
remarked, that the History of Mr. Alison abounds in mis-prints, for which, of 
course, he is not responsible, although their correction is important to the accu- 
racy of the work. Pius VII. is denominated Pius VI. ; Austria is printed for 
Asturia, and again for Cuslrin; Finland for Sweden; Souham for Jourdan; notres 
liberateurs for nos Uberateurs ; 31st for the 30th of April ; and in an indefinite 
number of instances the dates in the marginal notes are erroneous. 

Of the historical inaccuracies of Mr. Alison, it will suffice to designate a few of 
the many instances in which he contradicts himself. In speaking of the events at 
Malo-Jaroslawitz, on the retreat from Moscow, 1812, he says, that was "the/rs* 
time Napoleon ever retired in an open field from his enemies ;" yet at Aspern, in 
1809, after a much more disastrous defeat, Napoleon, he says, " retreated from 
his enemies in an open field." Commenting on the battle of Dresden, August, 
1813, he says the action was memorable from being "the last pitched battle 
Napoleon ever gained ;" yet he tells us that Napoleon won the battle of Hanau, 
October, 1813 ; of Champaubert, February, 1814 ; of Montereau, February, 1814 
which also he styles " the last and not the least brilliant of Napoleon's victo- 
ries ;" and, finally, the battle of Ligny, June, 1815. Relating the arbitrary 
measures of Napoleon to sustain the war and his government, after the battle of 
Leipsic, Mr. Alison says, " a decree was passed by the Senate vesting the nomin- 
ation of President of the Chamber of Deputies in the Emperor, and pi'orogating 
tfie seat of such of the Deputies as had expired, and required to be. filled up anew, so 
as to prevent any new election in the present disturbed state of the public mind.** 
Mr. Alison's meaning in this ill-written sentence is, that the Deputies, whose terms 
of service had expired were made, in the phrase of the present day, to hold over, 
i. e. to continue to occupy their seats; yet, soon after, in referring to tile proceed- 
ing, he says, "notwithstanding the pains which had been taken to secure the 
interest of Napoleon in the Chamber, by granting to him the nomination of its 
President, and the filling up of the vacant seats by the same authority, it soon 
appeared," etc. Here we are told that the old members were kept in office and 
that new members were put into their vacated seats : it is not, indeed, material 
which of the two accounts is the true one, but the contradiction is a serious 
blunder in an elaborate History. Again, speaking of the Charter granted by 
Louis XVIII., after his first restoration, Mr. Alison recites its merits and its faults ; 
in the former enumeration, he says, "prosecution or imprisonment was forbidden, 
except in the cases provided for by law, and according to its forms :" in the latter, he 


says, " no provision was inserted to prevent or restrain arbitrary imprisonment, Of 
limit the period during which a person arrested might be detained before trial-" 

The value of Mr. Alison's work is also greatly impaired by an accumulation of 
useless and uninteresting details ; by repetitions, to the third, fourth and fifth 
time, of the same events ; and by the immethodical arrangement of chapters and 
paragraphs, which places so many things out of the true order of their occurrence, 
that the reader is constantly perplexed as to the chronological bearing of the inci- 
dents upon each other. 

It is unnecessary, though it would be easy, to prolong the perhaps ungracious 
task of pointing out the faults of Mr. Alison's History : the editor has said thus 
much in dispraise of the work, in order to furnish substantial reasons for under- 
taking its abridgment ; whether he has committed errors equal in number and 
consequence to those he has detected, is a matter for the public to decide. 

NEW YORK, October, 1843. 


The Editor takes the occasion presented by the issuing of a Fourth Edition 
of this Abridgment, to express his gratification at the decided success of the 
book ; it has been, so far as he knows, universally approved especially by 
those whose approbation he was most desirous to secure ; and he will add, as 
a proof of its success, that the number of copies sold in the past sixteen months 
exceeds six thousand. 

The present edition, as well as the one that immediately preceded it, is 
furnished with an elaborate series of Questions which, without injuring it for 
libraries, will render it more generally useful in seminaries of learning : 
its value is also increased by the correction of a great number of verbal and 
typographical errors, which existed in the earlier editions, and which, indeed, 
seem to be inseparable from the first publication of a printed book. 

NEW YOHK, March, 1845. 




Importance ot ine subject Causes of the savage character of the French Revo- 
lution Decreasing power of the nobles Philosophy and Literature State 
of the Church Privileges of the nobles Taxation Feudal services Royal 
prerogative Corruption at court Embarrassments of the finances States. 
General Contests between the parties Vacillation of the court National 
Assembly Sitting of June 23rd Concessions of the King Defection of the 
Duke of Orleans Further concessions of the King Consternation. in Paris 
Troops withdrawn to Versailles Tumults in Paris Storming of the Bas- 
tile Spread of the insurrection National Guard, with La Fayette at their 
head, set out for Versailles First tumults there The mob break into the 
Palace Royal family are forced to return to Paris Progress of events 
Measures of the National Assembly Finances Confiscation of the Church 
property Assignats Emigration of the nobles Dissolution of the National 
Assembly: - ......... . 19 



Character of the Legislative Assembly Its parties Its measures Oppression of 
the clergy Declaration of war against Hungary and Bohemia Commence- 
ment of the War Insurrection of the Girondists Proclamation of the allies 
Storming of the Tuileries Imprisonment of the king and his family 
La Fayette 's escape from his army and imprisonment at Olmutz Infernal 
Triumvirate Revolutionary Tribunal General arrest of proscribed persons 
Massacres of the prisoners Reflections on these atrocities Legislative 
Assembly gives place to the National Convention Its parties The Repub- 
lic proclaimed Finances Universal Suffrage Attempt to impeach Robes, 
pierre and Marat Preparations for the trial of Louis XVI. Charges against 
him His previous treatment in prison Appears before the Convention- 
Prepares his Will Trial commences Its result Girondist? Orders for 
the King's Execution Parting with his family His death January 21st, 
1793 His interment Reflections His character : . - 10 18 



Effects of the Revolution on other States Condition of Great Britain Opinions 
Parties Mr. Fox Mr. Pitt Mr. Burke Condition of Austria Prussia 




Russia Sweden Turkey Italy Piedmont Holland Switzerland 
Spain Forces of France Treaty between Sweden and Austria .Death 
of the monarchs of these two countries Francis, Emperor of Austria- 
Efforts of the French to spread their Revolutionary principles Effect of these 
measures in England France declares war against Great Britain : - - 18 24 



tfrench armies take the field Their numbers Numbers of the allies Invasion 
of Flanders Ease with which it was repelled Effect of the defeat in Paris 
King of Prussia joins the, army Allies invade France Their success 
Their inactivity Defeat of Dumourier Negotiations with Dumourier Re- 
treat of the allies Renewed attempt on Flanders Operations in Alsace and 
the Low Countries And in Flanders Battle of Jemappes Victory of the 
French Effects of Revolution in Flanders French reverses on the Upper 
Rhine Close of the campaign :--.-... 24 3fr 



Difficulties in Paris Revolutionary Tribunal Trial of Marat Efforts of the 
Girondists Commission of Twelve Disturbance in the Convention In- 
surrection of the Club of Cordeliers. Defeat of the Girondists in the 
Convention Renewal of the insurrection Military preparations Second 
defeat of the Girondists Their arrest and dissolution Jacobins in power 
Opinions and revolts throughout France Committee of Public Safety 
Law of suspected persons Revolutionary Committees Change of the Cal- 
endar Assassination of Marat Proscription of the Girondists Death of 
the young Prince, Louis XVII. Death of Marie Antoinette, Oct6ber 16th, 
1793 Violation of the Royal sepulchres in France Abjuration of Chris- 
tianity Worship of Reason Effects of these measures Proscription and 
Execution of Bailly, Custine, the Duke of Orleans, Desmoulins and Danton 
Dictatorship of Robespierre Massacres throughout France Reaction of "^ 
feeling in Paris Accusation of Robespierre His arrest His execution 
Close of the Reign of Terror : 3038 



Description of La Vende'e Its inhabitants Commencement of hostilities 
Leaders Orders of the Convention Bravery and great success of the Roy- 
aHsta Their prisoners Continued success of theVende'ans Advance upon 
Nantes Republicans gain some success but are at length totally defeated 
Renewed efforts of the Convention on a large scale Devastation of La Ven- 
de'e Alternate success of each party Continued victories of the Ven- 
deans unavailing Cessation of hostilities War of extermination com- 
menced by order of the Convention Atrocious cruelties of Carrier : - 39 44 





Alliance of the European powers against France Their want of union Insubor- 
dination of the French troops French Finances Commencement of the 
campaign Siege of Maestricht Defeat of the French Dumourier takes 
command Battle of Nerwinde and defeat of the French Negotiations be- 
tween the allies and Dumourier, and Dumourier's flight Congress at Ant. 
werp Vigorous measures of the Convention Disasters of the French on the 
northern frontier Operations on the Flemish frontier Proximity of the 
allies to Paris Military preparations in France Carnot General discom- 
fiture of the allies, and subsequent reverses of the French Siege of Muu. 
beuge commenced Jourdan takes command and raises the siege Moreau 
attacks the Prussians at Permasin and at Weissenberg, and is defeated 
Fate of Strasburg Secession of Prussia Operations before Landau 
Campaigns on the Spanish frontier Campaign in the maritime Alps Cap- 
ture of Lyons and massacre of the Royalists Toulon Its defences Its 
investment Progress of the siege Evacuation of Toulon Distress and 
escape of the inhabitants Destruction of the French fleet Massacre of 
the citizens : 



French navy French and British ships of war Success of the British fleets in 
the West Indies And in the Mediterranean The Channel fleet under Lord 
Howe encounters the French under Admiral Joyeuse Victory of the British 
commander Effects of this victory Allied plan of Campaign Forces on 
both sides The allies underrate the power of Revolutionary France Alter, 
nation of success Operations of Jourdan Movements in West Flanders 
Defection of Austria Success of the allies Battle of Fleurus Operations 
on the Rhine In Piedmont and Nice Campaign on the Spanish frontier 
Jourdan and Kleber assume the offensive in the north Winter campaign 
Subjugation of Holland Capture of the Dutch fleet : . 5561 



Kingdom of Poland Primitive and savage character of the former government 
Clergy Nobility Peasantry Power of the King John Sobieski 
Factions after his death First partition of Poland Second partition Resis- 
tance of the Poles Kosciusko His success Insurrection in Warsaw 
Provisional government established Defeat of Kosciusko Siege of War- 
8aw The siege is raised Second siege of Warsaw Its capture Termina- 
tion of the Polish Republic Reflections : ..... 61 *6 



Parties in Paris after the fall of Robespierre Humane measures of the Conven- 
tion Club of La Jeunesse Dore*e Repeal of the Revolutionary laws, and 




impeachment of the Jacobin leaders Insurrection of the Fauxbourgs 
Firmness of the Convention Their success Execution of Jacobin prisoners 
The Convention form a new Constitution Remarks on this Constitution 
It is opposed The Convention appeal to the army They appoint Napo- 
leon Bonaparte to the command Victory of Bonaparte over the insurgents 

Secession of European powers from the alliance, but Austria and England 
unite, nevertheless French naval preparations Campaign in the maritime 
Alps Position of the armies on the northern and eastern frontier Jourdan's 
operations and defeat on the Rhine Expedition to Quiberon Bay Defeat 
of the Royalists Republican atrocities Capture of the Cape of Good 
Hope: 6673 



Bonaparte's plan of campaign in Italy His marriage with Josephine Condition 
of the French army And of the allies Action at Montenotte Great sue- 
cess of Napoleon His alliance with Sardinia He follows up his success- 
Battle of Lodi His entry into Milan and military exactions Vacillation of 
Venice Continued success Siege of Mantua Advance of Wurmser 
Defeat of Massena Napoleon raises the siege of Mantua Defeat of the 
Austrians at Lonato and Salo Personal danger of Napoleon Battle of 
Medola Wurmser divides his forces And advances upon Mantua Action 
of Caldiero And of Arcola Battle of Rivoli Reflections on this cam. 
paign Civil war in La Vende'e Condition of England Disturbances in 
London Debate on the war Proposals for peace Relative position of 
forces on the Upper and Lower Rhine Opening of the campaign Opera- 
tions in the mountains and passes of the Black Forest Discomfiture of Mo- 
reau Great disasters of the French Moreau retreats through the Black 
Forest Continued defeats of the French Siege and capture of Kehl 
Treaty between France and Spain Ireland French naval armament des- 
tined for Ireland Death of the Empress Catherine Resignation of General 
Washington: 74 86 



Affairs in England Suspension of specie payments in Great Britain Limita. 
tion of the Bill decreeing the suspension Supplies for the year Con. 
spiracy in the British Navy Mutiny at the Nore Operations of the 
hostile fleets Action off Cape St. Vincent Battle of Camperdown 
Effect of these victories Death of Mr. Burke Defection of Russia 
Armies in Italy Battle of Tagliamento Napoleon, after many minor 
actions, forces his way across the Alps to the Austrian frontier Armis- 
tice of Leoben Treaty of Judemberg Partition of the Venetian territo- 
ries Venice Revolutionary principles in Venice Insurrection in the 
Venetian provinces Effects of these movements Napoleon declares war 
against Venice Capture of Venice Its spoliation Operations on the 
Rhine Prussia Genoa Napoleon at Montebello Domestic affairs of 
France Dissensions between the Royalists and Jacobins Measures of 
the Directory Their victory Its results : 86 97 





Napoleon returns to Paris Naval preparations Precautions of the British gov- 
ernment French fleet sails from Toulon Nelson pursues Napoleon ar- 
rives in Egypt, captures Alexandria and advances to Cairo Battle of the 
Pyramids Nelson arrives at Aboukir Battle of the Nile Honors con- 
ferred on Nelson Effects of this victory Napoleon's expedition to Syria 
Capture of Jaffa and massacre of prisoners Advance to Acre British 
squadron, under Sir Sidney Smith, arrives there Napoleon attacks the 
place Arrival of the Ottoman fleet Napoleon retreats Defeats the Turks 
at Aboukir: 97 103 



Measures for the defence of England Progress of Revolution in Holland^and 
in Switzerland The Swiss fly to arms Success of the French in the larger 
Cantons and of the Swiss in the mountains Sufferings of the Swiss 
Their final defeat The Ecclesiastical States are next attacked Outbreak 
at Rome France declares war against Rome Violence to the Pope and 
his death Pillage of Rome Cis- Alpine Republic Humiliation of the King 
of Sardinia Revolutionary proceedings at Naples Defeat of the Neapoli- 
tan troops Flight of the Neapolitan Court Championnet advances to Na- 
ples Desperate battle there Disturbance in Ireland Plan of the Insur- 
rection Measures of the opposite party And of the Government Progress 
of the Insurrection France and the United States Controversy between 
them Hanse Towns Effects of French aggression : 102 114 



Preparations of Austria of Russia of Great Britain French forces Jourdan 
opens the campaign His defeats Impolitic measures of the Aulic Coun- 
cil Campaign in Italy Effect of defeat on the Republicans there Massena 
takes command The Arch-Duke Charles attacks him Massena's defeat 
Suwarrow Operations of Moreau in Italy Suwarrow's great success 
Naples Junction of Moreau and Macdonald Suwarrow defeats Macdo. 
nald Fall of Turin King of Naples resumes the throne Punishment of 
the insurgents Capitulation of Mantua and of Alexandria Battle of Novi 
Continued errors of the Aulic Council Disasters to which it leads Sur- 
render of Zurich Achievements of Suwarrow His retreat through the 
Mountains Effects on the allies of these disasters Expedition to Holland 
Its first success and eventual defeat Battle of Coni Surrender of that 
town Close of the campaign : ....... 114 126 



Progress of the Revolution in Trance Elections Conspiracy of Sieyes Napo- 
leon abandons his army in Egypt His return to France His residence in 



Paris Conspiracy to place the government in his hands Council of Five 
Hundred resolve to remove to St. Cloud Their proceedings there Vio. 
lent measures in both Councils Napoleon disperses the members by force, 
and takes command of the Government His proposals for Peace to (Jrcut 
Britain Debate in Parliament Domestic transactions of Great Britain 
Rupture between England and Russia Measures of Austria to con. 
tinue the war And of Napoleon Napoleon's ambitious projects and 
measures: ............ 12Q 132 



Austrian forces French forces Opening of the campaign Battle of Engen 
Battle of Moeskirch Action at Biberach Position of the Austrians Ac- 
tive operations on both sides Campaign of Italy French disasters there 
Siege and capture of Genoa Napoleon crosses the Alps by the Great St. 
Bernard His progress in Italy His entrance into Milan He defeats the 
Austrians Critical position of Melas Battle of Marengo Victory of the 
French Its results: ......... 133 141 



Treaty between Great Britain and Austria Austria temporizes with France 
Novel proposal of Napoleon to Great Britain Negotiations for peace Na- 
poleon's obstinacy breaks off the negotiations Plot to assassinate Napoleon 
French and Austrian forces Capture of Malta by the English Accession 
of Pius VII. Renewal of hostilities Moreau's operations in Germany 
Battle of Hohenlinden Retreat and disaster of the Austrians Arch-Duke 
Charles takes command of the army Solicits and obtains an armistice 
Macdonald's march across the Alps by the Splugen He advances into Italy 
Armistice of Treviso Treaty between France and Naples Treaty of 
Luneville : . 141 148 



Difficulties between Great Britain and Denmark British fleet proceeds to Co- 
penhagen Treaty with Denmark Arbitrary measures of Russia Mari- 
time Confederacy against Great Britain Retaliatory measures of Great 
Britain Embarrassments of the English ministry Mr. Pitt resigns His 
successors pursue his policy Sir Hyde Parker sails to Copenhagen Battle 
of Copenhagen Victory of the British Occupation of Hanover by the 
Prussians Death of the Emperor Paul Accession of Alexander His 
measures and policy Treaty between Russia and Great Britain Dissolu. 
tion of the Confederacy : ... 148 154 





Advance of the Turkish army toward Egypt Negotiations for peace frustrated 
by the British Defeat of the Turks Expedition of Sir R. Abercromby 
Battle of Alexandria British take possession of Cairo Surrender of the 
French army Attempts of Napoleon to regain Egypt Naval action be- 
tween the British and French Treaty between France and Spain Pre- 
parations of Napoleon for invading England French treaties with Turkey, 
Bavaria, America, Algiers, and Russia Effects of the peace Ambitious 
projects of Napoleon Expedition to St. Domingo Its first success and fi- 
nal defeat Condition of St. Domingo Napoleon's aggressions in Europe 
Re volution in Holland And in the Cis- Alpine Republic Prosperity of Great 
Britain Causes of irritation between England and France Mutual recrim- 
inations Extraordinary scene with Lord Whitworth at the Tuileries Eng- 
land declares war Imprisonment of British travellers in France : - 155 164 



Condition of France when Napoleon seized the reins of power Necessity for a 
despotic government Napoleon's measures against the Jacobins He estab- 
lishes the Legion of Honor Reestablishes the Catholic religion Amnesty 
in favor of exiles and emigrants Changes in the Constitution Proposals 
to Louis XVIII. Civil Code of Napoleon Law of succession Confisca- 
tion of property the great sin of the Revolution Napoleon's flattering pros- 
pects Moreau Royalist conspiracy of Pichegru Arrest of the Duke d'- 
Enghein His trial and execution, March 21st, 1804 Consternation in Paris 
when this murder was known Murder of Pichegru And of Wright Trial 
of Moreau He embarks for America Napoleon assumes the Imperial 
Crown: - - 164173 



Preparation for war Commencement of hostilities Renewed preparations of 
Napoleon for the invasion of England And of England for repelling it 
Insurrection in Ireland Naval operations Illness of the King Mr. Pitt 
recalled to the ministry Condition of Austria Of Prussia Of Russia 
Impression produced in Europe by the murder of the Duke d' Enghein 
Coronation of Napoleon and Josephine Rupture between Spain and Great 
Britain The former power declares war against the latter : . . 173 IT 



Napoleon's journey to Italy Treaty between Great Britain and Russia Napo- 
leon assembles his army and flotilla at Boulogne for the invasion of England. 


Forces for the expedition The French Admiral, Villeneuve, puts to sea 
Nelson sails in pursuit Movements of the hostile fleets Action of Sir 
Robert Calder, off Ferrol Its important results Napleon abandons the 
project of Invasion and moves his troops to the Rhine Relative forces of 
France and the allies Nelson sails for Cadiz Battle of Trafalgar Results 
of the battle Death of Nelson Honors to his memory Napoleon's ope- 
rations on the Rhine He violates the Prussian neutrality Indignation of 
Prussia Defeat of Auffemberg Combat at Elchingen Archduke Ferdi- 
nand cuts his way through the French lines Entire Austrian army under 
Mack surrenders to Napoleon Campaign in Italy Battle of Verona And 
of Caldiero Austrians retreat Napoleon traverses Bavaria Russians, 
Austrians and French approach Vienna Convention between Russia and 
Prussia Success of Ney and Augereau in the Tyrol Proposals of Austria 
for an Armistice Movements around St. Polten Kutusoff retreats Com. 
bat with Mortier Lannes and Murat advance upon Vienna The Emperor 
Francis evacuates his Capital Napoleon occupies Vienna Junction of the 
Russian and Austrian armies Preparations on both sides for a general ac- 
tion The Battle of Austerlitz Its results Armistice of Austerlitz Prussia 
recedes from the Convention with Russia And joins Napoleon Treaty of 
Presburg Spoliation of Naples Death of Mr. Pitt : - - . 179 194 



Condition of Europe New ministry in England Mr. Fox, Prime Minister 
French Finances Occupation of Naples by the French Insurrection in 
Calabria Battle of Maida Louis Bonaparte made King of Holland 
French naval defeats Differences between Great Britain and the United 
States of America Position of Prussia Hostilities between England and 
Prussia Napoleon's exactions Confederation of the Rhine Irritation of 
Prussia Treaties of Russia and Great Britain with Prussia Imprudence of 
. Prussia Napoleon invades Prussia Manoeuvres of the two armies Battle 
of Jena Battle of Auerstadt Great results of these battles Entire over- 
throw of Prussia Napoleon enters Berlin His cruelty there Contribu- 
tions levied on the conquered provinces Napoleon moves to the Vistula : 194 205 



Russian forces Russia applies to England Impolitic and unjust course of the 
British government The armies approach each other Napoleon goes to 
Warsaw Commencement of hostilities Battle of Pultusk Its result- 
The armies go into winter-quarters Hostilities renewed Russians retrea* 
to Prussich-Eylau Battle of Prussich-Eylau Its result Napoleon retreats 
Affairs of Turkey Turkey declares war against Great Britain Attach 
on Constantinople Change of ministry in Great Britain : - - 203 213 



Commencement of the campaign Siege and capture of Dantzic Foice? of the 
two Nations Russians defeat Ney at Guttstadt Russians retire to Heils- 
berg French attack and are repulsed Russians eventually retreat to Fried. 



tand Battle of Friedland Proposals for Peace Napoleon and Alexander 
confer at Tilsit Treaty between France and Russia And with Prussia 
Secret articles of the Treaty of Tilsit : 213218 



Napoleon's hostility toward Great Britain The Continental System Berlin 
D ecree Measures of Great Britain Milan Decree Singular result of these 
measures Enthusiasm and adulation of the Parisians on Napoleon's return 
to the Capital Suppression of the Tribunate And other despotic measures 
Proscriptions Internal prosperity of France Penal Code Its atrocious 
severity Conscriptions Political changes in Central Europe Internal af- 
fairs of Prussia Austria Sweden Designs of Russia and France on the 
fleets of Denmark and Portugal England anticipates their movements and 
takes possession of the Danish ships Negotiations with England Turkey 
breaks from her alliance with France Napoleon's proceedings in Italy His 
encroachments in Western Europe : 218 228 



Differences between France and Spain Napoleon discovers the hostile intentions 
of Spain and Portugal He resolves to subjugate the Peninsula Commences 
hostilities in and against Portugal Junot advances to Lisbon The Portu- 
guese Royal Family embark for Brazil Junot occupies Lisbon His govern- 
mentAffairs of Spain Treaty of Fontainebleau Invasion of Spain The 
King, Charles IV. attempts to escape to America Is prevented He resigns 
his crown in favor of his son, Ferdinand VII. French troops approach Madrid 
Murat takes possession of the Spanish Capital Political intrigues between 
Chales IV., Ferdinand, and Napoleon By the representations of Savary, 
Charles, Ferdinand, and the Spanish Royal Family are induced to travel to 
Bayonne to meet Napoleon Murat's misgovernment in Madrid Insurrec- 
tion and massacre of the inhabitants Effects of these atrocities Napoleon's 
duplicity toward the Spanish Royal Family Charles executes a second ab- 
dication Ferdinand is forced to a similar measure Joseph Bonaparte 
declared King of Spain Napoleon's Constitution for Spain Joseph's 
Ministry: 228 238- 



The Spanish Peninsula Forces destined to take part in the Peninsular war- 
Revolts and massacres throughout Spain Success of the French troops 
First siege of Saragossa Siege of Valencia Defeat of the Spaniards under 
Blake and Cuesta Atrocities of the French soldiers in Rio Seco and Cor- 
dova French retreat from the latter place Their total defeat Indignation 
of Napoleon at Dupont's surrender Joseph evacuates Madrid Reverses of 
the French Arrival of Wellington in Portugal He defeats the French 
under Laborde and Junot An Armistice is concluded and the French 


evacuate Portugal Sir John Moore arrives at Lisbon And marches into 

Spain Movements of Austria Interview between Alexander and Napoleon 
at Erfurth Murat made King of Naples Napoleon's preparations to invade 
Spain His great success against the Spanish forces He advances to Madrid 
Its capture Sir David Baird lands at Corunna and joins Sir John Moore 
Advance and retreat of the British army Sir John Moore continues his 
retreat toward Corunna Battle of Corunna Death of Moore : - 239 252 



M^sures of Austria during the peace Position of the French and Austrian 
forces Napoleon's instructions to Berthier Napoleon takes command 
Action at Thaun Subsequent discomfiture of the Austrians The Arch, 
duke captures Ratisbon Combat at Landshut And at Ratisbon Battle of 
Echmul The Archduke retreats: Napoleon retakes Ratisbon Results of 
the campaign, thus far Reverses of the French in other quarters Hiller 
takes post at Ebersberg Massena attacks and defeats him Napoleon ad- 
vances to Vienna and takes possession of that city The Archduke Charles 
approaches Vienna Position of the two armies Battle of Aspern Napo- 
leon retreats to Lobau and intrenches himself there : 253 262 



Ntpoleon prepares to cross the Danube Position of the Archduke The 
French cross the river And the Austrians retire to Wagram Description 
of Wagram Battle of Wagram The Archduke retreats to Bohemia Na- 
poleon grants an Armistice Treaty of Vienna Napoleon destroys the 
ramparts of Vienna Operations in the Tyrol Great success of the Tyro- 
lese Treaty with them Execution of Hofer Expedition of the British 
against Antwerp Their partial success and retreat Dissensions between 
the Pope and Napoleon The former is made prisoner and conveyed to 
France: - 263 273 



British Naval expedition to Basque Roads Its success Success of the British 
in the East and West Indies Portugal Spain Forces of the Spaniards 
And of the French Opening of the campaign Second siege of Saragossa 
Its capture Pillage by Lannes and Junot Disasters following the fall of 
Saragossa Siege and capture of Gerona Success of Victor in Central 
Spain Soult invades Portugal And captures Oporto Wellington arrives 
at Lisbon Marches against Oporto and retakes it Soult's perilous retreat 
Wellington advances toward Madrid Battle of Talavera Wellington, 
unsupported by the Spaniards, resolves to retire to the banks of the Tagus 
Ungenerous apathy of the Spaniards in their own cause Wellington remon- 
strates And abandons them to their own resources Battle of Ocana Wel- 
lington's system of maintaining his troops And Napoleon's - 274285 





Napoleon's position His want of an heir Offers of his hand Makes known 
his intentions to Josephine Her dignified conduct Her divorce Nego- 
tiations with Austria Marriage of Napoleon and Marie Louise Russia 
takes umbrage Napoleon's measures force the King of Holland to abdi- 
cate His differences with Lucien And with Joseph Soult commences 
operations in Spain Siege of Cadiz French and allied forces in Portugal 
Massena captures Ciudad Rodrig'o and Almeida Wellington falls back 
to Busaco Battle of Busaco Wellington retires to Torres Vedras Mas. 
sena retreats Soult captures Badajoz Wellington pursues Massena 
Action of Barrosa Massena withdraws from Portugal Battle of Fuentes 
d' Onoro Illness of George III. Prince of Wales made Regent Ex- 
change of prisoners Capture of the Island of Java : 285 293 



The Cortes assemble at Cadiz Their democratic measures Joseph Bonaparte 
enters Seville Napoleon's projects Joseph resigns his crown, but is per- 
suaded to take it again Operations in the East of Spain Capture of Tor- 
tosa And of Figueras Burning of Manresa Siege of Taragona Its cap- 
ture Siege and capture of Saguntum And of Valencia Beresford lays 
eiege to Badajoz Battle of Albuera Retreat of Soult Wellington recom- 
mences the siege of Badajoz, but the approach of Soult and Marmont forces 
him to relinquish it : 293300 



Wellington lays siege to Ciudad Rodrigo Captures it Siege and capture of 
Badajoz Effects of these two victories Wellington advances into Spain 
Enters Salamanca Battle of Salamanca Wellington marches to Madrid 
His entrance into that city He captures the park of French artillery at the 
Retire Aspect of French affairs in the Peninsula Effects of the concen- 
tration of the French forces Wellington lays siege to Burgos And aban- 
dons it He retreats to Ciudad Rodrigo : 301 307 



Preparations of Russia for war in Turkey Success of the Russian troops Siege 
of Schumla undertaken Repulse of the storming party Similar operations 
at Rondschouck Defeat of the Turks near Battin Capture of Rond 


schouck and Nicopolis Turks defeated at Rondschouck They cross the 
Danube and attack Kutusoff Their total defeat Peace between Russia and 
Turkey Encroachments of Russia upon the Swedish dominions Gusta- 
vus, King of Sweden, resigns his crown New king and change of policy in 
Sweden Death of the Crown-Prince Bernadotte is appointed to succeed 
him Napoleon's further spoliations in Europe Resented by Alexander 
Birth of Napoleon's son Napoleon's measures force Sweden to declare 
war against England The French invade the Swedish territories Sweden, 
Great Britain and Russia declare war against France : 307 312 



Immense preparations of Napoleon for invading Russia Forces of Russia 
French troops cross the Niemen Sufferings of the French before hostilities 
commenced Barclay retires from Wilna, and the French occupy it 
French advance to Witepsk Alexander leaves the army at Potolsk and 
proceeds to Moscow, and thence to St. Petersburg Oudinot defeated on 
the Dwina Barclay and Bagrathion form a junction at Smolensko Heroic 
defence of General Newerofskoi Russians evacuate Smolensko, leaving a 
rear-guard for its protection Napoleon attacks the town Is repulsed 
Conflagration of Smolensko The Russians abandon it Napoleon pursues 
Battle at Valentina Miserable condition of the French army Move- 
ments of Victor and Augereau Russians resolve to give battle to Napo- 
leon Take post at Borodino Battle of Borodino Russians fall back 
toward Moscow And abandon it French arrive at Moscow on the 14th 
of September Conflagration of Moscow Kutusoff threatens Napoleon's 
communications : ......... 313 322 



Napoleon proposes an Armistice Sufferings of his troops Condition of the Rus- 
sian army Napoleon prepares to retreat Evacuates Moscow and retreats 
to Malo- Jaroslawitz Is nearly made prisoner Council of War held He 
continues his retreat Its disastrous character Severity of the weather 
Arrival at Smolensko Continued retreat Defeat of the French at Krasnoi 
Heroic defence of Ney His escape Napoleon arrives at Orcha Battle 
of Beresina Its result Napoleon sets out for Paris Condition of the troops 
after his departure The army reaches Wilna And are forced to abandon 
it Heroism of Ney Result of the campaign : 322332 



Napoleon arrives at Paris Public depression Relieved by Napoleon's firmness 
Malet's extraordinary Conspiracy Its defeat Napoleon's discontent, 
notwithstanding His efforts to recruit the army Negotiations with the 
Pope: - 332335 




Combination of forces to cut off the retreat of the French army Murat deserts 
the army and repairs to Naples Eugene takes command Deliverance and 
policy of Prussia Her efforts to regain a footing among the Powers of 
Europe Treaty with Russia Insurrection in Saxony Institution of the 
Order of the Iron Cross in Prussia The Tugenbund Position of the French 
troops on the Elbe Forces of Prussia Of Russia The allies occupy 
Hamburg Insurrections in the Hanse Towns The allies approach the Elbe 
and occupy Dresden Napoleon joins the army Battle of Lutzen Allies 
retire to Dresden and Bautzen Napoleon takes possession of Dresden 
Negotiations with Russia and Austria Battle of Bautzen Armistice of 
Pleswitz: . .... . 335346 



Measures of the British Cabinet Treaty between Great Britain, Russia, and 
Prussia Scarcity of specie in Europe Treaty of Napoleon with Denmark 

Policy of Austria Negotiations for Peace Interview between Metier- 
nich and Napoleon Convention agreed on News of the battle of Vittoria 
in Spain Austria decides in favor of the Grand Alliance Preparations and 
forces on both sides Congress at Prague General Moreau joins the allies 

Schwartzenberg appointed ox>mmander-in-chief : ... 346 353 



Blucher opens the campaign Allies advance upon Dresden- They attack the 
town and are repulsed Battle of Dresden Death of Moreau Allies re- 
treat French defeated at Toeplitz Disasters of Macdonald in Upper Silesia 

And of Oudinot north of the Elbe Napoleon's operations at Dresden and 
in Silesia Ney encounters Bernadotte at Dennewitz and is defeated Dis- 
couragement of Napoleon and his troops The Cossacks make a descent 
into Westphalia Capture Cassel and retire with Jerome's treasures Ben- 
ningsen arrives at Toeplitz Napoleon advances to Duben Retreats to 
Leipsic Description of Leipsic Disposition of the French troops And of 
the allies Commencement of the battle of Leipsic Result of the first day 

Napoleon's interview with Meerfeldt Battle of Leipsic renewed Its re. 
suit Retreat of Napoleon Disasters of his retreat He reaches Erfurth, 
where Murat abandons him Continued retreat Secession of Bavaria 
Battle of Hanau Napoleon crosses the Rhine The allies enter Frankfort 

Bernadotte advances to Cassel Capitulation of Dresden Effect in Eu- 

rope of Napoleon's defeat : ........ 353368 



Improved condition of the British army in the Peninsula Measures of the Cortes 

Condition of Cadiz Wellington's forces and plans French forces Bat. 



tie of Castella Wellington takes leave of Portugal He advances to Vit- 
toria Joseph's retreat Battle of Vittoria Great amount of spoil taken 
from the French Soult takes command of the French army Assumes the 
offensive Battle of Sauroren Retreat of Soult Siege and capture of St. 
Sebastian Soult retreats over the Bidassoa Dishonorable conduct of the 
Spanish government toward their allies Wellington prepares to invade 
France He attacks and defeats Soult His regulations for protecting the 
inhabitants from the rapacity of his troops Soult's position on the Ni- 
velle He is again defeated by Wellington He retreats to Bayonne 
His embarrassments He is again defeated, and Wellington blockades 
Bayonne: ... . 369379 



Results of the Campaign of 1813 Its effect in France NapoleorPs measures for 
defence Discontent of the French people Suffering in the army Govern, 
ment of Marie Louise, as Regent Immense Conscriptions Frontier for- 
tresses Domestic distress in France Prosperity of England Proposals of 
peace by the allied Sovereigns Napoleon negotiates to gain time Re- 
solute conduct of the Chamber of Deputies Napoleon dissolves the Cham- 
ber Treaty of Valenay Conferences with Pius VII. Murat joins the 
allies Eugene Beauharnois proposes to join them Denmark abandons 
Napoleon Proceedings at Frankfort Accession of Switzerland to the Alii- 
ance Forces of the allies And of Napoleon:. - . - - 376 388 



Invasion of France Napoleon takes leave of his wife and son to join the army 
Battle of Brienne Napoleon retreats to Troyes The allies divide their 
forces Battle of Champaubert Discomfiture of Blucher Retrospect of the 
fortunes of the Bourbons since the Revolution The allies occupy Troyes 
Movements of the allies Measures of Napoleon to protect Paris Battle 
of Montereau Congress of Chatillon Detail of its proceedings Napoleon 
refuses peace His ambitious views Treaty of Chaumont Blucher's move, 
ments Battle of Bar-sur-Aube Action at La Guillotiere Blucher's dan. 
gerous position at Soissons He is relieved by the surrender of that town 
Napoleon follows and attacks him Battle of Craon Russians retreat to 
Laon Defeat of Marmont Battle of Laon Napoleon retreats to Soissons 
Capture and recapture of Chalons : ..... 389404 



Brief suspension of hostilities Napoleon's affairs in other parts of his Empir 
Holland South Beveland Antwerp Flanders Italy Lyons Welling, 
ton resumes the offensive Crosses the Adour Soult retreats to Orthes 
Battle of Orthes and defeat of Soult Events in Bordeaux Beresford enters 
that town Wellington de r eats Soult at Toulouse Napoleon's embarrass- 



merits Napoleon marches against Schwartzenberg Battle of Arcis-sur- 
Aube Retreat of Napoleon Arrives at Vitry Proceeds to St. Dizier 
Discontent of his officers His dispatches intercepted by the allies 
Schwartzenberg and Blucher march toward Fere-Champenoise Battle at 
that place Defeat of General Pacthod The allies hasten toward Paris 
Consternation of the citizens the Empress and her son leave Paris De- 
scription of Paris Its means of defence Commencement of the Battle of 
Paris Defeat of the French and surrender of the Capital Napoleon re- 
turns toward Paris His excitement when he hears of its capitulation 
Terms of the capitulation The allies enter Paris Meeting at the hotel of 
Talleyrand Napoleon denounced Address to the people of Paris Pro- 
visiona. government organized Noble conduct of Alexander The Senate 
dethrone Napoleon The army declares for the Bourbons Napoleon at 
Fontainebleau He abdicates the throne Treaty with the allies He takes 
leave of his troops and departs for Elba Death of Josephine Louis XVIII. 
leaves England for France His entrance into Paris Treaty of Paris Lib- 
eration of the Pope : - - " 405423 



Enthusiasm in England on the declaration of peace Measures in Parliament 
Affairs of Norway Bernadotte invades Norway Norway submits and is 
annexed to Sweden British Corn Laws Difficulties of Louis XVIII. 
His impolitic measures His Charter Its defects Discontent of the peo. 
pie Penury of the government Errors of the ministers And of the Bour- 
bons Civil regulations General exasperation : 424 432 



Members of the Congress of Vienna Difficulties Measures Rumor of Napo- 
leon's escape from Elba Spirited conduct of the Congress when Napoleon's 
escape is ascertained Their Declaration Napoleon in Elba His escape 
and arrival in France His success with the Troops Enters Grenoble 
Intelligence of his landing and progress reaches Paris Consternation there 
Efforts of the Government to check him Nev's treason And that of 
the army generally Appeal of Louis XVIII. He ie treats from Paris with 
the Royal Family Napoleon arrives at Fontainebleau And at Paris His 
reflections in the Tuileries His government and ministers Resistance to 
his authority in some of the Provinces New treaty of the Allied Powers 
Forces preparing to invade France Napoleon's efforts for defence 
Fouche's intrigues New Constitution Acte A.dditionel Outbreaks of the 
popular feeling Caulaincourt endeavors to negotiate with the allies 
Murat commences hostilities Contest in La Vendee" New Elections 
Divisions in Paris Napoleon discovers^Fouche's treachery Dares not pun- 
ish him Forces of Wellington And of Blucher And of Napoleon 
Soult takes command Napoleon sets out for the army Secret intelli- 
gence communicated to Wellington by Fouchd Fouche's unparalleled du- 
plicity Napoleon crosses the frontier Battle of Ligny And of Quatre- 
B ras Blucher retreats to Wavre -Wellington falls back to Waterloo The 
Field of Waterloo THE BATTLE OF WATERLOO Defeat of the French- 



Flight of Napoleon Grouchy retreats to Laon Losses in the Battle Na- 
poleon arrives at Paris Is denounced by the Chamber of Deputies He 
abdicates the crown Chamber of Peers Advance of the allies Capitu- 
lation of Paris Napoleon escapes to Rochefort Embarks on board the 
Bellerophon Surrenders himself to the British government His letter to 
the Prince Regent He is sent to St. Helena Violence of the Prussians in 
Paris and its environs Restoration of the works of art that were taken by 
Napoleon from the European powers Treaty of Paris Proscription of 
traitors Execution of Ney And of Murat Napoleon in St. Helena His 
death and burial Changes in the French government Napoleon's remains 
removed from St. Helena to France, and interred in the Church of the In- 
valides: ... 433461 

Appendix, 463 

Questions, .... ...... 495 




FEW periods of the world's history can be compared, in interest and 
importance, to that which embraces the origin and progress of the French 
Revolution ; for, in no previous age were events of such magnitude 
crowded together, nor were questions of such moment ever before arbi- 
trated between contending nations. Hereafter, the era of Napoleon will 
doubtless be ranked with the eras of Pericles, Hannibal and the Crusades. 

The extraordinary character of this Revolution must not be attributed 
to any peculiarities in the disposition of the French people, or to any faults 
peculiar to their government, but rather to the weight of despotism which 
preceded, and the prodigious changes which were destined to follow it. 
It was distinguished by violence and stained with blood, because it origin- 
ated chiefly with the laboring classes, and partook of the savage features 
of a servile revolt ; it subverted the institutions of the country, because it 
condensed within a few years the changes which should have taken place 
in as many centuries ; it speedily fell under the direction of the most 
depraved inhabitants, because its guidance was early abandoned by the 
higher to the lower orders ; and it led to a general spoliation of property, 
because its basis was an insurrection of the poor against the rich. France 
would have done less at the Revolution, if she had done more before it ; 
she would not so mercilessly have Vielded the sword to govern, if she 
had not so long been governed by the sword ; nor would she have sunk 
for years under the guillotine of the populace, had she not first groaned 
for centuries under the fetters of the nobility. 

For a hundred and fifty years before the Revolution, France had en- 
joyed the blessings of domestic tranquillity, and, during this interval of 
peace, the relative situation and feelings of the different ranks in society 
underwent a total change. Wealth was silently accumulated by the 
lower orders, while power imperceptibly glided from the higher, in con- 
sequence of the dissipation of their revenues on objects of luxury. When 
civil dissensions again broke out, this difference appeared in the most 
striking manner. It was no longer the territorial noblesse, headed by 
their respective lords, who took the field ; or the burghers of towns, who 
maintained insulated contests for the defence of their walls: but the 


National Guard who everywhere flew to arms, animated by one common 
feeling and strong in the consciousness of mutual support. They did not 
wait for their landlords to lead, or their magistrates to direct ; but, acting 
boldly for themselves, asserted the cause of democratic freedom against 
the powers they had hitherto been accustomed to obey. 

In the philosophical speculations of the eighteenth century, hazarded 
by Voltaire, Rousseau, Raynal and the Encyclopaedists, the most unre- 
served discussion on political subjects took place ; and, by a singular 
blindness, the constituted authorities made no attempt to check these in- 
quiries. Feeling themselves strong in the support of the nobility, the pro- 
tection of the army, and the long established tranquillity of the realm, they 
considered their power beyond the reach of assault, and anticipated no dan. 
ger from theories on the social contract or from essays on the manners and 
spirit of nations. A direct attack on the monarchy would have consigned 
the offender to the Bastile ; but general disquisitions excited no alarm, 
either among the nobility or in the government. The speculations of these 
eloquent philosophers, however, spread widely among the rising genera- 
tion. Captivated by the novelty of the ideas which were developed, and 
seduced by the examples of antiquity which were held up to imitation, the 
youth imbibed not only free, but republican principles. Madame Roland, 
the daughter of an engraver, and living in an humble station, wept when 
she was yet but nine years old because she was not born a Roman citizen ; 
and she carried Plutarch's Lives, instead of her breviary, in her hand 
when she attended mass in the cathedral. 

Within the bosom of the Church too, owing to an invidious exclusion of 
all persons of plebeian birth from the dignities and emoluments of the eccle- 
siastical establishment, the seeds of deep-rooted discontent were to be found. 
While the bishops and elevated clergy were rolling in wealth or basking 
in the sunshine of royal favor, the humbler clergy, on whom devolved 
the whole practical duties of Christianity, toiled in virtuous obscurity 
among the peasants who composed their flocks. The simple piety and 
unostentatious usefulness of these rural priests endeared them to their 
parishioners, and farmed a striking contrast to the luxurious habits and dis- 
sipated lives of the high-born dignitaries of the Church, whose enormous 
wealth excited the envy of their indigent brethren and of the lower classes 
of the people, while the general idleness of their lives rendered more of- 
fensive the magnitude of their fortunes. Hence, the universal indignation, 
in 1789, at the vices and corruption of the Church, and the readiness with 
which, at the very commencement or the Revolution, the property of the 
clergy was confiscated to relieve the embarrassed finances of the country. 

The distinction between the nobility and the baseborn was carried to a 
length in France of which, in a free country, it is difficult to form an 
adequate conception. Every person was either noble or roiurier; no 
middling class, no gradation of rank was known. On the one side, were 
one hundred and fifty thousand privileged individuals; on the other, the 
whole body of the French people. All situations of importance in the 
Church, the army, the court, the bench, or the ranks of diplomacy, were 
held by the former of these classes : a state of things of itself sufficient to 
produce a revolution in a flourishing and populous country. 

The system of taxation in France was another serious grievance. 
The nobles and clergy were exempt from imposts on the produce of the 
land, and this burden therefore fell exclusively arid with insupportable 


weight on the laboring people. At the same time, the peasantry were, 
with few exceptions, in an indigent condition. Their houses were com- 
fortless, their clothing was little better than rags, and their food was of 
the coarsest and most humble kind. Then, too, in addition to the misfor- 
tune of an impoverished peasantry, France was cursed with a body of 
non-resident landholders, who drew their revenues from the soil, but ex- 
pended them in the metropolis : thus depriving the country-people of that 
direct trade in their own productions so essential to their prosperity. 
Being thus deserted by their natural guardians, and receiving no benefit 
or encouragement from them, the laboring classes acquired a discontented 
spirit, and were soon ready to join those desperate leaders, who promised 
them liberty and pillage as a reward for burning the castles and murder- 
ing the families of the nobility. 

Again, the local burdens and legal services, due from the tenantry to 
their lawful superiors, were to the last degree vexatious and oppressive. 
The peasantry of France were almost in a state of primitive ignorance ; 
not one in fifty could read, and the people in each province were una- 
ware of what was passing in the neighboring provinces. At a distance 
of only fifty miles from Paris, men were unacquainted with the occurrence 
of the most stirring events of the Revolution. No public meetings were 
held, and no periodical press was within reach to spread the flame of dis- 
content ; yet the spirit of resistance gradually became universal from 
Calais to Bayonne. 

The royal prerogative, by a long series of successful usurpations, had 
reached a degree of despotism incompatible with rational freedom. The 
most important right of a citizen, that of deliberating on the passing of 
laws and the granting of supplies, had fallen into desuetude. For nearly 
two centuries the kings, on their own authority, had published ordinances 
possessing all the force of laws, which however could not be legally sanc- 
tioned but by the representatives of the people. The right of approving 
these ordinances was arbitrarily transferred to the Parliament and courts 
of justice, and even their deliberations were liable to be suspended by 
the personal intervention of the sovereign and infringed by despotic im- 

Corruption, too, in its worst form had long tainted the manners of the 
court, as well as of the nobility, and poisoned the sources of influence. 
Since the reign of the Roman emperors, profligacy had never been con- 
ducted in so open and undisguised a manner as under Louis XV. and the 
regent Orleans. 

Finally, hopeless embarrassment in the national finances was the 
immediate cause of the Revolution. It compelled the king (Louis XVI.) 
to summon the States-General as the only means of avoiding national 
bankruptcy., Previous ministers had tried temporary expedients, and 
every other effort including the king's voluntary renouncement of his 
household luxuries had been made to avert the disaster ; but the extra- 
vagant expenses of the government, combined with the vast interest on its 
accumulating debt, rendered them all abortive. 

The 5th of May, 1789, was the day fixed for the opening of the States- 
General ; and, strictly speaking, that was the first day of the French 

The Assembly was opened at Versailles with extraordinary pomp 
Galleries, disposed in the form of an amphitheatre, were filled with a bnl- 



liant concourse of spectators, while the deputies occupied the centre accord- 
ing to the order established at the last Convocation in 1614. The clergy 
sat on the right, the nobles on the left, the commons (or Third Estate) in 
front, of the throne. After the ministers and deputies had taken their 
places, the king appeared, followed by the queen, the princes, and a bril- 
liant suite ; and as he seated himself on the throne amid loud applause, 
the three orders of the deputies rose and covered themselves. In days 
past, the commons remained uncovered and spoke on their knees in the 
presence of the king : their present spontaneous movement was ominous 
of the subsequent conduct of that now aspiring body. The king delivered 
his speech and was followed by the minister of finance, M. Neckar ; but 
although both were listened to with great attention, the deputies observed 
with regret that neither monarch nor minister proposed any tangible expe- 
dient for relieving the pecuniary embarrassment which had called them 

On the day following, May 6th, 1789, the nobles and the clergy organ- 
ized themselves in their respective chambers ; but the commons, to whom 
on account of their numbers the large hall had been assigned, waited, or 
pretended to wait, for the other orders. The contest was now openly 
begun. The commons alleged that they could not verify their powers 
until they were joined by the other Estates ; while the nobles and clergy 
had already verified their powers in their chambers apart, and were ready 
to begin the business of the session. For several weeks, the commons 
now continued to meet daily in the great hall, waiting vainly for the ac- 
cession of the other orders : they attempted to accomplish nothing actively, 
but merely trusted to the negative force of inactivity to compel their oppo- 
nents to submit to them. This state of things could not long continue. 
The refusal of the commons to organize themselves delayed the public 
business completely, while the desperate state of the finances and the rap- 
idly increasing anarchy of the kingdom called loudly for immediate 

During the discussion on this important subject, the clergy, who wished 
to bring about a re-union of the three orders without openly yielding to 
the commons, sent a deputation headed by the Archbishop of Aix, to pro- 
pose that a committee of the commons should meet a few of the clergy 
and nobles in a private conference on the best means of assuaging the 
general suffering. The commons, who did not wish to yield anything, and 
yet knew not how to decline this proposition without compromising them- 
selves, were at a loss what answer to return, when a young man, till 
then unknown to the assembly, rose and said, " Go, and tell your col- 
leagues that if they are so impatient to assuage the sufferings of the poor, 
they must come to this hall and unite with their friends. Tell them no 
longer to retard our operations by affected delays : tell them it is vain to 
employ such stratagems as this to change our firm resolutions. Rather let 
them, as worthy imitators of their master, renounce a luxury which con- 
sumes the funds of indigence ; dismiss the insolent lacqueys who attend 
them ; sell their superb equipages, and convert these vile superfluities into 
aliment for the poor !" At this speech, which so clearly expressed the 
passions of the moment, a confused murmur of applause ran through the 
assembly, and every one asked who was the young deputy who had so 
happily given vent to the public feeling. His name afterwards made 
every man in France tremble : it was MAXIMILIAN ROBESPIERRE. 


At this crisis, the measures of the court were marked with a fatal racil- 
lation. Neckar lacked resolution to carry through the only plan that 
promised security that of uniting the nobles and clergy in one chamber, 
and the commons in another. He did not venture to propose this to the 
commons, because it would have endangered his own popularity, or to 
press it on the king, because he would doubtless have refused it. Thus, 
by wishing to avoid a rupture with either party, he lost the confidence of 
both, and pursued that temporizing policy, which in civil convulsions is 
always ruinous. 

Meanwhile, the pretensions of the commons hourly increased with the 
indecision of their adversaries. They no longer debated whether they 
should organize themselves as the representatives of the nation ; they 
merely hesitated as to what title they should assume. The discussion 
lasted till past midnight, and, atone o'clock in the morning, they resolved 
by a vote of 491 to 90, to assume the title of NATIONAL ASSEMBLY. They 
announced the result to the other orders, and assured them that they 
should proceed to business with or without their concurrence. Their next 
step was to declare all imposts illegal, except those voted by themselves 
or during the period when they were sitting. They then proceeded to 
consolidate the public debt and appoint a committee to watch over the 
public subsistence. 

No language can describe the enthusiasm, which these decisive meas- 
ure's excited throughout all France. "A single day," it was said, "has 
destroyed eight hundred years of prejudice and slavery." But the more 
thoughtful trembled at the consequences of such gigantic steps. 

At length, on the 23rd of June, the king seated himself on the throne, 
surrounded by his guards and attended by the pomp of monarchy. He 
was received in sullen silence. He commenced his speech by condemn- 
ing the commons and lamenting the spirit of faction they evinced. His 
declarations followed ; prescribing, first, the form of the meeting of the 
Estates, and requiring their deliberations to be held with closed doors; 
and, in the second place, setting forth an exposition of the rights which the 
monarch conceded to his people. These in fact contained the whole ele- 
ments of rational freedom. But the concessions which are made under 
compulsion never satisfy those whom they are intended to conciliate, and 
the multitude are never less reasonable than on the first acquisition of 

On the following day, the Duke of Orleans and forty-six of the nobility 
went over to the commons ; when the king, seeing that opposition was 
fruitless, desired the clergy and the remainder of the nobility also to join 
them. The nobles made an energetic remonstrance, and foretold the fatal 
effects of immersing themselves in a body where their own numbers would 
be so inconsiderable, compared to those of their opponents : they at length 
yielded, however, and were speedily lost in an overwhelming majority. 

The king was not long in discovering his error and endeavored to atone 
by rashness for the results of imprudence. The palace of Versailles 
was thrown open to the officers of the army and the young nobility, who by 
their declamation soon persuaded the court that they still had the power 
to control the people. The king therefore changed his ministry, and not 
only dismissed M. Neckar, but gave him an order to quit the kingdom : 
an order that was instantly and silently obeyed. 

As soon as this intelligence transpired, Paris was thrown into the utmost 


consternation. Fury succeeded to alarm ; the theatres were closed ; the 
Palais-Royal resounded with the cry of " To arms !" and a leader, after- 
ward distinguished, Camille Desmoulins, armed with pistols, gave the sig- 
nal for insurrection by breaking a twig from a tree in the gardens and 
placing it in his hat. His example was followed by the crowd and the 
trees were stripped of their foliage. "Citizens," said Desmoulins, "the 
moment for action has arrived ; the dismissal of M. Neckar is the signal 
for a St. Bartholomew of the patriots ; this very evening, the Swiss and 
German battalions will issue from the Champ de Mars to massacre us ; 
our only resource is to fly to arms." The crowd unanimously adopted 
his proposal, and marched through the streets bearing in triumph busts of 
M. Neckar and of the Duke of Orleans. At first, they were charged by 
a German regiment which was put to flight by a shower of stones ; but 
the dragoons of Prince Lamberc coming up soon after, they were dis- 
persed, and the bearer of one of the busts and a soldier of the French guard 
were killed. This was the first blood shed in the Revolution. 

In this extremity, the measures of the court were calculated neither to 
conciliate nor overawe ; though the latter was attempted, since a part of the 
troops were withdrawn to Versailles where the assembly was sitting. It 
seemed as if the government were intent on intimidating that body, with- 
out considering the power of the popular insurrection at Paris. 

During the absence of the military, the tumults of Paris rose to an 
unexampled height. Immense bodies of workmen assembled together, 
and, being joined by the guards, broke open the arsenals and gun- 
smiths' shops, distributed the arms among their adherents, burned sev- 
eral houses and forced open the barriers, which had been closed by 
order of the king. The Hotel des Invalides was taken by the aid of the 
veterans who inhabited it, and within sight of the Ecole Militaire where 
the troops of the line were stationed. No less than twenty thousand 
muskets and twenty pieces of cannon were seized and given out to the 
insurgents. The Place de Greve was converted into a vast depot of 
arms ; at the Hotel de Ville, a committee was appointed which rapidly 
organized an insurrectionary force ; fifty thousand pikes were forged and 
distributed among the people, and it was determined that the armed force 
should be raised to forty-eight thousand men. This was the commence- 
ment of the National Guard of Paris, a body which was of essential 
service, sometimes for good, sometimes for evil, during the Revolution. 

On the morning of the 14th of July, intelligence was spread that the 
royal troops stationed at St. Denis were marching on the capital, and that 
the cannon of the Bastile were pointed down the street St. Antoine. The 
cry immediately arose, " To the Bastile !" and the waves of the tumult 
began to roll in that direction. This fortress was well provided with 
artillery, but it was almost destitute of food, and its garrison consisted 
of but eighty invalids and thirty soldiers of the Swiss guard. When 
the insurgents arrived, a part of their number was admitted within the 
first drawbridge to parley with the garrison, and they began, during the 
conference, to escalade the inner walls ; upon which the governor of the 
Bastile gave orders to fire. Fearful, however, of the effect of grape-shot 
on the dense masses, he at first directed the discharge of musketry only, 
which repelled the leaders, and the mob fell back in confusion. But the 
arrival of the disaffected French guard with artillery soon changed the 
scene. These men intrepidly sustained the fire of the fortress, which 


now discharged grape-shot, and they began to batter the walls in return, 
while the people in the adjoining houses plied the garrison with musketry. 
At this juncture, either by accident or design, the chain that suspended 
the inner drawbridge was cut, and the bridge fell. The assailants rushed 
in, and the garrison, seeing that further resistance was hopeless, hoisted 
the white flag and threw down their arms. 

The consequences of this insurrection were immense. The lower 
orders throughout the provinces of France, in imitation of the capital, 
organized themselves into independent bodies, and established National 
Guards for their protection. Three hundred thousand men were in this 
manner speedily enrolled for the popular party, and the influence of the 
government, as well as the power of the sword, passed into the hands of 
the people. 

Paris, meantime, was in the last degree of confusion. The disorder 
arising from many co-existing authorities rendered the supply of provi- 
sions precarious, and the utmost exertions of the municipality were requi- 
site to prevent the poorer inhabitants from dying of famine in the streets. 
The more violent of the people assembled in mobs, and surrounded the 
bakers' shops and depots of provisions, clamoring for food. An attack ou 
the palace of Versailles was openly discussed in the clubs and recom- 
mended by the orators of the Palais Royal ; until the court deemed it 
indispensable to provide for their own security by ordering to Versailles 
an additional number of troops. This movement, together with the feast 
given to the new-comers by the regiments already quartered there, was 
magnified into a new cause of offence by the Parisian rabble. The cry 
arose, "To Versailles!" and a motley multitude of drunken men ana 
women, armed and unarmed, set out in that direction. The National 
Guard, which had assembled on the first appearance of disorder, impa- 
tiently demanded to follow ; and although their commander, LA FAYETTE, 
exerted his utmost influence to detain them, he was at length compelled 
to yield, and the whole armed force of Paris set out for Versailles. 

The members of the Assembly and the inhabitants of Versailles, though 
less violently excited, were also in an alarming mood. No one, however, 
anticipated immediate danger. The king was out at a hunting-party and 
the Assembly were about to break up for the day, when the forerunners 
of the disorderly multitude from Paris began to appear in the streets. At 
the first intimation of the disturbance the king hastened to the town. He 
found the gates of the courtyard of the palace closed, and his own troops 
drawn up within the inclosure facing the crowd; while without, was 
assembled an immense body of the National Guard, with armed men and 
furious women uttering seditious cries and fiercely demanding bread. A 
heavy rain soon began to fall, however; and this so well seconded the 
efforts of La Fayette to pacify the multitude, that not long after midnight 
comparative.order was restored. Indeed, La Fayette had at that time an 
interview with the royal family, when he assured them of the security 
of the palace; and unfortunately he was himself so far convinced of the 
pacific disposition of his soldiers, that he repaired to a chateau at some 
distance from the palace and retired to sleep. 

But, at six o'clock on the following morning, a furious mob surrounded 
the barracks of the royal body-guard, broke them open, and pursued the 
inmates to the gates of the palace, where fifteen of them were seized and 
doomed to immediate execution. Another mob besieged the avenues to 



the palace, rushed in at an open gate and speedily filled the staircase 
and vestibules of the royal apartments. Two of the body-guard, posted 
at the head of the stair, made the most heroic resistance and gave the 
queen time to escape into the apartment of the king. The assassins 
rushed into her room a few moments after she had left it, and, enraged at 
finding their victim fled, pierced her bed with their bayonets. 

General La Fayette, at the first alarm, threw himself on his horse anc* 
hastened to the spot. He made an impassioned harangue to the grenadiers 
and succeeded in prevailing on them to stay the fury of the mob. The 
leaders of the tumult, being so far foiled, determined nevertheless to derive 
some advantage from their success, by forcing the king and royal family 
to accompany them to Paris. It was not deemed prudent to resist this 
demand ; and the Assembly hastily passed a resolution that they were 
inseparable from the king and would accompany him to the capital, there 
to hold their future sessions. Thus the democratic party achieved a pro- 
digious victory, by having both branches of the legislature transferred to 
Paris, where their own influence was irresistible. The royal party set 
forth at noon on the 8th of October, in the midst of the disorderly multi- 
tude, who did not cease to insult and revile them during the whole of that 
painful journey (prolonged by various impediments through seven hours,) 
at the end of which they were conducted to the palace of the Tuileries. 

Thus terminated the first era of the Revolution. Five months only 
had elapsed since the meeting of the States- General ; and during that 
time not only the power of the sovereign had been overthrown, but the 
very structure of society changed ; and the king after having narrowly 
escaped being murdered in his own palace was now a captive, surrounded 
by perils in the midst of his capital. 

The first legislative measures of the Assembly after removing to Paris, 
were intended to appease the rising jealousy of the provinces. These 
little states, finding their rights and importance extinguished by the fast 
increasing sovereignty of the National Assembly, were in some instances 
taking steps to counteract its influence. To meet the emergency, the 
kingdom was divided into eighty-four departments ; each department 
was subdivided into districts, and each district into cantons. A criminal 
tribunal was established for each department ; a civil court for each 
district ; a court of reference for each canton : and it resulted from the 
further legislation on this subject that the whole force of the kingdom was 
placed at the disposal of the lower orders. By the nomination of munici- 
palities, they had the government of the towns ; by the command of the 
armed force, the control of the military ; by the elections in the depart- 
ments, the appointment of the deputies to the Assembly, of the judges to 
the courts of law, of the bishops to the Church, and of the officers to tha 
National Guard ; by the elections in the cantons, the nomination of magis- 
trates and local representatives. Everything, either directly or by the 
intervention of a double election, flowed from the people ; and the quali- 
fication for voting was so low as, practically, to admit almost every able- 
bodied man. With so complete a democratic constitution, it is not sur- 
prising that, during all the subsequent changes of the Revolution, the 
popular party should have acquired so irresistible a power, and that, in 
almost every part of France, the persons in authority should be found 
supporting the multitude, on whom they depended for political existence. 
. The finances next occupied the attention of the Assembly, and it was 


high time. The nation was subsisting entirely on borrowed money, and 
the public debt had increased during the last three years no less than 
1,200,000,000 francs, or nearly two hundred and fifty millions of dollars. 
In this emergency, the property of the Church was the first that came to 
hand, and it was, without the slightest scruple, sacrificed to the public 
necessities. The Church lands were nearly one-half of the whole landed 
property of the kingdom, and their value was estimated at several thousand 
millions of francs. 

This violent measure led to another which in the end proved even more 
disastrous. The present necessities of the state required the sale of a 
portion of the ecclesiastical property to the amount of 400,000,000 francs, 
(or about eighty millions of dollars ;) and to facilitate the transaction, the 
municipalities of Paris and other cities became the purchasers in the first 
instance, and they relied for reimbursement on the subsequent sale of the 
property, in detached portions, to individuals. But a difficulty arose in 
finding a circulating medium in sufficient quantity to discharge the price 
of so extensive a purchase before the secondary sales were effected ; and 
the difficulty was met by issuing the promissory notes of the several mu- 
nicipalities to the government in exchange for their land ; these notes 
passed current as money until they severally came to maturity. When 
that period arrived, however, the original difficulty recurred ; there was 
no medium with which to discharge the notes ; arid at length recourse 
was had to an issue of government bills, which should bear a legal value 
and pass for money from one end of the kingdom to the other. The 
issue of these bills soon superseded the necessity of sales of confiscated 
property ; for the government retained the domains in its own control as 
a security for its bills, which were thereafter made as they were wanted, 
and eventually issued in such prodigious amounts as forbade all hopes of 
their ever being redeemed. Thus arose the system of ASSIGN ATS, the 
source of more public strength and private suffering than any other 
measure in the Revolution. 

Month after month the Assembly continued to sit, and almost every new 
act of their legislation tended to the more complete ruin as well of what 
was vicious as of what was good and venerable in the ancient constitution 
and social organization of France. Meantime, as it was- evident to all 
reflecting minds that greater atrocities were yet to be enacted, and that, 
for the present, all legitimate government was at an end, the king made 
two unsuccessful attempts to escape from Paris ; and the nobility began 
to emigrate in large numbers to Coblentz. In fact, the resolution to depart 
became so general, that the roads leading to the Rhine were crowded 
with the elegant equipages of noble families, who did not, as in the time 
of the Crusades, sell their estates, but abandoned them in the hope that 
they might soon regain them by the sword. Vain hope ! The Assembly, 
in due time, confiscated their property, the republican armies vanquished 
their battalions, and their inheritances were lost for ever. 

At length, on the 29th of September, 1791, after having adopted a consti- 
tution which vested some nominal authority in the king and placed all the 
real power in the hands of the people, the National Assembly closed its 
iittings ; leaving the future conduct of the government to a Legislative 
Assembly who had just been elected on the basis of a universal suffrage. 



THE members of the Legislative Assembly in the formation of which 
not only was almost every man entitled to a vote, but was also eligible 
to election were, probably, the most motley group that ever undertook 
to regulate the affairs of a large and powerful country. Not fifty of the 
whole number were possessed of twenty-five hundred francs (five hun- 
dred dollars) a year. They were composed chiefly of presumptuous and 
half educated young men, clerks in counting-houses, and attorneys from 
the provincial towns who had risen to notice during the absence of all 
persons of wealth, and recommended themselves to attention by the ve- 
hemence with which they proclaimed the principles of democracy. In 
many instances they had talent enough to be dangerous, without knowl- 
edge enough to guide or property enough to check their ambition. If a 
demon were to select a body of men qualified to consign a country to per- 
dition, he could not choose more efficient colleagues. 

The new Assembly opened its sittings on the 1st of October, 1791. Its 
members divided themselves into three parties ; the Feuillants, or friends 
of the Constitution, who had for leaders Lameth, Barnave, Duport, Damas 
and Vaublanc ; the Girondists or republicans, led by Vergniaud, Guadet, 
Gensonne, Isnard, and Brissot ; and the Jacobins, or ultra revolutionists, 
led by Chabot, Bazire and Merlin. The real influence of the latter party, 
however, was to be found in the Jacobin clubs throughout Paris, where 
Robespierre, Danton and others held absolute sway. 

The first acts of the new Assembly were directed against the clergy and 
the emigrants. The clergy having been already despoiled of their posses- 
sions, were now required to take the oath to the Constitution, which cur- 
tailed their salaries to a mere pittance and ordered them to be moved from 
place to place, so that they could acquire no influence over their peo- 
ple ; forbidding them, also, to exercise any religious rites in private. The 
emigrants, were condemned to death and their estates to confiscation, un- 
less they returned to France before the first of January, 1792. The 
king refused to sign these acts, but as he had already openly disapproved 
of the emigration, he issued a proclamation recalling the absentees. In 
this, as in almost all his acts, he gave dissatisfaction and offence to every 

The Assembly were mere successful in persuading the king, though 
much against his will, to declare war against Hungary and Bohemia. 
This step, which was taken on the 20th of April, 1792, was popular with 
all parties. The Royalists hoped that the German powers might prevail, 
and by overturning the revolutionary authority, reinstate the king ; the 
Constitutionalists, seeing their own consequence on the wane, hoped to 
regain it through the influence of the army ; and the Jacobins longed for 
the tumult and excitement of campaigns, from which they felt confident 
in some way of reaping substantial advantage. Thus commenced tho 
greatest, the most oloody, and the most eventful war which has agitated 
mankind since the Fall of the Roman Empire. It rose from feeble be- 
ginnings, but it finally enveloped the world in its commotion. 




The intelligence of the declaration of war was received with joy by all 
the people of France. It communicated a new impulse to the public 
mind, already so excited. Addresses to the Assembly came in from every 
municipality, congratulating them on having vindicated the national 
honor ; arms were prepared, gifts provided, and the nation seemed impa- 
tient to receive its invaders. But such displays of patriotism, how strong 
soever as auxiliary to military discipline, are seldom able to supply its 
place. The first encounters with the enemy were all unsuccessful to the 
French arms, and it more than once appeared in the sequel that, had the 
allies acted with decision and pressed on to Paris before military experi- 
ence had been added to the enthusiasm of the French, the war might have 
been terminated by. a single campaign. These disasters to the armies 
produced the utmost consternation in Paris : each party accused the others 
of treachery, and general distrust and recrimination prevailed. The 
Assembly took the most energetic measures for ensuring their own au- 
thority and the public safety. They declared their sittings permanent, 
disbanded the guard of the king, and exiled the refractory clergy. To 
secure the capital from insult, they directed the formation of a camp of 
twenty thousand men near Paris, and sought to maintain the enthusiasm 
of the people by a series of revolutionary fetes. 

The evident peril of the king now aroused him to more than usual vigor ; 
but his measures still lacked that judgment which is essential to efficient 
exertion. On pretexts comparatively frivolous, he estra'nged himself from 
the Girondists, who in many respects were well disposed toward him, and 
he dismissed the three ministers on whom he could best have relied. The 
Girondists, chagrined at these proceedings, and fearful of the increasing 
power of the Jacobins, planned a general insurrection. On the 20th of 
June, a tumultuous body ten thousand strong, under direction of the Giron- 
dists, made their way to the doors of the Assembly with a petition for the 
total destruction of the Executive power. The hall was next thrown open, 
and the mob, now increased to thirty thousand men, women and children, 
passed through in procession uttering furious cries and displaying seditious 
banners. They next proceeded to the palace, the outer gates of which 
were left open. They immediately broke into the garden, thronged the 
staircase and entered the royal apartments, where Louis stood sur- 
rounded by a few attendants. The foremost of the crowd, overawed by his 
presence, made an involuntary pause ; but the mass behind pressed on- 
ward, and the king was soon jostled and in imminent danger, from which 
his attendants with great difficulty rescued him, not however until he had 
received numberless personal indignities from the mob. This outbreak at 
last terminated without bloodshed, but its occurrence showed the desperate 
condition of the capital. 

The court had now no hope but in the approach of the allies, who, un- 
der the Duke of Brunswick, had just entered the territories of France. 
The allied army consisted of fifty thousand Prussians and sixty-five thou- 
sand Austrians and Hessians. The Duke issued a proclamation, in which 
he warned the Assembly that if they did not forthwith liberate the king 
and return to their allegiance, they should forfeit their heads, and if the 
slightest insult were again offered to the royal family an exemplary pun- 
ish mont should be inflicted by the total destruction of the city of Paris. 
The effect of this manifesto was, in every particular, unfortunate ; for, from 
the distance of the invaders at the time of its promulgation, it roused the 



people to resistance, instead of overawing them ; and, being regarded as a 
disclosure of the ulterior designs of the king, it furnished a pretext to the 
Assembly and the populace for yet more violent proceedings against the 
whole royal family. 

As it was evident that some new outrage was contemplated, the king 
made preparations to defend the palace. His chief reliance was on the 
Swiss guard, of whom he could assemble about eight hundred men. In 
addition to these, some detachments of the National Guard who were 
believed to be faithful occupied the court of the Tuileries, and some hun- 
dreds of Royalists, chiefly of noble families, were scattered through the 
palace. On the other hand, the insurgents, organized by Danton and 
Robespierre, were assembled in great force and well supplied with artil- 
lery. The first assault was nobly repelled by the Swiss; but, as they 
were unsupported by the National Guard and unable from the smallness 
of their numbers to follow up their advantage, they were eventually over- 
thrown and massacred almost to a man. Thus in this last extremity, it 
was neither in his titled nobility nor his native soldiers that the French 
king found fidelity, but in the free-born mountaineers of Lucerne, un- 
stained by the vices of a corrupt age and firm in the simplicity of rural 
virtue. These events took place on the 10th of August, 1792, and they 
were immediately followed by a decree of the Assembly suspending the 
king, dismissing the ministers, and directing the instant formation of a 
National Convention. On the 13th of August, the royal family were 
removed to the Temple and confined as state prisoners. 

The victory over the throne on the 10th of August was followed by 
the submission to the ruling party of all the departments of France. But 
the intelligence had at first a different reception at the head-quarters of 
La Fayette's army, then stationed at Sedan. The officers and men 
appeared to share the consternation of their leader, and even renewed 
their oath of fidelity to the constitutional throne ; but the period had not 
arrived when soldiers, accustomed to look only to their chief, were pre- 
pared at his command to defy the authority of the legislature. In fact, 
La Fayette soon found that he had prematurely compromitted himself 
and was forced to flee from the army, whence he intended to escape to 
America; but he was arrested near the frontier by the Austrians and 
conducted to the dungeons of Olmutz. He was offered his liberty on 
condition of making certain recantations of opinions maintained by him 
in the earlier stages of the Revolution concerning a modification of the 
royal prerogative and in favor of a constitutional throne : but he preferred 
enduring four years of rigorous confinement to receding in any particular 
from the principles he had embraced. The Assembly declared him a 
traitor and set a price on his head, and the first leader of the Revolution 
owed his life to imprisonment in an Austrian fortress. 

Meanwhile, the principal powers of the French government fell into 
the hands of Danton, Marat and Robespierre, well designated "the Infer- 
nal Triumvirate;" and their influence was speedily felt in the measures 
adopted by the municipality of Paris. 

Their first demand on the Assembly was for the appointment of a 
Revolutionary Tribunal, which, by being invested with the power to 
pronounce sentence of death without appeal, would be able to take sum- 
mary vengeance on all concerned in the defence of the palace on the 10th 
of August, on which occasion so many of "the people" were slain. Tha 


Assembly strove to resist this sanguinary demand, but they were forced 
to submit. 

On the 29th of August, the barriers of Paris were closed and remained 
shut for forty-eight hours, so that all escape from the city was impossible; 
arid domiciliary visits through every quarter of the town supported by a 
large military force were then made by order of the Tribunal. Several 
thousands of all ranks were arrested, but the victims were selected chiefly 
from the nobles and dissident clergy. Dar.ton now directed the opera- 
tions of the tribunal and prepared lists of proscription which ho distributed 
to his functionaries. Early in the morning of the 2nd of September a band 
of three hundred assassins, directed and paid by the magistrates, assembled 
around the doors of the Hotel de Ville, where they were plied with ardent 
spirits and furnished with final instructions. 

The prison of the Abbaye was the first to be visited. Four-and-twenty 
priests, put under arrest for refusing to take the new oath, were at the 
time in custody at the Hotel de Ville. They were now placed in six 
coaches and conducted to the Abbaye amid the yells and execrations of 
the mob ; and the moment they arrived, they were dragged out from the 
carriages into the inner court of the prison, and there butchered. The 
cries of these victims first announced to the prisoners within the fate that 
awaited themselves. A tribunal was convened in an adjoining dungeon, 
over which Maillard presided by torch-light. He had a drawn sabre 
before him, his robes were drenched in blood, and officers with drawn 
swords and blood-stained shirts surrounded his chair. Reding, one of the 
Swiss guards, was first summoned to appear before this tribunal ; but, 
while he was passing through the court, the impatient populace assailed 
him with knives, and he fell dead before he reached his judges. Others 
were successively called for. A few minutes, and often a few seconds, 
sufficed for the trial of each individual, when he was turned out to the 
vengeance of the multitude who thronged around the door with knives 
and sabres, panting for blood and loudly demanding a more rapid supply 
of victims. Immured in the upper wards of the building, the other 
prisoners witnessed with agony the prolonged sufferings of their comrades, 
and some had the presence of mind to observe in what manner the victims 
soonest met death, in order that, when their turn came, they might shorten 
their own sufferings by avoiding useless struggles. 

After this butchery "had proceeded for some time, the populace in the 
more remote part of the court of the prison complained that those only 
who were nearest the dungeon of the tribunal could cut down the prison- 
ers, while they were deprived of the privilege of shedding aristocratic blood. 
It was therefore stipulated, that those in advance should strike the con- 
demned with the backs of their sabres, so that the victims might be made 
to run the gauntlet through a long avenue of murderers before they were 
finally struck down. The women in the adjoining quarter of the town 
made a formal demand to the tribunal to be admitted as spectators of this 
scene of blood ; accordingly, benches were arranged, under charge of 
sentinels, for their accommodation. As each prisoner was successively 
turned into the court, a yell of joy arose from the multitude ; and when 
he fell, they danced like cannibal's around his remains. In the midst of 
the massacre, Mademoiselle de Sombrieul, a beautiful girl of eighteen, 
threw herself on her father's neck when he was beset by the assassins, 
and declared they should not strike him but through her body. In 


amazement at her courage, the mob paused ; and one of their number 
presented to her a cup filled with blood, exclaiming " Drink ! it is the 
blood of the aristocrats: drink it, and we will spare him." She did so 
and her father was saved. Similar tragedies took place at the same time 
in all the other prisons of Paris and in many religious houses occupied as 
prisons for the occasion. About five thousand persons perished during 
these massacres, besides some thousands of criminals previously confined 
in the jails for minor offences unconnected with the state, but who now 
fell innocent victims to that thirst for blood by which the people were infu- 
riated. The slaughter continued without interruption from the 2nd to the 
6th of September ; at the end of which time the corses were thrown into 
trenches already prepared by the municipality for their reception. They 
were subsequently conveyed to the catacombs, where they were built up 
with masonry, and where they still remain, the monument of crimes unfit 
to be thought of even in the abodes of death, and which France would 
willingly bury in oblivion. 

The perpetration of these murders in the French capital by so small a 
number of men, is one of the most inotructive facts in the history of 
revolutions. Marat had long before said that, with two hundred assassins 
at a louis a day for each, he would govern France and cause three hun- 
dred thousand heads to fall : and these events of September seemed to 
justify his assertion. The number of those actually engaged in the 
massacre did not exceed three hundred, and about twice as many 
witnessed and encouraged their proceedings: yet this handful of men 
governed Paris and France with a despotism which three hundred thou- 
sand armed warriors afterward strove in vain to impose. The immense 
majority of the well-disposed citizens, divided in opinion, irresolute in 
conduct and dispersed in different quarters, were incapable of arresting 
a band of assassins engaged in the most atrocious cruelties, of which 
modern Europe has yet afforded an example. It is not less worthy of 
remark that these deeds of blood were enacted in the heart of a city 
where above fifty thousand men were enrolled in the National Guard and 
nad arms in their hands a force, too, specifically provided to arrest 
insurrectionary movements and support the majesty of the Law. But 
they were so divided in opinion, and the Revolutionists composed so large 
a part of their number, that nothing whatever was done by them, either 
on the 10th of August when the king was dethroned, or on the 2nd of 
September when the prisoners were massacred. 

In the midst of these horrors, the Legislative Assembly drew to its 
termination and was succeeded in its misrule of blood by a body still 
more revolutionary and ferocious f he NATIONAL CONVENTION. Of its 
members it is sufficient to say thai the most prominent and influential 
were Robespierre, Danton, Marat, Desmoulins, Varennes and others who 
directed the massacres of September. The whole was comprised in three 
parties. The Girondists, occupying the right, had the majority of votes, 
but lacked the courage and energy to exert their power on urgent occa- 
sions. The Jacobins, occupying the summit of the left (whence their 
designation "The Mountain,") were fewer in numbers, but they were 
affiliated with the Parisian mob and supported by its municipality, who 
at their call would always crowd around the doors of the hall and over- 
awe the whole assembly. A third, or neutral party was called "the 
Plain ;" its orinciples were not at first declared and its members ranged 


themselves with the Girondists, until terror compelled them to coalesce 
with the fierce minority. 

The first measure of the Convention was to abolish the monarchy and 
proclaim a REPUBLIC. This occurred on the 20th of September, 1792 ; 
after which the calendar was so changed that the current year became 
the first year of the French Republic. Their next care was a considera- 
tion of the finances. From the repori of M. Cambon, the minister of that 
department, it appeared that the preceding assemblies had authorized the 
issue of no less than 2,700,000,000 of francs (about five hundred and 
forty millions of dollars,) a prodigious sum to have been disbursed in 
three years of peace. As a trifle only of this amount remained in the 
treasury, a new issue was ordered on the security of the national domains 
which domains were constantly accumulating in the hands of the gov- 
ernment, and now, from continual confiscations, embraced more than two- 
thirds of the landed property of France. 

The Convention then proceeded to some changes in the constitution 
adopted by their predecessors. On the motion of the Duke of Orleans, 
the few remaining requisites to election, whether for voters or candidates, 
were abolished. Every person, of whatever rank, was declared eligible 
to any office, so that absolute equality, in its literal sense, was universally 

Another measure, momentous in its consequences, was soon brought 
forward : namely, an attempt on the part of the Girondists to impeach 
Robespierre and Marat. The attempt failed, but its importance consisted 
in its development of the relative strength of the Girondist and Jacobin 
parties in the Convention, prior to the undertaking of another measure 
which was destined to attract the eyes of Europe and of the world. This 
was the trial of Louis XVI. 

To prepare the nation for this event, and to familiarize them with the 
tragedy in which they were resolved it should terminate, the Jacobins 
had taken the most vigorous measures throughout all France. In their 
central club at Paris, the question was repeatedly canvassed, and their 
discussions were transmitted to all the departments ; while, daily, at the 
bar of the Convention, petitions were presented praying for vengeance on 
the remainder of the murderers of the 10th of August, and for "death to 
the last tyrant." 

The charges against Louis were very numerous ; but of all of them it 
suffices to remark that, so far as they were true, the acts they recited were 
perfectly justifiable ; and that the greater part were base calumnies, 
incapable of proof and totally without foundation in fact. 

During his imprisonment in the Temple, the unfortunate monarch was, 
gradually and under various frivolous pretexts, deprived of almost every 
comfort. At first, the royal family were permitted to spend their time 
together. They breakfasted at nine in the queen's apartment ; at one, 
if the weather were fine, they walked for an hour in the garden, strictly 
watched by the officers of the municipality, from whom they often received 
the most cruel insults. Some hours were devoted to the instruction of the 
prince, and at intervals the princess-royal played with her brother and 
softened by every attention the pain of her parents' captivity. Soon, 
however, the precautions and restrictions of the manicipality became more 
intolerable. The officers refused to let them be out of their sight for an 
instant, and when they retired to rest, a bed was placed for the guard at 


the door of eacn room. Writing materials were taken from them, and, soon 
after, the scissors, needles and bodkins of the princesses, with which they 
nad whiled away many a tedious hour ; and, such was the rigor of their 
exclusion from the world without, they were almost wholly ignorant of 
what was taking place in the city. The municipality next determined 
to separate the king and the dauphin from the queen and princesses : a 
most barbarous decree and one that brought tears into the eyes of the 
officers who enforced it. 

The king appeared before the Convention to hear and plead to the 
charges on the llth of December, when, after some debate, it was decided 
that lie should have time to prepare his defence and choose his own counsel. 
He made choice of M. Tronchet and M. Target ; the former of whom 
accepted and faithfully discharged his duty; the latter had the baseness to 
decline. The venerable Malesherbes afterward volunteered his services 
to defend the king, and united with Tronchet in applying to Deseze for 
his cooperation, which that celebrated advocate immediately accorded. 

When the eloquent peroration of Deseze was read to the king, the even- 
ing before it was to be delivered to the Convention, Louis requested him 
to strike it out from his argument. " It is enough for me," said he, " to 
appear before such judges and demonstrate my innocence : I will not 
condescend to appeal to their feelings." On the same day, he composed 
his immortal Testament; the most perfect commentary on the principles 
of Christianity that ever came from the hand of a king. " 1 recommend 
to my son," said he in a portion of that touching memorial, "should fie 
ever have the misfortune to become a king, to feel that his whole existence 
should be devoted to the good of his people ; to bury in oblivion all hatred 
and resentment, especially for my misfortunes ; to recollect that he can- 
not promote the happiness of his subjects but by reigning according to the 
laws ; at the same time, he cannot carry his good intentions into execution, 
without the requisite authority. I pardon all those who have injured me 
and I pray my son to recollect only their sufferings. I declare before 
God. and on the eve of appearing at his tribunal, that I am wholly inno- 
cent of the crimes laid to my charge." 

The trial commenced on the 26th of December and was continued for 
twenty days. The king's counsel defended their client with consummate 
ability, but the case, like most cases that came before that bloody tribunal, 
was prejudged, the royal victim was in effect condemned before he was 
accused, and eloquence and argument, as well as every appeal to humanity 
and justice, were equally vain. The final vote was taken on the 15th of 
January, when Louis was unanimously pronounced guilty; an astounding 
decision to all parties, but evidently given under the expectation that it 
would not prove fatal to the king ; for, when the remaining question was 
proposed as to the punishment to be inflicted, it was debated through a 
protracted and stormy session of no less than forty hours, and finally decided 
by a majority of only twenty-six out of seven hundred and twenty-one 
votes. The sentence was DEATH. 

But for the defection of the Girondists, the king's life would have been 
saved. Forty-six of their party, including Vergniaud, voted against him. 
They were anxious to save the king, but fearful of irritating the Jacobins 
by voting according to their own wishes. Almost every one of these forty- 
six afterward perished on the same scaffold, to which they had condemned 
their sovereign 


On the 20th of January, Santerre, with a deputation from the munici. 
pality, presented himself before the king and formally read the sentence. 
Louis received it with unshaken firmness and demanded a respite of three 
days in which to prepare for heaven; he also solicited an interview with 
his family and a confessor. The last two demands alone were conceded, 
and the execution was ordered for the following morning at ten o'clock. 

The king's last interview with his family was a heart-rending scene. 
At half past eight in the evening, the door of his apartment opened and 
the queen appeared leading by the hand the princess-royal and the prin- 
cess Elizabeth, the sister of Louis : they all rushed into his arms. For 
some minutes there ensued a profound silence broken only by the sobs 
of the afflicted family. The king then sat down, having the queen on his 
left, the princess-royal on his right, Elizabeth in front and the dauphin 
between his knees. This terrible scene lasted nearly two hours. Louis 
at length rose ; the royal parents each gave a parting blessing to the 
dauphin, while the princesses still held the king around the waist. As 
he approached the door, they uttered the most piercing cries. " I assure 
you," said Louis, " I will see you again in the morning at eight." " Why 
not at seven?" they exclaimed. "Well, then, at seven," answered the 
king. He then pronounced the word "adieu!" but in so mournful an 
accent that the lamentations redoubled, and the princess-royal fainted at 
his feet. The king finally tore himself from them and turned for conso- 
lation to the Abbe Edgeworth, who spent the remainder of the night with 
him and heroically discharged the perilous duty of attending his last 

At nine o'clock, on the 21st of January, Santerre reappeared to conduct 
his sovereign to the scaffold. In passing through the court of the Temple, 
Louis gave a last look at the tower which contained all that was dear to 
him in the world ; and, immediately summoning his courage, he calmly 
seated himself in the carriage beside his confessor and opposite two gen- 
d'armes. During the passage to the place of execution, which occupied 
two hours, he continued to repeat the psalms pointed out to him by his 
confessor. The streets were filled with an immense crowd who beheld 
the mournful procession in silent dismay : a large body of troops sur- 
rounded the carriage, and a double file of soldiers and National Guards 
with a formidable train of artillery rendered hopeless any attempt at 
rescue. When the procession arrived at the designated spot, between the 
garden of the Tuileries and the Champs Elysees, Louis descended from 
the carriage and disrobed himself without the aid of the executioners; 
but he manifested a momentary indignation when they began to bind his 
hands. The Abbe Edgeworth checked him, saying with almost inspired 
felicity, " submit to this outrage, as the last resemblance to the Saviour, 
who is about to recompense your sufferings." He mounted the scaffold 
with a firm step ; with a single look he imposed silence on twenty drummers 
placed there to prevent his being heard, and said with a loud voice *< I die 
innocent of all the crimes laid to my charge; but I pardon the authors 
of my death and pray God that my wrongs may never be visited upon 
France. And you, unhappy people " At these words, Santerre ordered 
the drums to beat ; the executioners seized the king and the axe terminated 
his existence. One of the attendants grasped the head and waved it in 
the air, and the blood was sprinkled over the confessor who knelt beside 
the lifeless corse of his sovereign. 


The body of the king, immediately after the execution, was removed 
to the ancient cemetery of the. Madeleine at the end of the Boulevard 
Italienne and placed in a grave six feet square. Large quantities of 
quick lime were thrown on the body, so that when, in 1815, the remains 
were sought after, that they might be conveyed to the Royal Mausoleum 
in St. Denis, scarcely any part could be discovered. 

The king was executed in the centre of the Place Louis XV. on the 
same spot where afterward, the queen, the princess Elizabeth and many 
other noble victims of the Revolution perished ; where, also, Robespierre 
and Danton were executed ; and where the Emperor Alexander and the 
allied sovereigns took their station, when their victorious armies entered 
Paris on the 31st of March, 1814. Thus, the greatest of revolutionary 
crimes and the greatest of revolutionary punishments took place on the 
same spot : nor has modern Europe another scene to exhibit fraught with 
equally interesting recollections. It is now ornamented by the colossal 
obelisk of blood-red granite which was brought from Thebes, in Uppei 
Egypt, in 1833, by the French government. That monument, which wit- 
nessed the march of Cambyses, and survived the conquests of Caesar and 
Alexander, is destined to mark to the latest generation the scene of the 
martyrdom of Louis and of the final triumph of his immortal avenger. 

The character of this monarch cannot be better described than in the 
words of Mignet, the ablest of the Republican writers of France. " Louis 
inherited a revolution from his ancestors : his qualities were better fitted 
than those of any of his predecessors to have prevented or terminated 
it ; for he was capable of effecting reform before it broke out, and of 
discharging the duties of a constitutional throne under its influence. He 
was perhaps the only monarch who was subject to no passion, not even 
that of power, and who united the two qualities essential to a good king, 
fear of God and love of his people. He perished, the victim of passions 
which he had no share in exciting ; the passions of his supporters with 
which he was unacquainted, and the passions of the multitude which he 
had done nothing to awaken. Few kings have left so venerated a mem- 
ory. History will write for his epitaph that, v/ith a little more force of 
mind, he would have been unrivalled as a sovereign." 



IT was not to be expected that so great an event as the French Revolu 
lion, rousing as it did the passions of one portion and exciting the appre- 
hensions of the other portion of mankind all the world over, could long 
remain an object of passing observation to the adjoining states. It ad- 
dressed itself to the hopes and prejudices of the great body of the people 
in every country ; and, by exciting their ill-smothered indignation against 
their superiors, added to a sense of their real injuries the more powerful 
stimulus of revolutionary ambition. A ferment accordingly began to spread 
through the neighboring kingdoms ; extravagant hopes were formed, chi- 


merical anticipations indulged, and the laboring classes, inflated by the 
rapid elevation of their brethren in France, believed the time was ap- 
proaching when the distinctions of society were to cease and the miseries 
af poverty expire, amid the universal dominion of the people. 

Austria, Russia and England were at this time the great powers of 
Europe, and they therefore bore a principal part in the long and desperate 
struggle that ensued. 

Nine years of peace had enabled Great Britain to recover in a great 
degree from the exhaustion of the American war. If she had lost an 
empire in the Western, she had gained one in the Eastern world. Her 
national debt, amounting to 244,000,000 sterling (ten hundred and 
sixty millions of dollars,) on which the annual interest was 9,317,000 
(forty-four millions of dollars,) was a severe burden on the industry of the 
people ; while the yearly taxes, though light in comparison with what 
were subsequently imposed, were still felt to be oppressive. The resources 
of the kingdom were, nevertheless, enormous. Commerce, agriculture 
and manufactures had rapidly increased, the trade with the independent 
States of North America was found to exceed in value what it had been 
\vhen that country was in a state of colonial dependence, and the exertion 
of individuals to improve their condition had produced a surprising effect 
on the accumulation of capital and the state of public credit. The three 
per cents., which were at -57 at the close of the war, had risen to -99, and 
the overflowing wealth of the cities was already finding its way into the 
most circuitous foreign trade and hazardous distant investments. The 
national revenue amounted to 16,000,000 (seventy-six millions of dol- 
lars,) and the army included thirty-two thousand soldiers in the British 
Isles, besides an equal force in the East and West Indies and thirty-six 
regiments of yeomanry. After the commencement of the war, and pre- 
vious to 1796, the entire regular army of Great Britain amounted to two 
hundred and six thousand men, including forty-two thousand militia. More 
than half of this force, however, was required for the service of the colo- 
nies ; and experience has proved that Britain can never collect more than 
forty thousand at any one point on the continent of Europe. The strength 
of England consisted in her inexhaustible wealth, in the public spirit and 
energy of her people, in the moral influence of centuries of glory, and in 
a fleet of a hundred and fifty ships of the line which gave her the undis- 
puted command of the seas. 

The opinions of the people on the French Revolution were greatly 
divided. The young, the ardent, the philosophical, the factious, the rest- 
less and the ambitious were sanguine in their expectations of its success, 
and exulted in its promise of benefit to the human race : while the great 
majority of the aristocracy, the adherents of the Church, the holders of 
office under the monarchy, and in general the opulent ranks of society 
beheld it with disgust and alarm. 

At the head of the first party, was Mr. Fox, the eloquent and illustrious 
champion of universal freedom. Descended from a noble family, he in- 
herited the love of liberty, and by the impetuous torrent of his eloquence 
long maintained his place as leader of the opposition of the British Empire. 

Mr. Pitt was the leader of the second party, which, at the commence- 
ment of the French Revolution, was in full possession of the government 
and had a decided majority in both houses of Parliament. Modern his- 
tory can scarcely furnish another character of such eminence. His early 


career was distinguished by the sentiments and principles inherited from 
his father, the first Lord Chatham, and his great abilities gave him from 
the outset a prominent place in Parliament. On the 12th of January, 
1784, before he was five-and-twenty years of age, he took his seat in the 
House of Commons, as Chancellor of the Exchequer ; and never did a 
more arduous struggle await a minister. The opposition, led by the 
impetuous energy of Fox, aided by the experience, influence and admi- 
rable temper of Lord North, possessed at that time a large majority in 
the lower House, and they treated with the utmost scorn this attempt of a 
young man of four-and-twenty to disposses them of the government. But 
it was soon evident that Pitt's transcendent talents were equal to the task. 
Invincible in resolution, cool in danger, fertile in resource, powerful in 
debate, and possessed of a moral courage which nothing could overcome, 
Pitt exhibited a combination of great qualities which, for political contest, 
was never excelled ; he successfully withstood the most formidable par- 
liamentary majority which had appeared in England since the days of 
Cromwell, and ultimately remained victorious in the struggle. 

Mr. Burke was the leader of a third party composed of the old Whigs 
who supported the principles of the English, but opposed those of the 
French, Revolution. This celebrated man had long stood side by side 
with Mr. Fox in the opposition, but on the breaking out of the French 
Revolution, he took part with the government. With great political saga- 
city he exerted his talents to oppose the levelling principles which that 
convulsion introduced; and his work on that subject produced a greater 
impression on the public mind than, perhaps, any other book which has 
yet appeared in the world. It abounds in eloquent passages and profound 
wisdom ; but vast as ,was its influence, and unrivalled as was its reputa- 
tion, its value was not fully understood till the progress of events demon- 
strated the justice of its principles. The division on this vital question for 
ever alienated these two illustrious men from each other, and drew tears 
from both of them in the House of Commons where it took place : a striking 
token of the effects which the Revolution, out of its immediate sphere, 
produced on the charities of private life, and of the variance which it 
occasioned in the bosom of families and between friendships that "had 
stood the strain of a whole life." 

Austria was the most formidable rival of the French Republic on the 
continent of Europe. This great empire, containing at the time nearly 
twenty millions of inhabitants, and having a revenue of ninety millions 
of florins, held the richest and most fertile districts of Europe among its 
provinces. The possession of the Low Countries gave Austria an advanced 
post immediately in contact with the French frontier, while the mountains 
of the Tyrol formed a vast fortress, garrisoned by an attached and war- 
like people, and placed at a salient angle between Germany and Italy. 
Her armies, numerous and highly disciplined, had acquired great renown 
in the wars of Maria Theresa and maintained a creditable position, under 
Daun and Laudohn, in the scientific campaigns with the Great Frederic. 
Her t-rovernrnent, nominally a monarchy, but really an oligarchy in the 
hands of the great nobles, possessed all that firmness and tenacity of 
purpose for which aristocratic powers have always been distinguished, 
and which, under unparalleled difficulties and disasters, at last brought 
her successfully through the long struggle in which she was soon 
afterward engaged. The Austrian forces, at the commencement of 

1792.] HIS TORY OF EUROPE. 21 

war, amounted to two hundred and forty thousand infant* y, thirty-five 
thousand cavalry, and one hundred thousand artillery; while the extent 
0*" the empire and the warlike disposition of the inhahitants furnished inex- 
haustiDle resources for the maintenance of the contest. 

The military strength of Prussia, raised to the highest pitch of ^Jiich 
its resources would admit, by the genius of the great Frederic, rendered , 
this once inconsiderable kingdom a first-rate power on the Continent. Its 
army, one hundred and sixty thousand strong, including thirty-five thou- 
sand cavalry, was in the best state of discipline and equipment; and this 
force, considerable as it was, formed but a small part of the strength of 
the kingdom. By an admirable system of organization, the whole of the 
Prussian youth were compelled to serve a limited number of years in the 
army,* so that not only was a taste for military habits universally diffused, 
but the country always possessed an immense reserve of experienced 
troops who might in any emergency be called to its defence. The states 
which composed the Prussian monarchy were by no means so coherent 
as those of the Austrian dominions. Nature- had traced out for them no 
limits like the Rhine, the Alps or the Pyrenees, to designate their boun- 
daries ; no great rivers or mountain chains protected their frontiers ; and 
few fortified towns guarded them from the incursions of the military 
nations by which they were environed. Their surface consisted of four- 
teen thousand square leagues, and their population amounted to nearly 
eight millions, composed of different races, professing different creeds and 
speaking different languages. Toward Russia and Austrian Poland, a 
frontier of two hundred leagues was destitute of places of defence ; Sile- 
sia, alone, enjoyed the double advantage of three lines of fortresses and 
the strongest natural barriers. The national security rested entirely on 
the army and the courage of the inhabitants. The government was a 
military despotism, and the liberty of the press was unknown; neverthe- 
less, the public administration was tempered by the wisdom and benefi- 
cence of its state-policy. In no country of Europe were private rights 
more thoroughly respected, or justice more rigidly observed, than in the 
courts and domestic government of Prussia. 

The immense Empire of Russia comprehending nearly half of Europe 
and Asia, backed by inaccessible regions of frost, secured from invasion 
by the extent of its surface and the severity of its climate, inhabited by a 
patient and indomitable race who were ever ready to exchange the luxu- 
ries and adventure of the south for the hardships and monotony of the 
nor th was daily becoming formidable to the liberties of Europe. The 
infantry of Russia had long been celebrated for its immovable firmness ; 
and the cavalry, though inferior to its present sta.te of discipline and equip- 
ment, was inured to service in the war with the Turks, and mounted on 
a hardy and admirable race of horses. The artillery was more distin- 
guished for the obstinate valor of its men, than for the condition of its 
guns. The armies were recruited by a certain proportion of conscripts 
drawn from every hundred of male inhabitants ; a mode of supply in a 
large and rapidly increasing population, that was not easily exhausted. 
The entire force in 1792 amounted to two hundred thousand men, exclu- 
sive of the youth of the military colonies, and of the well-known Cossacks 
of the Don. This irregular force, composed of the pastoral tribes in the 
southern provinces of the Empire, was a very slight expense to the govern- 
ment : it was necessary only to issue an order for a certain number of these 


hardy bands to take the field, and crowds of active young men appeared, 
equipped at their own cost, mounted on small but indefatigable horses, and 
ready to undergo all the hardships of war. Gifted with the individual in- 
telligence which belongs to the pastoral and savage character, and yet sub- 
ject^ to a certain degree of discipline, they were the best light troops in 
the world, and were more formidable to a retreating army than the bravest 
of French or Russian dragoons. The population of Russia, in Europe alone, 
was nearly thirty-five millions, and was increasing at a rate which doubled 
its numbers in forty years : this supply of inhabitants, with the other re- 
sources of the Empire, enabled her to bear a distinguished part in the ap- 
proaching conflict. 

Sweden was too remote from the scene of European strife to have much 
weight in the political scale. She had recently, however, concluded a 
glorious war with her powerful neighbor, Russia ; for her arms, in alliance 
with the arms of Turkey, had taken the Russian forces by surprise, and 
Gustavus, her king, extricating himself by a desperate exertion of valor 
from a perilous situation, had destroyed the Russian fleet and gained a 
great victory so near to St. Petersburg that the sound of his cannon was 
heard in the palace of the empress. Catherine hastened to be rid of the 
Swedish war by offering advantageous terms to her brave antagonist, and 
flattered him to accept them by representing that the efforts of all sove- 
reigns should now be directed toward resisting the progress of the French 
Revolution and that he alone was worthy to head the enterprise. 

Placed on the other extremity of the Russian dominions, the forces of. 
Turkey were still less enable of affecting the balance of European power: 
her troops, too,- though formidable among their native defences to an in- 
vading army, were comparatively inefficient, when removed from their 
own fields and brought into contact with the better disciplined armies of 
other European states. 

The political importance of Italy had sunk almost as low as that of 
Turkey. Inhabiting the finest country in Europe a country blessed 
with the richest plains and most fruitful mountains, defended from inva 
sion by the encircling sea and the frozen Alps, venerated also from the 
recollections of ancient greatness and from its containing the cradle of 
modern freedom the people of Italy were yet as dust in the scale of 

The kingdom of Piedmont, situated on the frontiers of Italy, partook 
more of the character of its northern than its southern neighbors. Its 
soldiers, drawn chiefly from the mountains of Savoy, Liguria, or the 
maritime Alps, were brave, docile and enterprising, and, under Victor 
Amadeus, had risen to the highest distinction in the beginning of the 18th 
century. The regular army amounted to thirty thousand infantry and 
three thousand five hundred cavalry ; and the government could, in addi- 
tion to this, summon to its support fifteen thousand militia who, in defend- 
ing their mountain passes, rivalled the best troops in Europe. They 
were chiefly employed during the war in guarding fortresses ; and the 
number of these, joined tc the natural strength of the country and its posi- 
tion important as holding the keys of the great passes of the Alps, gave 
this state a degree of military consequence beyond what could have been 
anticipated from its mere physical strength. 

Sunk in obscure marshes, crushed by the naval supremacy of England, 
and cooped up in a corner of Europe, Holland had become a compara- 


lively insignificant power. Its army still consisted of forty thousand men 
and its fortified towns and means of inundation showed the same ability 
of defence as had formerly been exerted ; but the resolution of the people 
was far inferior to the strength of their position. 

The peasantry of Switzerland, on the other hand, cradled in snowy 
mountains, tilling a sterile soil and habituated to hardships, exhibited at 
this time the same characteristics which have always rendered them cele- 
brated in European wars. Their lives were as simple, their courage as 
undaunted and their patriotism as warm as were those of their ancestors 
who fell at Morat or Morgarten : but as their troops did not exceed thirty- 
eight thousand in number, they could take little active part in the great 
contests that agitated the plains of Europe. 

The people of the Spanish Peninsula were able to assume a more dis- 
tinguished place in the strife for European freedom. This singular 
and mixed race, united to the tenacity of purpose which marked the 
Gothic, the fiery enterprise that characterized the Mcforish blood : cen- 
turies of almost unbroken repose had neither extinguished the one nor 
abated the other ; and Napoleon, at a later day, erroneously judged the 
temper of her people when he measured it by the inglorious reigns of the 
Bourbon dynasty. Her national strength had indeed declined, by reason 
of the accumulation of estates in the hands of noble families who were 
degenerated by long-continued intermarriages, and of the predominant 
influence of the Catholic priesthood : but the courage and prowess of her 
peasantry were unimpaired and her ability to repel invasion was signally 
proved in many instances during the war. The nominal military strength 
of Spain was one hundred and forty thousand men ; but this force was 
far from being effective ; and in the first campaigns she was not able to 
muster eighty thousand combatants. 

The forces of France destined to contend with this immense aggregate 
of military strength, were far from being considerable at the commence- 
ment of the struggle. The infantry consisted of one hundred and sixty 
thousand men, the cavalry of thirty-five thousand, and the artillery of ten 
thousand. During the first stormy period of the Revolution, the discipline 
of the troops had declined ; and the custom of each man's judging for him- 
self had introduced into the army a degree of license wholly inconsistent 
with military subordination. These defects, however, were speedily 
remedied under the iron rule of the Convention. 

In contemplation of the approaching contest, a treaty of alliance, offen- 
sive and defensive, was concluded on the 7th of February, 1792, between 
Sweden and Austria ; but, it seemed that Providence was preparing a 
new race of actors for the mighty scenes now to be performed ; for Leo- 
pold of Austria died on the 1st of March following; and on the 16th of 
the same month, Gustavus was assassinated at a masked ball. 

Leopold was succeeded by his son Francis, then but twenty-four years 
of age, whose reign was the most eventful, the most disastrous, and ulti- 
mately the most glorious in the Austrian annals. His first measures 
were popular and judicious; Kaunitz was continued as prime-minister, 
and with him were associated in the cabinet, Marshal Lascy and Count 
Francis Colloredo. He suppressed- those articles in the journals which 
loaded him with praise, observing, " It is by my future conduct that I 
am to be judged worthy of praise or blame." When the list of pension- 
ers was submitted to his inspection, he erased the name of hi mother, 



saying that it was not becoming for her to be dependent on the bounty of 
the state. 

Hitherto, Great Britain had observed a strict neutrality toward France, 
but the progress of events soon forced her to a change of policy. The 
10th of August came; the French throne was overturned; the royal 
family imprisoned ; and the massacres of September stained Paris with 
blood. In the frenzy of their democratic fury, and intoxicated with suc- 
cess, the Revolutionary party adopted measures incompatible with the 
peace of other states. A Jacobin club of twelve hundred members was 
established at Chamberry, in Savoy, and one hundred of its most active 
individuals were selected as travelling missionaries "armed with the 
torch of reason and liberty, for the purpose of enlightening the Savoyards 
on their regeneration and imprescriptible rights." An address was voted 
by this club to the French Convention as "legislators of the world," and 
received by them on the 20th of October, 1792. They ordered it to be 
translated into the English, Spanish and German languages. The rebel- 
lious Savoyards next formed a Convention, in imitation of that of France, 
and offered to incorporate themselves with the great Republic. The 
French Convention promptly accepted the proffered dominion of Savoy, 
and united it to the Republic under the name of the Department of Mont 
Blanc. The seizure of Savoy was followed by that of Nice with its ter- 
ritory, and Monaco; these were styled the Department of the maritime 
Alps. Italy was the next object of attack, and Piedmont the first point 
assailed. To facilitate the work, a French fleet cast anchor in the Bay 
of Genoa, and a Jacobin club was established in that city. Kellerman, 
on assuming the command of the army of the Alps, informed his soldiers 
that he "had orders to conquer Rome, and the orders should be obeyed." 
The French ambassador at Rome was in the mean time so active in urg 
ing the people to insurrection, that, when proceeding in his carriage to one 
of his conferences, he was seized by the mob, at whom he had discharged 
a pistol, and was murdered in the streets. Switzerland, too, and ^the 
smaller German 'principalities, were subjected to insult or sequestration. 
Finally, on the 19th of November, a decree was unanimously passed by 
the Convention, which openly placed the French Republic at war with 
all established governments. 

These unprecedenied and alarming proceedings, joined to the rapid 
increase and treasonable language of the Jacobin societies in England, 
excited a general disquietude in that country ; and after some time spent 
in correspondence with the French government, matters were brought to 
a crisis by the execution of Louis. As there was now no longer even the 
shadow of a government in the French capital with which to maintain a 
diplomatic intercourse, the French minister was notified to quit the Brit- 
ish dominions within eight days; and on the 3rd of February, 1793, the 
French Convention declared war against Great Britain. 



AFTER the decision of the Assembly for war, and the forced declaration 
of Louis to that effect, in April, 1792, three considerable armies were 
ordered to be formed. In the north, Marshal Rochambeau commanded 
forty thousand infantry and eight thousand cavalry, cantoned from Dun- 
kirk to Phillipville. In the centre, La Fayette was stationed with forty- 
five thousand infantry and seven thousand cavalry, from Phillipville ^to 
Lautre ; while Marshal Luckner, with thirty-five thousand infantry and 
eight thousand cavalry, observed the course of the Rhine from Bale to 
Lauterburg. In the^south, General Montesquieu, with fifty thousand 
men, was charged with the defence of the line of the Pyrenees and the 
course of the Rhone. But these armies, however formidable their num- 
bers may sound, were as yet very inefficient, as the license of the Revo- 
lution had impaired their discipline, and destroyed their respect and 
confidence in their commanders. 

To oppose these forces, however, the allies made but an indifferent de- 
monstration. Fifty thousand Prussians and sixty-five thousand Austrians 
and Hessians were all that could at first be mustered at various points for 
the invasion of France. 

Encouraged by the inconsiderable Austrian force in the Low Countries, 
the French resolved to invade Flanders in four columns, and on the 28th 
of April, 1792, put themselves in motion ; but in every direction they were 
routed by the Austrians at the first onset, so that the corps destined to 
advance to Furnes fell back on hearing of these reverses, and General 
La Fayette judged it prudent to suspend the movement of his whole army 
and retire to his camp at Rancennes. 

The extreme facility with which this invasion of Flanders was repelled, 
astonished all Europe. The Prussians conceived the utmost contempt for 
their new opponents, and it is curious to recur to the sentiments they 
expressed on the occasion. " Do not buy too many horses," said the 
minister Bischoffswerder, to several officers of rank ; " the farce will not 
last long ; the army of lawyers will soon be annihilated." 

The Jacobins and war party at Paris, though extremely disconcerted 
by these disasters, had the address to conceal their apprehensions, and 
denounced the severest penalties against the real or supposed authors of 
the national disgrace. Energetic measures were taken to reenforce the 
armies. Rochambeau was dismissed and Luckner ordered to take his com- 
mand and resume offensive operations. But this feeble and irresolute old 
nan was ill qualified to restore the confidence or efficiency of the army. 
He was defeated in his first movement, and at the same time La Fayette 
met with a signal overthrow. These events naturally increased the 
presumption of the allies, and rendered them indifferent about pressing on 
with energy to strike a decisive blow. The Duke of Brunswick, who 
was intrusted with the command of the allied army, was alone adequately 
impressed with the importance of the campaign, and strongly urged the 
necessity of hastening their operations before the French could recover 
from their discomfiture and alarm. 


On the 25th of July, the King of Prussia joined the army, and on the 
same day the proclamation, already referred to in Chapter II., was issued 
in the name of the Duke of Brunswick ; though it was not drawn up by 
him, and he strenuously denounced its impolicy. On the 30th of July, 
the whole army broke up and entered the French territory. 

A triple barrier defended the eastern frontier of France, and the line 
of march proposed by the allies lay through the centre of the chain : there 
were but three fortresses on this line, Sedan, Longwy and Verdun, all 
at that time in a wretched condition, after which nothing but fertile plains 
interposed between the invaders and Paris. Under these circumstances, 
a powerful attack and rapid advance seemed the most prudent and effectual 
means of terminating the campaign ; and so it must have proved, had the 
allies displayed an energy adequate to the emergency. They advanced, 
indeed, but with inexplicable slowness and timidity ; took the fortress 
of Longwy after a three days' siege, received intelligence of the flight 
of La Fayette from his army, and at the end of six days invested Verdun. 
This fortress capitulated on the 2nd of September. Sedan and the forest 
of Argonne in its neighborhood were now the only impediments on the 
road to Paris. But the successes of the allies, great in effect, though 
trivial as military achievements, only increased their inactivity. They 
lingered around Verdun until Dumourier, who was dispatched from the 
Assembly to take command of the army, had occupied Sedan and the 
passes of the forest with twenty-five thousand men. Yet though a golden 
opportunity was thus wantonly thrown away, the allies displayed more 
activity and military conduct in the sequel. 

As it was now impossible to pursue his original line of advance or dis- 
lodge Dumourier by an attack in front, the Duke of Brunswick moved a 
part of his forces to Landres in order to turn the left of the French posi- 
tion. This compelled Dumourier to detach a portion of his right wing 
(which occupied the Croix au Bois, one of the five passes of the forest,) in 
order to reenforce his left ; when Clairfait, finding the defences of the 
Croix au Bois thus weakened, pushed on with a strong body of allies and 
made himself master of the pass: by this means, the allies were enabled 
to threaten the rear of the French and disturb their communications with 
the capital. Dumourier was now forced to retreat with a part of his 
army to St. Menehould ; but he still held the two most important passes 
of the Argonne (Islettes and Chalade,) and France had gained time to 
bring new forces into the field. Dumourier fortified his position at St. 
Me'ne'hould, and was soon joined by two considerable auxiliary armies 
under Kellerman and Bournonville, which raised the numbers and confi- 
dence of the Republicans to a footing of equality with the invaders. 

The Duke of Brunswick, after learning the movements of Dumourier, 
put his troops in motion, advanced through the unguarded defiles of the 
forest, and took post between the French army and Paris. The hostile 
forces were now in a singular position : the allies faced toward the Rhine, 
with their rear on Champagne ; while the French rear was at the forest 
nf Argonne, and their front toward tneir own capital. An action imme- 
diately ensued on the field of Valmy, in whi^h the allies had the advan- 
tage, but they did not follow it up, and the contending parties withdrew 
at nightfall to their original positions. But it is with an invading army 
as with an insurrection ; an indecisive action is equivalent to a defeat. 
This affair was merely a cannonade ; the loss on both sides did not exceed 


eight hundred men, yet it produced on the allies the effect of an overthrow : 
it proved that the French troops could endure fire with steadiness, and 
repel an assault with bravery ; and it destroyed the illusion under which 
both armies had hitherto labored namely, that the allied troops, when 
joined on equal terms, were superior to the French. Indeed, the conduct 
of the Duke of Brunswick, both in this action and in the movements which 
for three weeks preceded it, would be altogether inexplicable, if the 
external aspect of the military events were alone considered. The truth 
is, as it was afterward revealed, that during this time a secret negotiation 
was depending between the Duke and Dumourier, with the avowed 
object of obtaining the recognition by Dumourier of the constitutional 
throne, and to accomplish a junction between his force and the allies to 
sustain it. The Duke was quite sincere in this project, but it soon ap- 
peared that Dumourier was not, and he had encouraged the proposal and 
protracted the negotiations merely to gain time for the better organization 
of his forces. This accounts for the Duke's partial operations at Valmy ; 
he was fearful by a decided battle and probable victory of converting a 
promised ally into an irreconcileable opponent. 

No sooner was the action terminated, than the interchange of secret mes- 
sengers became more active than ever. Lombard, the private secretary 
of the Duke, allowed himself to be made prisoner in disguise, and con- 
ducted the negotiation. The Duke insisted on the immediate liberation of 
the French king, and the reestablishment of a constitutional monarchy ; 
while Dumourier avowed that, anxious as he was to accomplish these ob- 
jects, he could not hope to bring the Convention to such a decision' until 
the allies should first evacuate the French territory ; and he reasoned that 
after rendering such signal service to his government, they would natu- 
rally yield to his influence in behalf of the king : on the other hand, should 
the allies refuse this preliminary condition, he would throw all his energies 
into the scale of war, which, with his present reenforcements, he was well 
able to maintain. Besides, were the contest continued, the lives of the 
king and the whole royal family would be sacrificed to the resentment of 
the Convention. 

These representations were so well put by Dumourier and sustained by 
such able arguments, that the allies after some discussion, in which the 
King of Prussia strenuously opposed the plan of Dumourier, finally con- 
sented to retreat ; agreeing to evacuate the fortresses they had taken, on 
condition of being unmolested on their homeward march. They were not 
long in discovering that they had been trifled with ; but in the mean time, 
they had lost all their advantages, and the French frontier was put in a 
state of defence. 

Dumourier, having thus foiled the enemy by diplomacy and relieved the 
country from the danger that threatened it on the east, found himself at 
liberty to make a new attempt on Flanders. 

While these decisive events were taking place in the central provinces, 
operations of minor importance, though material to the issue of the cam- 
paign, were going on in Alsace and the Low Countries. The French 
camp at Maulde was broken up, and a retreat commenced toward the 
camp at Bruille, a strong position in the rear: but in executing this move- 
ment, they were, on the 14th of September, attacked and completely 
routed by the Austrians. Encouraged by this success, the Archduke 
Albert, with a force of twenty-five thousand men, undertook the siege of 


Lisle, one of the strongest towns in Europe, and which, in 1708, had made 
a glorious defence against the united armies of Eugene and Marlborough. 
The garrison consisted of ten thousand men, who, with their commander, 
a man of courage and ability, were devoted to the cause of the Republic. 
In this case, little success could be anticipated from a regular siege, but 
the Austrians endeavored to intimidate the garrison by a bombardment, 
which was continued night and day for a whole week. The soldiers, 
however, in their bomb-proof casements, were secure from this terrible 
Btorm which fell with desolating effect on the inhabitants : and soon after, 
the arrival of General Lamartiliere and the approach of Dumourier forced 
the Austrians to raise the siege and withdraw from France. This affair, 
also, estimated by its results, was regarded as a glorious triumph to the 
French arms, and inspired the Republican troops with new energy. 
Meanwhile, General Custine, who was posted near Landau with seventeen 
thousand Frenchmen, undertook an offensive movement against Spires, 
where the allies had collected large magazines. By a rapid advance, he 
surrounded and made prisoners a corps of three thousand men an event 
that led to the immediate capture of Spires, Worms and Frankenthal. 
Custine next moved, at the head of an army now reenforced to twenty-two 
thousand men, against Mayence. He invested that important fortress on 
the 19th of October and on the 21st, by reason of Jacobin influence and 
defection in the garrison, it was forced to capitulate. The allies thus 
lost their only fortified post on the Rhine. 

Dumourier now advanced upon Flanders at the head of a central force 
of forty thousand men, in the highest spirits and anticipating nothing 
but triumph : while three auxiliary armies moved in the same direction, 
amounting together to sixty thousand men. 

The Austrians could bring to oppose Dumourier but eighteen thousand 
men : they were, however, intrenched at the village of Jemappes behind 
fourteen redoubts strengthened by all the resources of art and armed by 
nearly a hundred pieces of artillery : it was thought that the difference 
in position of the respective armies nearly atoned for their disparity in 
numbers, and both parties, with equal confidence, resolved on a general 

The battle commen'ced at daybreak on the 6th of November. General 
Bournonville led the first attack against the village of Cuesmes, on the Aus- 
trian left. A sustained fire of artillery for a time arrested his efforts, but 
at length the flank of Jemappes was turned and the redoubts on the left 
of the Austrian position were carried by an impetuous assault of the 
French infantry. Dumourier seized this moment to bring his whole 
centre against the front of Jemappes. He moved on rapidly and with 
little loss till he reached the village, where his columns were disturbed and 
thrown into some confusion by a flank charge of the imperial cavalry, 
while the leading battalions, checked by a tremendous fire of grapeshot, 
were beginning to waver at the foot of the redoubts. In this extremity, a 
young general, rallying the broken regiments into one column, placed 
himself at its head, and renewed the attack with such spirit that the vil- 
lage and redoubts were carried and the Austrians driven at once from their 
intrenchments into the centre of the field beyond. This young officer was 
the Duke de Chartres, afterward Louis PHILIPPE, king of the French. 
Meantime, Bournonville, though at first successful on the right, had not 
followed up his attack with sufficient vigor; the Austrians had rallied, 


returned to the charge, and Bournonville began, in turn, to give ground ; 
when Dumourier hastened to the spot and rode along in front of the waver- 
ing columns, who received him with cries of vive Dumourier ! The effect 
was decisive : the Austrians were repulsed, and the French dragoons, 
taking advantage of their confusion, charged home and completely routed 
them. Dumourier now returned to the centre to reenforce the Duke de 
Chartres, but he had not proceeded far when an aid-de-camp met him with 
the intelligence that the battle there, as well as on the left, was already 
won and the Austrians were retiring on all points to Mons. The Aus- 
trians lost in this action five thousand men ; but they saved all their artil- 
lery except fourteen pieces and withdrew from the field in good order. 
The French loss exceeded six thousand men, but they had gained a vic- 
tory which greatly increased the moral strength of their army and in fact 
led to the immediate conquest of the whole Netherlands ; for the Austrians 
were so disheartened by the defeat of Jemappes, that between their own 
want of conduct and the Jacobin influence which pervaded their garrisons, 
every fortress of the Low Countries, including Antwerp and Namur, fell 
into the hands of the French before the middle of December. 

But the revolutionary party in Flanders, which had contributed so much 
to the success of the French arms, soon reaped the bitter fruits of Repub- 
lican conquest. The French Convention issued a dacree on the 15th of 
December, proclaiming in their conquered provinces, " the sovereignty 
of the people, the suppression of all the constituted authorities, subsisting 
taxes and imposts, feudal and territorial rights, the privileges of the nobility 
and exclusive privileges of every description." Immediately after the 
issuing of this decree, Flanders was inundated by a host of revolutionary 
agents, with " liberty," " patriotism." and " protection" on their tongues, 
and violence, confiscation and bloodshed in their measures. Danton, La- 
croix and Carrier were at the head of this band ; and, infusing their own 
infernal energy into their agents, they gave the inhabitants of Flanders 
a foretaste of the Reign of Terror. 

The French troops, thus successful on the northern and eastern frontier, 
and also (as related at the close of the last Chapter) in Piedmont and 
Savoy on the southeastern side, were destined to some reverses on the 
Upper Rhine, where the King of Prussia, by a vigorous assault, took 
possession of Frankfort and slew or made prisoners its entire garrison, 
with the exception of two hundred men. As the season was now far ad- 
vanced, however, this success was not followed up, and both armies went 
(into winter-quarters. 
Thus terminated the campaign of 1792 ; a period fraught with valuable 
instruction for the statesman and the soldier. The contagion of Repub- 
lican principles had gained for France many conquests, but the severity 
of Republican rule had rendered the delusion in the conquered provinces 
as short lived as it was fallacious. The campaign which opened under 
such untoward auspices, had been marked by brilliant success on the part 
of the French ; but it was evident that their conquests had exceeded their 
strength, and that at its close, their affairs in many quarters were de- 
clining. The army of Dumourier fell into the most disorderly state, 
whole battalions having deserted their colors and returned home or spread 
themselves as banditti over the vanquished territory. The armies of 
Bournonville and Custine were in little better condition, their recent fail, 
ures having gone far to neutralize the effect of their previous success ; 


while the troops who had overrun Savoy and Piedmont, were sufficing 
under the consequences of their own plunder and devastation in the fiis 
tricts where they were quartered. 




IT is necessary, now, to resume the narrative of events in the French 
Capital, where the recent death of the king had disappointed by its result* 
the expectations of his murderers, and, by increasing their reciprocal 
hatred, had excited them to renew with even aggravated feroci'v their 
strife of violence, outrage and blood. 

The difficulty of procuring subsistence in Paris the necessary result 
of revolutionary convulsions had increased to an alarming degree during 
the months of February and March, 1793. Dread of pillage and unwill- 
ingness of the cultivators to sell their commodities for payment in the depre- 
ciated currency for the issue of assignats was unlimited and confidence 
in their value was already destroyed rendered abortive the efforts of 
government to supply the public necessities. At the same time, the price 
of every article of consumption increased so greatly as to excite the most 
vehement clamors among the people and soon inflamed them to fury. A 
tumultuous body surrounded the hall of the Jacobins urging them to peti- 
tion the Convention for a law reducing the prices of provisions, the penalty 
of which should be death. The demand was refused ; and Marat, on me 
following morning, published a violent tirade in his journal directly re- 
commending the pillage of the shops. The populace were not slow in 
following his suggestion, and many shops were accordingly broken open 
and ransacked. All the public bodies were filled with consternation at 
these disorders. The shop-keepers especially, who had been at the first 
such decided revolutionists, were in despair when anarchy approached 
their own doors. 

In the midst of this convulsion, the Jacobins, despite the opposition of 
the Girondists, organized a Revolutionary Tribunal which was empowered 
to "take cognizance of every attempt against liberty, equality, the unity 
and indivisibility of the Republic, the internal and external security of 
the state, all conspiracies tending to the reestablishment of royalty, or 
hostile to the sovereignty of the people, whoever might be the parties 
accused." The members of the jury, the judges, and the public accuser 
were chosen by the Convention ; the Tribunal decided on the opinion of a 
majority of the jury ; the decision of the court was without appeal : and 
the effects of the condemned were confiscated to the Republic. The pub- 
lic accuser was Fouquier Tinville, and his name soon became as terrible 
as that of Robespierre. 

The creation of this fearful Tribunal gave the greatest alarm to the 
Girondists, and they found it indispensable from mere self-defence to give 
some check to the mad career of the Jacobins. They accordingly, by a 


great effort, caused Marat to be sent for trial to the Revolutionary Tribu- 
nal, on a charge of having instigated the people to demand the punishment 
of the national representatives. This was the first instance of destroying 
the privilege of inviolability of the members of the Convention ; but the Ja- 
cobins were not idle in counteracting it. Their leaders accompanied 
Marat to the Tribunal, influenced its deliberations, obtained his acquit- 
tal, and brought him back in triumph. An immense multitude followed 
them to the hall, crowded into it with shouts, and seated themselves 
in the vacant places of the deputies. 

Defeated in this attempt, the Girondists saw that there was no time to 
be lost in making some new organization. Guadet, one of their most 
energetic members, rose in his place and proposed to " annul the author, 
ities of Paris, to replace the municipality by the presidents of the Sections, 
to unite the supplementary members of the Convention at Bourns, and to 
announce this resolution to the departments by extraordinary couriers." 
These decisive measures, if adopted, would have destroyed the designs 
and influence of the Jacobins ; but they would also have occasioned a 
civil war, and, by dividing the centre of action, augmented the danger of 
foreign subjugation. Barere saw this, and proposed " a commission of 
twelve persons to watch over the designs of the municipality, to examine 
into the recent disorders, and arrest their authors," but' he denounced the 
measures of Guadet as a virtual declaration that they were unequal to 
combat the influence of the municipality. This proposal was adopted. 

The Commission of Twelve commenced their proceedings with vigor. 
They were aware that a conspiracy against the Girondists in the Conven- 
tion had for some time been organized in Paris by the club of Cordeliers, 
who demanded the proscription of three hundred deputies. The Commis- 
sion obtained evidence of this conspiracy and arrested one of its leaders, 
Hebert. The municipality denounced this arrest and invited the people 
to revolt. Some of the most violent of the Revolutionary Sections followed 
the example, while the more moderate ones who held out for the Conven- 
tion were besieged by clamorous bands of armed men. 

On the 25th of May, a furious multitude assembled around the hall of 
the Convention, and sent a deputation to the bar of that body, demanding 
in the most threatening terms the suppression of the Commission of Twelve 
and the liberation of Hebert. Isnard, president of the Assembly, a cour- 
ageous Girondist, replied indignantly, refusing the demand and averring 
that if the Convention were again to be outraged by an armed faction, 
France would rise as one man to avenge their cause, Paris would be des- 
troyed, and strangers would soon inquire on which side of the Seine it 
formerly stood. 

For the time, the conspirators were baffled and forced to retire : but they 
resolved to proceed to insurrection. The remainder of that day and the 
whole of the next was spent in agitation and in exciting the people by 
inflammatory harangues ; and such was their success, that by the morn- 
ing of the 27th, eight-and-twenty of the Sections were assembled to peti- 
tion for the liberation of Hebert. The Commission of Twelve could now 
rely on the armed force of three Sections only ; yet these hastened on the 
first summons to the support of the Convention, and ranged themselves with 
their arms and artillery around the outside of the hall. But an immense 
multitude crowded about their ranks ; cries of" death to the Girondists!" 
resounded on all sides, and the hearts of the most resolute began to quail. 


Within the hall, the Girondists with difficulty maintained their ground 
against the Jacobins, until Garat, the Minister of the Interior, entered 
and deprived them of their last resource their position of unbending firm- 
ness. When called on to report the state of Paris, he declared that he 
could find no evidence or appearance of a conspiracy, and in his judg- 
ment the Convention was threatened with no danger but a mischievous 
spirit within themselves to create dissension. It is but justice to Garat 
to say, that he had been deceived into making this report by the artful 
misrepresentations of Pache, the mayor of Paris. Astounded by this 
report, so entirely the reverse of what they anticipated and coming as it 
did from a minister of their own choice, the Girondists were struck dumb ; 
the greater part of them withdrew at once and the courageous Isnard was 
forced to yield the chair to Herault de Sechelles. The motion was then 
put, that the Commission of Twelve be abolished and Hebert set at liberty : 
it was carried at midnight amid the shouts of the mob, who climbed over 
the rails and voted on the benches of the Mountain with the Jacobins. 

The Girondists, on the following morning, ashamed of their untimely 
desertion, assembled in force and reversed the decree of the Jacobins by 
a decided majority. The agitation, which had begun to subside, was now 
renewed with increased violence. The leaders of the Jacobins organized 
a new insurrection, collected a large body of armed men whom they 
placed under the command of Henriot, and on the morning of the 31st of 
May, marched to the Tuileries where the Convention was assembled. 
Under these auspices, a new petition was presented demanding the sup- 
pression of the Commission, a law reducing the price of bread, and the 
proscription of twenty-two leaders of the Gironde. The debate that en- 
sued was violent to the last degree ; but the stern energy of the Jacobins 
supported by the armed mob in part prevailed, and a majority voted to 
suppress the Commission. 

But the Revolutionists had no intention of stopping here. On the even- 
ing of that day, Varennes declared in the club of the Jacobins that the 
work was only half done, and that it must be completed before the 
ardor of the people had time to cool. Additional preparations were there- 
fore made, and at daybreak on the 2nd of June, all Paris was under arms. 
The forces now assembled were formidable indeed. One hundred and 
sixty pieces of cannon manned by gunners with lighted matches in their 
hands, resembled rather the preliminaries for assaulting a powerful for- 
tress than demonstrations against an unarmed legislature. By ten o'clock 
the avenues to the Tuileries were blockaded by dense columns of artillery, 
and eighty thousand armed men surrounded the defenceless representa- 
tives of the people. 

Again the debate grew wild and vehement, and the whole Assembly 
was in the utmost agitation, when Lacroix, one of its members and an in- 
timate friend of Danton, entered the hall with a haggard air and announced 
that the troops at the gate had refused to let him pass out, and that the 
Convention was in fact imprisoned within the walls of the Tuileries. With 
these words, he had unconsciously proclaimed the secret of the conspira- 
tors : the insurrection was not conducted by Danton and the Mountain, 
but by Robespierre and the municipality. Danton rose at once and pro- 
posed that the members should go forth in a body to resent this insult, and 
the president accordingly led the way, followed by the whole Convention. 
They were met by Henriot at the principal gate leading to the Place du 


Carre jsel, who demanded the surrender of four-and-twenty of the culpable 
deputies. This was indignantly refused, when Henriot replied " Cannon, 
iers! to your guns!" Two guns charged with grapeshot were imme- 
diately brought to bear on the members of the Convention, who instinctively 
shrunk back, and after vainly attempting to escape by the other gates, 
returned in dismay to the hall. Marat followed them at the head of 
a body of brigands, crying, " In the name of the people, I order you to 
enter, deliberate and obey !" When the members were seated, Couthon 
rose and proposed that thirty of the Girondists, whose names he called 
over, should be put under arrest. A great portion of the members refused 
to vote, and this suicidal measure was carried by the sole voice of the 
Mountain and a few of its adherents. The multitude now cheered and 
dispersed : their victory was complete ; the municipality of Paris had 
overthrown the National Convention. 

The proscribed members were at first put under arrest in their own 
houses, and several found the means of escape before the order was issued 
for their imprisonment : but the greater part were consigned to the prison 
and thence conducted to the scaffold. The political career of the Giron- 
dists was now terminated : thenceforward, they were known only as in- 
dividuals by their resolute conduct in adversity and death. 

The aspect of the Convention, after this event, was entirely changed : 
the Jacobins had absolute control of its proceedings, and all decrees pro- 
posed by them were adopted in silence without any discussion. The 
practical administration of affairs was lodged in the hands of the Com- 
mittee of Public Safety which had been created some months before ; the 
superintendence of the police was vested in a Committee of General 
Safety ; while the internal regulation of the city was confided to the 
municipality of Paris. Each of these departments was invested with 
despotic power and executed its prerogative with terrible energy. 

Opinions throughout the provinces of France were greatly divided at 
this crisis. The magistracy of the cities had for the most part, under the 
operation of universal suffrage, fallen into the hands of the Jacobins, and 
that faction had organized clubs in almost every corner of the kingdom, so 
that the preponderance of effective power was in their hands : yet the 
majority of numbers in France was undoubtedly on the opposite side. 
The catastrophe of the 2nd of June threw the whole of the southern depart- 
ments into a flame. At Lyons, Marseilles and Bordeaux, violent agitations 
ensued and the outrage of arresting the deputies excited among the Giron- 
dists the most lively indignation. On the 13th of June, the department 
of Eure gave the signal of insurrection, a great part of Normandy foLo.ved 
the example, and all the departments of Brittany were in arms. In short, 
so rapidly did the disaffection spread, seventy departments were in a state 
of insurrection and but fifteen remained true to the Jacobin interest. 
The want of an efficient organization, however, prevented this general 
outbreak from accomplishing any important result : and as the Convention 
put forth all its energies to maintain its supremacy, the insurrection was 
crushed almost as speedily as it arose. 

The Committee of Public Safety thenceforward exercised all the powers 
of the government. It appointed and dismissed the generals, the judges 
and the juries, brought forward all public measures in the Convention and 
launched its thunder against every opposing faction. By means of its 
commissioners, it ruled the provinces, generals and armies with absolute 


sway ; and, soon after, the law of suspected individuals placed the personal 
freedom of every subject at its disposal : the Revolutionary Tribunal ren- 
dered it the master of every life ; the requisitions, master of every for- 
tune ; and the accusations in the Convention, master of every member 
of the Legislature. 

The law of suspected persons declared all those liable to arrest, who 
" by their conduct, their relations, their conversation, or their writing, 
have shown themselves the partisans of tyranny or the enemies of free- 
dom ; all those who have not discharged their debts to the country ; all 
nobles ; the husbands, wives, parents, children, brothers, sisters, or agents 
of emigrants who have not incessantly manifested their devotion to the 
Revolution." Under this law, no one had any chance of safety but in 
going to the utmost length of revolutionary fury. 

The Revolutionary Committees were declared the judges of the persons 
liable to arrest. Their numbers augmented with frightful rapidity. Paris 
soon had forty-eight, and every village throughout the country had one or 
more. Five hundred thousand persons drawn from the dregs of society to 
serve on these Committees, disposed of the life and liberty of every man 
in France. No better description can be given of the tyranny of these 
despotic Commissioners than is furnished by the report of one of their num. 
ber to the Convention. " Everywhere," said Laplanche, " I have made 
terror the order of the day ; everywhere I have imposed heavy contribu- 
tions on the rich and the aristocrats. From Orleans I have extracted fifty 
thousand francs ; and in two days at Bourges, I raised two millions. 
Where I could not appear in person, my delegates have supplied my 
place. I have dismissed all the Federalists, dismissed all the suspected, 
put all the Sans Culottes in authority. I have forcibly married all the 
priests, and everywhere e^ctrified the hearts and inflamed the courage 
of the people. I have passed in review numerous battalions of the National 
Guard, to confirm their Republican spirit, and guillotined numbers of the 
Royalists. In a word, I have completely fulfilled my mandate and acted 
everywhere as a warm partisan of the Mountain and faithful represerita 
tive of the Revolution." 

To obliterate as far as possible all former recollections, the Convention 
established a new era, changed the division of the years, and gave new 
names to the months and days. The ancient and sacred institution of 
the Sabbath was abolished ; the period of rest fixed at every tenth day; 
time was measured by divisions of ten days, and the year divided into 
twelve equal months, beginning on the 22nd of September. These 
changes were preparatory to a general abolition of the Christian religion 
and a substitution of the worship of Reason in its stead. 

While these events were in progress, the arm of female enthusiasm 
arrested the course of one of the tyrants. Charlotte Corday, a native of 
Rouen, five-and-twenty years of age, conceived a project of restoring lib- 
erty to her country by the assassination of Marat, and repaired to Paris 
for that purpose. On a pretence of business of the state, she gained 
admission to his presence while he was in a bath and stabbed him with a 
knife. He uttered a loud shriek and expired, when some soldiers rushed 
in, seized Charlotte and conducted her to prison. On her trial, she inter- 
rupted the witnesses, saying, " These formalities are unnecessary ; 1 killed 
Marat." She was condemned to death without delay, and underwent the 
penalty of her crime with the same courage as she exhibited in com- 
mitting it. 


RoDGspierre and his associates made the assassination of Marat the 
ground for increased severity toward the broken remains of the Girondists, 
seventy-three of whom were speedily proscribed and thrown into prison. 

Marie Antoinette, the beautiful and accomplished Queen of France, was 
the next victim. Since the death of the king, the unfortunate royal family 
had been closely confined in the Temple and subjected to new insults and 
deprivations. Their fare was reduced to the humblest kind ; and wicker 
lamps were the only lights and the coarsest habiliments the only dress, 
accorded to them. The young prince was next separated from his mother 
and placed in solitary confinement under the charge of Simon, " What 
am I to do with the child ?" said Simon to the Committee : " banish him ?" 
"No." "Stab him?" "No." " Poison him ?" "No." " What then ?" 
" Get rid of him f" This direction was too faithfully executed. Deprived 
of air, exercise, occupation, the ill-fated prince pined away and died. 

Meantime, the queen, after having been for a while also subjected to 
solitary confinement in a dark and loathsome cell, was brought to trial. 
Few formalities were observed on this occasion. Some witnesses were 
called, but none of them could or would testify anything against her, 
excepting the monsters Hebert and Simon : but she was not the less con- 
demned by her murderous judges. She was conducted to the place of 
execution on the 16th of October, and died with a firmness worthy of 
her race. 

The execution of the queen was followed by a measure of singular 
wantonness and barbarity : namely, the violation of the sepulchres of the 
kings of France and the destruction of the monuments of antiquity through- 
out the kingdom. The Convention next proceeded formally to abjure 
Christianity ; or, in their own phrase, " to dethrone the King of Heaven 
as well as the monarchs of the earth." This monstrous act was consum- 
mated by the Assembly with forms and ceremonies, after which the 
churches were stripped of their ornaments and all their plate was confis- 
cated. The worship of Reason was next established, and the goddess of 
the faith inaugurated in the person of a naked female of abandoned char- 
acter, who was mounted on a magnificent car, conducted in triumph to 
the cathedral of Notre Dame, and there worshipped by the infatuated mob. 

The services of religion were now universally abandoned, and the pul- 
pits deserted throughout the revolutionized districts; baptisms ceased; 
tho burial service was no longer heard ; the sick received no communion; 
the dying, no consolation. The village bells were silent; the Sabbath 
was obliterated ; infancy entered the world without a blessing, and age 
left it without hope. On every tenth day, a Revolutionary preacher 
ascended the pulpit and preached atheism to the bewildered multitude. 
On all the public cemeteries was placed this inscription, " Death is an 
eternal sleep." At the same time, the most sacred relations of life were 
placed on a new .footing. Marriage was declared a civil contract, binding 
only during the pleasure of the contracting parties. A decree of the Con- 
vention also suppressed the academies, public schools and colleges, inclu- 
ding those of medicine and surgery. And in this general havoc, even the 
establishments of charity were not safe. The revenues of the hospitals 
and humane institutions were confiscated and their domains seized as part 
of the national property. 

The Jacobins next proceeded to destroy their former friends and the 
^rliest supporters of the Revolution. Bailly, Custine, and the Duke 



Orleans, with many others of less note, were successively led to the scaf- 
fold ; and ere long Robespierre, finding his individual plans and aggrand- 
izement impeded by his rival, managed to cause the accusation and arrest 
of Danton, with some other powerful antagonists. This last measure pro- 
duced a violent agitation in Paris, and some attempt was made at a rescue, 
but the power of Robespierre was absolute for the time, and Danton and 
Desmoulins were brought to trial. Here, they evinced their wonted firm- 
ness. Danton, being interrogated by the president concerning his age and 
profession, replied, " My name is Danton, well known in the Revolution ; 
my age is thirty-five ; my abode will soon be in nonentity, and my name 
will live in the pantheon of history." Desmoulins, in reply to the same 
question, said he was of the same age " as the Sans Culotte, Jesus Christ, 
when he died." They displayed equal hardihood in their defence, and 
some of the Convention were not a little moved by their denunciations : 
but the influence of Robespierre at last prevailed, and they were con- 
demned. In these cases, as in all the trials of the period, neither crime 
nor proof were essential to conviction : many that fell well deserved to 
die ; but for both innocent and guilty the real question was, not whether 
the parties had committed a crime, but whether a majority of the Con- 
vention desired their death. 

The execution of Danton was followed by immediate and unqualified sub- 
mission in every part of France ; and Robespierre became in truth the 
sole dictator of the Republic. The vigor of his uncontrolled sway was 
soon felt. From an estimate made under his direction, it was ascertained 
that seven thousand prisoners, consisting of men, women and children, were 
on various pretexts now confined in the prisons of Paris, while the total 
throughout France exceeded two hundred thousand. As this number 
involved great expense and inconvenience to the government, and the 
present system of arrest was fast increasing it, it became necessary to 
inspire the Revolutionary Tribunal with new energy that, by accelerating 
the movements of the guillotine, the prisons might be relieved of their 
accumulating burdens. The number of executions, in Paris alone, was 
therefore raised to fifty and finally to eighty in a day : a trench was dug 
as far as the Place St. Antoine to carry off* the blood of the victims, and 
it required the constant labor of four men to keep it in order. 

The insolence of power and the atrocious cruelty of Revolutionary 
revenge were, if possible, more strongly evinced in the provinces than in 
the metropolis. Le Brun especially distinguished himself in the northern 
districts, by the aggravated character as well as by the number of his 
butcheries : upward of two thousand persons were executed by his orders 
in the city of Arras. The career of Carrier at Nantes was still more 
relentless. He caused five hundred children of both sexes, the eldest of 
whom was not fourteen years old, to be led out into one place and shot. 
So deplorable a scene was never before witnessed. The emallness of their 
stature caused most of the bullets, at the first discharge, to fly over their 
heads for the soldier in regular service is taught to fire on the level of 
his own shoulder, and the troops on this occasion did so from the force of 
habit. Immediately, the children broke their bonds, rushed into the ranks 
of their executioners, clung around their knees and prayed for mercy : 
but nothing could soften these assassins, and the helpless innocents were 
slaughtered at their feet. At Lyons, other modes of butchery were in- 
troduced by Collot d'Herbois. Sixty captives were first placed in a line 


by the side of a trench dug for their graves, and two pieces of cannon 
loaded with grape and so placed as to enfilade the line, were discharged 
upon them : those who did not fall or were only wounded by the shot, were 
then dispatched by the gendarmes with sabres. On the following day, 
more than two hundred prisoners were taken into a meadow, fastened to 
each other with cords and dispatched by musketry. These fusillades 
were continued for some days, and in the mean time the guillotine was in 
active operation. 

But there is a limit to human suffering ; an hour when indignant nature 
will no longer submit, and courage arises out of despair. That avenging 
hour was fast approaching. The lengthened files of prisoners daily led 
to the scaffold had long excited the commiseration of the better classes in 
Paris : the shops in the Rue St. Honore were shut and its pavement de- 
serted when the melancholy procession, on its regular route to the guillo- 
tine, passed along : and the people at length became alarmed at the rapid 
progress and evident descent of the proscriptions. While the aristocrats 
and nobility were alone condemned, they looked on at first with joy, and 
afterward with comparative indifference ; but now the extending grasp 
of the tyrant approached their own doors, and they began to deliberate on 
the possibility and the means of assailing Robespierre in the height of his 
power. The majority of the Convention themselves adopted these views ; 
and Robespierre, aware of some hostile movement but ignorant of its ex. 
tent, prepared for a trial of strength with his antagonists. He communi- 
cated his suspicions and purposes to the most trusty Jacobin leaders, and 
at length an insurrection was organized to break out on the 27th of July. 
The leaders of the Convention were not idle : they spent the night of the 
26th in planning their measures, and before daybreak were all firmly 
united for the overthrow of the tyrant. 

At an early hour on the morning of the 27th, the benches were thronged 
by the deputies, and the leaders passed around from one member to another 
to confirm them in their bold resolution. At noon, Robespierre entered 
the hall and took his station near the tribune, in front, so that he might 
intimidate his adversaries by his looks : but notwithstanding the extent of 
his preparations, he was daunted by the appearance of the Assembly : his 
knees trembled, the color fled from his lips, and he seemed already to 
anticipate his fate. 

His minion and advocate, St. Just, took the lead by denouncing his 
enemies ; but he was interrupted by Tallien, who replied in a speech of 
vehement eloquence, boldly recommended extreme measures, and ended 
by drawing a dagger from his bosom and protesting, that if the Convention 
hesitated to pass a decree of accusation against Robespierre, he would 
himself stab him where he sat. 

During this speech, Robespierre sat motionless with terror, and at its 
conclusion he strove in vain to obtain a hearing : the president, Thuriot, 
whom he had often threatened with death, constantly drowned his voice 
by ringing the bell. Various cries of appeal on the one hand and exe- 
cration on the other ensued ; but at length, Robespierre, Le Bas, Couthon } 
St. Just, and others were by a unanimous vote put under arrest and sent 
to prison : the Assembly then broke up at five o'clock in the afternoon. 
No sooner were the partisans of Robespierre aware of his arrest, than they 
sounded the tocsin, mustered their forces, and, proceeding to the prison, 
liberated and bore him in triumph to the Hotel de Ville. The Conven- 


tion reassembled at seven o'clock, resolved to maintain their ground in 
defiance of consequences. They were soon informed that the artillery 
under Henriot, who had also been liberated, was now arrayed against 
them, and the guns were at that moment pointed toward the hall. In this 
extremity, Tallien and his friends acted with the firmness which in revo- 
lutions so often proves successful. He instantly recommended several 
energetic measures which were as promptly adopted, and messengers 
were dispatched to enforce them, when Henriot ordered the artillery to 
fire on the Assembly. The fate of France hung on the decision of these 
men ; and, happily, they refused to obey the order. The aspect of things 
was now entirely changed, and the Convention became the assailants. 
The National Guard declared itself in their favor, marched to the Hotel 
de Ville, overbore all resistance, and Meda, with a few files of soldiers, 
rushed into the apartment where the liberated prisoners were assembled. 
Robespierre was sitting by a table, and Mejla discharged a pistol at him, 
which broke his under jaw, but did not inflict a mortal wound. Le Bas 
shot himself and the rest were taken. The Revolutionary Tribunal made 
but short work with the trial, and the prisoners were all condemned. 

On the morning of July 29th, all Paris was in motion to witness the 
tyrant's death. Twenty of his comrades were executed before him. When 
he ascended the scaffold, the executioner tore the bandage from his face, 
the lower jaw fell on his breast, and he uttered a yell which filled every 
one with horror. He was then placed under the axe, and the last sounds 
which reached his ears were the exulting shouts of the multitude. 

Thus terminated the Reign of Terror : a period fraught with more polit- 
ical instruction than any other period of equal duration since the beginning 
of the world. The extent to which blood was shed during its continuance 
will hardly be credited by future ages : but it is correctly stated that the 
number of victims reached one million, twenty-two thousand, three hundred 
and fifty-one. Of this number, eighteen thousand six hundred and three 
were guillotined by the order of the Revolutionary Tribunals ; thirty-two 
thousand were victims under Carrier, at Nantes ; thirty-one thousand, 
at Lyons ; three thousand four hundred women died of premature child- 
birth ; three hundred and forty-eight in childbirth, from grief; and there 
were slain, during the war in La Vendee (of which an account will pre- 
sently be given,) nine hundred thousand men, fifteen thousand women, 
and twenty -two thousand children. In this enumeration are not com- 
prehended the massacres at Versailles ; at the Abbey, the Carmes and 
other prisons on the 2nd of September ; the victims shot at Toulon and 
Marseilles ; or the persons slain in the little town of Bedoin, of which the 
whole population perished. 



THE district, immortalized by the name of La Vendee, embraces a part 
of Poitou, of Anjou, and of the territory of Nantes. The country differs 
both in its external aspect and the manners of its inhabitants from any 
other part of France. The northern division, called the Bocage, is sprin- 
kled with trees, and is composed chiefly of inconsiderable and detached 
hills surrounded by fertile valleys, and the farms, which are small and 
numerous, are inclosed by stout hedges. The southern part, adjoining 
the ocean, is called the Marais ; it is perfectly flat and interspersed with 
salt-marshes. The whole is mostly a grazing country, and the inhabit- 
ants live on the produce and sale of their cattle. A single great road 
from Nantes to Rochelle traverses the district, and another from Tours to 
Bordeaux diverges from it, leaving between them a space of thirty leagues 
in extent, intersected by innumerable cross-roads, dug out, as it were, 
between two hedges, the branches of which frequently meet over the pas- 
senger's head. This peculiar conformation affords the greatest obstacles 
to an invading army. 

The distinctions between landholder and tenantry, in La Vendee, were 
almost nominal. A moderation of views on the one hand, and an unusual 
degree of virtue and intelligence on the other, combined with a universal 
religious sway that their excellent village pastors held over all, rendered 
the whole people a band of brothers who lived in harmony, detesting every 
species of innovation, and knew no principle in politics or religion but to 
fear God and honor the king. 

Hence it followed that the violence of the Revolutionary party in Paris 
and elsewhere early aroused the indignation of the Vendeans, who uni- 
formly took part with the king ; and the attempt to enforce the levy of 
troops ordered by the Convention in 1793, occasioned a general resistance 
which, without any previous concert, broke out simultaneously over the 
whole of La Vendee. The earlier movements on both sides were con- 
fined to skirmishes between detached parties, in almost all of which the 
Vendeans were successful ; so that the Convention soon found it necessa- 
ry to increase the number of their troops and introduce more system into 
their manner of conducting the war. These measures and the success 
which had induced them, stimulated the Vendeans, also, to renewed exer- 
tions. Large numbers of the hardy peasantry flocked to the royal stand- 
ard, and some of the citizens most distinguished by birth or talent placed 
themselves at the head of the troops. 

M. Bonchamps, commanding the army of Anjou, was among the most 
ftble of the Royalist leaders : to great courage and eloquence he united 
consummate military ability ; and, had his life been spared, would proba- 
bly have proved himself one of the greatest commanders of the age. 
Cathelineau, a peasant by birth ; Henri de Larochejacquelein, son of the 
Marquis of that name ; M. de Lescure, an intimate friend of Larochfjac- 
quelein ; M. d'Elbee, a Saxon ; and Stofflet, an Alsacian, also became dis- 
tinguished as leaders in this war ; and Charette, the last of this illustrious 
band, attained great eminence as a Vendean chief before the conclusion 



of the struggle. The troops commanded by these chiefs were divided into 
three corps, which, with some bodies of reserve, amounted in all to 
nearly seventy thousand men. 

The orders of the Convention to the troops sent to suppress this insur- 
rection, were marked by the bloody spirit which characterized all their 
proceedings : they decreed that those persons who had taken any part in 
the revolt were outlaws, and should be shot within twenty-four hours by a 
military commission ; and that the property of those so shot, together with 
that of all who were slain in battle, should be confiscated. 

But the Republicans soon found that they had a more formidable ene- 
my to contend with in the Vendean army than in the unarmed masses of 
citizens at Paris. The first expedition of the Royalists was directed against 
the city of Thouars, occupied by General Queteneau with a division of 
seven thousand men. The greater part of the troops in this affair were 
undisciplined peasantry ; yet, such was the bravery of the leaders and the 
devotion of the men, the town was carried by assault, and six thousand 
prisoners, with twelve pieces of cannon and twenty caissons, fell into the 
hands of the Royalists : nor is it the least remarkable feature of this vic- 
tory, that not an inhabitant of the place was maltreated nor a house pil- 
laged. The Vendeans next advanced against Chataignerie, which was gar- 
risoned by four thousand Republicans, and carried it by a vigorous attack ; 
but in this instance the garrison, after suffering severe loss, escaped 
to Fontenay, where the Royalists followed them. The attack on this 
latter town was at first unsuccessful : for the peasants, unused to long 
marches and satisfied with what they had achieved, disbanded themselves 
in large masses and returned to their homes, so that the army was re- 
duced to an inefficiency of numbers, and compelled to fall back to Cha- 
taignerie. The services of the clergy were, however, called to the aid 
of the army ; and the peasantry, giving more heed to their spiritual than to 
their temporal leaders, rejoined their standards. The combat could now be 
renewed on more equal terms, and the Royalists again advanced to Fon- 
teriay, where the Republicans, ten thousand strong with forty pieces of ar- 
tillery, were drawn up to receive them. Bonchamps commanded the right, 
Cathelineau the centre, and d'Elbee the left, while Larochejacquelein led 
a small but determined body of cavalry. At first, the Vendeans faltered 
under the sustained discharge of grape shot from the Republican batte- 
ries ; but Lescure walked forward toward the guns, remained for some 
moments in the very midst of the iron storm, and cried out to his men that 
they could see from his standing there in safety that the Republicans did 
not know how to fire. The men then rallied, followed him to the muzzles 
of the guns and drove the artillerymen into the town. Lescure still led 
the pursuit : his troops entered Fontenay with the fugitives and he himself 
was the first Royalist within the gates. The town immediately surren- 
dered with its artillery, stores, and ammunition ; and the greater part, of 
the Republican army were made prisoners. 

The Royalists became now much perplexed about the disposal of their 
prisoners, of whom they had several thousands. To retain them in cus- 
tody was impossible, as they had no fortified places within their own lim- 
its ; to follow the example of the Republicans and murder them, was out 
of the question ; at length it was decided to shave their heads and send 
them home, a proceeding that caused no small merriment to the soldiers. 

The Vendeans were also successful in other quarters. They gained 


victories at Vetiers, Dong and Montreuil ; and at length, resolved to at- 
tack the important city of Saunmr, where the Republicans were assembled 
to the number of twenty-two thousand regular troops, besides a large body 
of National Guards. The Royalist army, forty thousand strong, approached 
Saumur on the 10th of June. While the officers were concerting a 
plan of attack, the enthusiastic peasants threw themselves without orders 
on the advanced guard of the Republicans, and actually made their way 
into the town in great numbers : but as they acted without leaders and 
without system, they could not improve their advantage and were driven 
back. Such troops, however, are easily rallied. The officers took com- 
mand of the retreating mass, led them back in order, and after a desperate 
contest, carried the town. This victory was more important than any that 
had yet been gained over the Republicans by the allied sovereigns of Eu- 
rope. Eighty pieces of cannon, ten thousand muskets, and more than 
twelve thousand prisoners fell into the hands of the Vendeans, while their 
own loss was but sixty men killed and four hundred wpunded. The vic- 
tors, as before, shaved the heads of their prisoners and sent them home, 
stipulating only that they should not serve against La Vendee : an illu- 
sory condition, speedily violated by the bad faith of the Republicans. 

The Royalist leaders, flushed with victory, now advanced on Nantes, 
although a second time the peasants, tired of the war, had withdrawn 
from the ranks in great numbers. But the expedition ended in disaster. 
Cathelineau was mortally wounded, and the assault repulsed with consid- 
erable loss to the Vendeans. 

In the mean time, the Republicans took the offensive, and sent a consid- 
erable army under Westerman into the heart of La Vendee. The inva- 
sion was at first successful ; three towns were taken and burned ; but the 
brave peasantry gathered round their assailants, harassed them, and 
finally drove Westerman before them with the loss of two-thirds of his 
forces. A second invasion under Biron with fifty thousand troops, met 
with a similar reverse : he was defeated with the loss of ten thousand men 
and all his artillery, baggage and ammunition. But these defeats had the 
natural effect of exasperating a comparatively powerful government, who 
had large resources in men and material at their control. The Conven- 
tion therefore redoubled their efforts to subdue the refractory insurgents. 
Fourteen thousand men, under Kleber, were directed upon La Vendee, a 
great part of the garrisons of Valenciennes and Conde were marched to 
the same quarter, and the National Guard, together with a levy en masse 
of the neighboring departments, soon followed in the same direction. Be- 
fore the middle of September, two hundred thousand men surrounded La 
Vendee and threatened to crush it by a simultaneous assault. For a time, 
they were successful, having defeated the Royalists in several small en- 
gagements and laid waste with fire and sword the districts they traversed. 
At length, however, Kleber encountered Charette and Bonchamps near 
Torfou, where after a well contested action he was defeated, and but for 
the devotion of Colonel Chouardin and his regiment, who maintained the 
bridge of Boussay and suffered themselves to be wholly destroyed in its 
defence, his army would have been annihilated. The Royalists followed 
this up by an attack on General Beysser, at Montaigut, on General Mu- 
kierski, at St. Fulgent, and on the retreating columns of Kleber, in every 
one of which battles they defeated the invaders with the loss of prisoners, 
^ ammunition, and artillery. They were equally successful ID 


other quarters, and the Republican forces quitted the province within a 
fortnight from the time they entered it. Thus, by a series of the most 
brilliant combinations, seconded by the heroic exertions of the peasants, 
an invasion of one hundred thousand regular troops and a larger number 
of undisciplined levies, was defeated, and losses inflicted on the invaders 
far exceeding the entire loss that they had sustained from the allies in a 
whole year's campaign. 

But valor cannot contend always against innumerable odds : and the 
unfortunate Vendeans were opposed by the resources of a whole nation. 
The Convention, now fully aware of the danger of this protracted war, 
once more resolved to terminate it at a blow. The Republican armies 
again entered the devoted territory in great force ; retook the towns in 
their march ; devastated the land ; and in two successive battles defeated 
the Vendeans, who, in addition to their other losses, were deprived of the 
services of three of their principal leaders Lescure, d'Elbee and Bon- 
champs, being mortally wounded. In every quarter, the march of the 
Republicans was disgraced by atrocious cruelty : every town and village 
was burned to the ground, and the inhabitants, without distinction of sex 
or age, put to the sword. The deplorable condition of the province, at 
this time, was thus represented to the Convention by Bourbotte and Tur- 
reau : " We may say with truth that La Vendee no longer exists. A 
profound solitude reigns in the country recently occupied by the rebels : 
you may travel far in those districts without meeting a dwelling or a 
living creature ; for, with the exception of Cholet, St. Florent, and some 
Hittle towns, where the number of Patriots greatly exceeds that of the 
Royalists, we have left behind us nothing but ashes and piles of dead." 

Yet, fortune had not wholly abandoned the Vendeans : for, on the 23rd 
of October, their retreating forces encountered a large body of Republican 
veterans under general Lechelle, and, after a desperate action, totally 
overthrew them, destroying no less than twelve thousand of their troopg 
and capturing nineteen pieces of cannon. General Lechelle was so 
overwhelmed by this disaster, that he resigned his command in despair 
and retired to Tours, where he soon after died from anxiety and chagrin. 

This astonishing victory was gained on the very day that Bourbotte 
and Turreau had triumphantly announced to the Convention in Paris 
that La Vendee no longer existed : it may be imagined with what con- 
sternation they, a few days afterward received intelligence that the 
Republican army was destroyed and nothing remained to prevent the 
advance of the Royalists upon the capital. 

After resting a few weeks to recruit their numbers and repair their 
various losses, the Royalists, November 14th, advanced upon Granville ; 
here they met with a repulse and lost eighteen hundred men. On their 
retreat, they took the road of Pontorson, where they arrived on the 19th 
of November, and found eighteen thousand Republicans drawn up to in- 
tercept them ; but the Vendeans drove them through the streets at the 
point of the bayonet, and captured their baggage and artillery. The 
Republicans now retreated to Dol, where their numbers were raised by 
reinforcement to thirty-five thousand men. The Royalists pursued and 
attacked them in the streets at midnight. A horrible melee ensued, in 
which the Vendean women and children who, driven from their homes 
by the Republicans, in October, had been since forced to follow the for- 
tunes of the army were trampled and destroyed by thousands. 


The victory, however, was with the Royalists, and the Republicans 
retreated to Antrain, where they again endeavored to make head against 
their conquerors. But the Royalists followed up their success, entered 
the town pell-mell with the fugitives, and made prisoners of the whole 
army. There was now great danger that an indiscriminate massacre 
would ensue, for the Royalist troops were wrought up by the precedent 
cruelties of the Republicans to the highest pitch of exasperation. But in 
this, as in all cases when the Royalists were victorious, humanity pre- 
vailed over retributive vengeance : the prisoners and the wounded were 
treated with the same care as their own soldiers, and sent home without 
exchange or condition. 

Yet these victories, brilliant as they were in a military point of view, 
were of no permanent advantage to the brave Royalists ; who, in a 
foreign province, accompanied by their proscribed families, and en- 
cumbered with sick and wounded men, women and children, were forced 
to continue a retreat that, after all, promised them neither safety nor 
repose. After many painful marches, in which they were harassed and 
occasionally defeated by the accumulating forces of the Republicans, and 
during which they of necessity abandoned their women, children and 
stragglers to be butchered by their pursuers, they arrived at Mons in the 
last degree of fatigue, depression and suffering. Here they were com- 
pelled to halt from mere inability to proceed, and they thus gave the 
Republican generals time to concert measures for their destruction. It 
was not long delayed. Marceau, Westerman and Kleber speedily as- 
sembled forty thousand men, and attacked the town with the utmost im- 
petuosity. The Royalist troops made a heroic but unavailing defence ; 
they were routed and scattered through the town, and the Republicans 
commenced an indiscriminate massacre. Ten thousand soldiers and an 
equal number of women and children perished in this horrible carnage, 
and a remnant only of the army made good its retreat to Savenay. Here 
some ten thousand men, of whom but six thousand were armed, took their 
last stand. For a long time they held the Republican columns in check, 
and when at length obliged to retire, they fell back in good order, and served 
the few pieces of artillery they had left until the last cartridge was dis- 
charged : even then, the rear-guard continued to fight with their swords 
and bayonets till they all sunk under the fire of the Republicans. Of 
eighty thousand souls, who, but six weeks before, had crossed the Loire, 
scarcely three thousand, in straggling parties, ever returned to La Vendee. 

With these disasters, the Vendean war ceased for a time ; and it would 
never have revived, had the Republicans made a humane use of their 
bloody victory. But the darkest period of the tragedy was approaching, 
and in the rear of the armies came those fiends in human form who 
exceeded the crimes even of Marat and Robespierre, and whose deeds 
have left a deeper stain on the annals of France than the massacreof St. 
Bartholomew, or all the preceding horrors of the Revolution. Their 
atrocities took away hope from the vanquished ; and, in revenge and 
despair, the Chouan bands sprung up, who, under Charette, Stofflet and 
Tinteniac, long maintained the Royal cause in the Western Provinces. 

Thurreau was the first who commenced against the Vendeans a sys- 
tematic war of extermination. He formed twelve corps, aptly denomi- 
nated infernal columns, whose orders were to traverse the country in 
every direction, isolate it from all communication with the rest of the 


world, carry off or destroy all the grain and cattle, murder all the inhab- 
itants and burn all the houses. These orders were but too faithfully 
executed, though at intervals Charette descended from his fastnesses and 
took a bloody revenge on detached parties of the invaders. 

While Thurreau was pursuing this system of extermination in La 
Vendee, the scaffold was erected at Nantes, and those infernal executions 
commenced, which fill the blackest page in the history of the world. A 
Revolutionary Tribunal was established there, of which Carrier was the 
presiding demon Carrier, known in all nations as the inventor of that 
last of barbarous atrocities, the Republican Marriage, in which two per- 
sons of different sexes, generally an old man and an old woman, or a 
young man and a young woman, bereft of every kind of clothing, were 
bound together before the multitude, exposed in a boat in that situation 
for half an hour or more, and then thrown into the river. It was ascer- 
tained by authentic documents that,Jn addition to the adults, six hundred 
children perished in this horrible manner: and such was the quantity of 
corpses accumulated in the Loire, that the water became infected, and 
a public ordinance was issued forbidding its use. For a long time after- 
ward, mariners, when heaving their anchors in that vicinity, frequently 
brought up the ghastly remains of the murdered victims. 



THE year 1793, was distinguished by the novel measure of treaties oi 
alliance between England, Russia, Austria, Prussia, Spain, Naples, 
Sardinia and Portugal all Europe, in short, against Republican France ; 
and thus did the regicides of that country, as the first fruit of their 
murderous triumph, find themselves excluded from the pale of civilized 
nations. The force of the allies was three hundred and sixty-four thou- 
sand men acting on the whole circumference of France, from Calais to 
Bayonne ; and that of the Republicans amounted to two hundred and 
twenty thousand men, inferior troops for the most part, but possessing the 
advantage of unity of language, government and public feeling, and adding 
to these the important fact of acting in an interior and concentric circle, 
which enables one corps rapidly to communicate with and support an- 
other an advantage of which the allies, by being spread over a much 
larger circumference, were deprived. But both the contending parties 
labored under some serious embarassments. On the part of the allies, 
there was that want of union so common and so fatal to a combination of 
national interests. Russia, especially, one of the most important powers 
of the league, was at that time more anxious to complete the subjugation 
of despoiled Poland than to resist the arms of Revolutionary France, and 
the views of Prussia, too, were partly turned in the same direction, while 
between Prussia and Austria jealousies existed as to their relative posi- 
tion in the allied army. On this point, Prussia went so far as to de- 
mand a division of the forces of the inferior powers of the league, a part 



of whom should be joined to an independent Prussian, and another part 
to an independent Austrian army. Thus, entire unity of purpose, the 
quality most essential to victory, was wanting in the allied armies from 
the outset, and another serious evil, incidental to this, soon developed 
itself; namely, the want of union between the superior, led to a want of 
zeal in the inferior, powers. In addition to all this, Prince Cobourg, a 
man every way ill qualified for such a command, was appointed general- 
issimo of the allied forces. 

On the other hand, the French armies had great difficulties of their 
own to contend with. The troops, during the winter, following the ex- 
ample of the factious inhabitants at Paris, resisted all subordination, 
lost their discipline, and were, at the opening of the campaign, miserably 
deficient in every species of equipment. 

To support the prodigious expense of a war on all their frontiers, 
would greatly have exceeded the ordinary and legitimate resources of 
the French government : but, contrary alike to precedent and anticipa- 
tion, they derived, from the miseries and convulsions of the Revolution, 
the means of creating new resources. The period had arrived in France, 
when all calculation in matter of finance was to cease ; for the inex- 
haustible mine of assignats, possessing a forced circulation and issued on 
the credit of the national domains, necessarily proved sufficient for every 

In February of this year, the French, under Miranda, opened the 
campaign by laying siege to Maestricht, but with forces inadequate to so 
great an undertaking. The first movement of the Austrians was to raise 
the siege with an army of fifty-two thousand men under Prince Cobourg, 
with whom was the young ARCHDUKE CHARLES, at the head of the grena- 
diers. On the 1st and 2nd of March, the Austrians along the whole line 
attacked the French cantonments, and, after an inconsiderable resistance, 
succeeded in driving them back and in many points throwing them into 
utter confusion. The French troops were immediately seized with the 
discouragement so common at this period, whenever they experienced 
a considerable reverse. Whole battalions fled in disorder into France, 
officers quitted their troops, soldiers disbanded from their officers ; the 
siege of Maestricht was raised, the heavy artillery dispatched in haste 
toward Brussels, and the army driven beyond the Meuse with a loss of 
seven thousand men in killed, wounded and prisoners. On the 4th of 
March, the Republicans were again routed near Liege, and a large part 
of the heavy artillery was there abandoned. A few days after, Tongres 
was carried by the Archduke Charles at the head of twelve thousand 
men, and the whole army fell back upon Tirlemont, and thence to Lou- 
vain, where Dumourier arrived from the Dutch frontier and resumed the 
command. The Austrians then desisted from the pursuit, satisfied with 
their success, and not deeming themselves sufficiently strong to force the 
united corps of the French army in that city. 

Dumourier found the army, consisting now of forty-five thousand men, 
in the utmost disorganization, but he immediately adopted measures of 
reform ; and, to restore the confidence of the soldiers, resolved to com- 
mence offensive operations. He was not long in finding an opportunity. 
He fell in with a detachment of Austrians near Tirlemont, and defeated 
them with a loss of twelve hundred men, after which he prepared to risk 
a general action. 


The Austrians, thirty-nine thousand strong, including nine thousand 
cavalry, determined not to decline the combat, and concentrated their 
forces along a position about two leagues in length, near the village of 
Nerwinde. The battle took place on the 18th of March, and was eon- 
tested with much spirit and varied success; but the Austrians eventually 
remained masters of the field, having sustained a loss of two thousand 
men, and inflicted one of two thousand five hundred killed and wounded, 
besides fifteen hundred prisoners. This defeat, not very serious in itself, 
proved disastrous to the French army, inasmuch as it destroyed their 
reviving spirits, induced large bodies of them to disband, and forced 
Dumourier to retreat upon Brussels, Antwerp and Mechlin. 

Soon after, conferences were opened between Dumourier and the Aus- 
trian generals, in virtue of which it was agreed that the French should 
retire behind Brussels without being molested in their retreat. The 
French army, accordingly, evacuated Brussels and Mechlin and retired 
toward the French frontier. But it soon appeared that these movements 
were made in reference to something more than military objects; for 
Dumourier was now really anxious, as on a former occasion he pre- 
tended to be, to restore a constitutional monarchy ; and he proposed to- 
march to Paris in concert with the allies, to accomplish this project. 
Having thus actually embarked in this perilous undertaking, Dumou- 
rier's first care was to secure the fortresses on which the success of his 
enterprise depended. But here he made shipwreck. The garrisons of 
Coride and Valenciennes refused to abandon the Republic, and Dumou- 
rier, finding his plans discovered at Paris, and himself likely to be 
betrayed, was forced to take refuge in the Austrian lines. 

A congress of ministers of the allied powers soon after assembled 
at Antwerp, attended by Metternich and Stahrenberg on the part of 
Austria, Lord Auckland on the part of England, and Count Keller on 
the part of Russia. Such was the confidence inspired by recent events, 
that these ministers imagined the last days of the Convention were at 
hand ; and, in truth, so they would have been, had the ministers intro- 
duced a little more vigor, unanimity and wisdom into their military 
operations. Unfortunately, they came to the resolution of changing the 
object of the war, and openly announced the necessity of providing in- 
demnities and securities for the allied powers ; in other words, partitioning 
the frontier territories of France among the invading States : and when 
Valenciennes and Conde were taken, the standard, not of Louis XVII., 
but of Austria, was hoisted on their walls. This injudicious measure 
converted the war from one of liberation to one of aggrandizement, and 
gave the Jacobins of Paris too good reason to assert that the dismember, 
ment of their country was at hand, and that all patriots, whether Repub- 
licans or Royalists, must join against the common enemy. 

The Convention took vigorous measures to promulgate this popular 
view of the contest and to sustain it with a requisite force. A camp of 
forty thousand men was ordered to form a reserve for the army, a le\y of 
three hundred thousand men, already decreed, was hastened forward, and 
sixty representatives of the Convention were appointed to serve as vice- 
roys over the generals in all the armies. No less than twelve of these 
viceroys were directed to proceed to the army of the North. No limit 
was fixed to their authority ; but, armed with the despotic power of the 
Convention, and supported by a Republican and mutinous soldiery, they 


with equal facility, placed the generals on a triumphal car or sent them 
to the scaffold. 

Meantime, fortune was not more propitious to the French arms on the 
eastern than on the northern frontier. Their forces in that quarter, at 
the opening of the campaign, were greatly outnumbered by the allies : 
the entire Prussian and Austrian forces amounting to ninety-five thousand 
men. while the French, under Custine, had not over forty-five thousand 
in die field, and forty thousand in the garrisons of the Upper Rhine. The 
campaign was opened on the 24th of March, by a movement of the King 
of Prussia across the Rhine at Rheinfels, where he encountered and de- 
feated Custine, who, after several days of retreat and partial actions, was 
compelled to fall back to the lines of Weissenberg, leaving Mayence to its 
own resources. The allies made immediate preparations for the siege of 
this important fortress, and, after an investment of nearly four months, the 
garrison capitulated on the 22nd of July. 

On the 1st of May, the Republicans resumed the offensive on the 
Flemish frontier by an attack, under General Dampierre, on the allied 
position ; but they were repulsed, with a loss of two thousand men and a 
large quantity of artillery. On the 8th, the French attacked the allies 
along their whole line, but they were everywhere unsuccessful, except 
at the wood of Vicogne, where they forced the Prussians to retreat until the 
arrival of the English guards changed the aspect of the day. The latter 
drove back the French with a loss of four thousand men and reestablished 
the Prussians in their position. This action took place within a few miles 
of Waterloo, and it was the first, time that the English and French soldiers 
came into collision during the war. These disasters checked the spirit 
of the Republicans and induced them to relinquish offensive operations. 
They intrenched themselves at Famars, in a position to cover the city of 
Valenciennes. But the allies were now in a condition to disturb them, 
and advanced, eighty thousand strong, under the Duke of York, Ferrari, 
Abercomby and Walmoden. Their attacks prevailed at all points ; and 
the French, during the night, fell back to the "Camp of Caesar," leaving 
Valenciennes to its fate. This important city and Conde were invested 
by the allies, and both fell successively into their hands within a few 
weeks. The capitulation of these two fortresses brought to light, as has 
already been related, the fatal change in the object and policy of the 
war, which had been agreed on in the Congress of Antwerp : and its effect 
was doubly injurious, not only by rousing the patriotism of the French, 
but by cooling the ardor of the allies; for, from the moment that the 
Emperor of Austria took possession of Valenciennes and Conde in his Own 
name, the several allied parties became jealous of him and of each other. 
They did not, however, wholly relax in their efforts to continue the war, 
but, following up the retreat of the French, they attacked them in the 
Camp of Csesar, on the 8th of August, and routed them with so much ease 
that the affair could hardly be called a battle. 

The allies were now in great force within one hundred and sixty miles 
of Paris, and there was no serious obstacle between them and that metro, 
polis. They might have reached its gates within fifteen days , and, had 
they moved forward with energy before the French recovered from their 
consternation, the war would have been terminated at a blow. But the 
unhappy dissensions which now prevailed in the allied counsels prevented 
this bold and decisive measure, and France gained time to organize an 
effectual resistance. 7 


Under the despotic control of the Convention, the whole kingdom was 
suddenly converted into an immense workshop, resounding with the note 
of military preparation. Manufactories of stores and arms were estab- 
lished, horses and provisions seized, and no less than twelve hundred thou- 
sand men forced into the ranks of the army. In this last measure, fear 
was the efficient engine of success : the recruits had to choose between the 
army and the prisons of the Revolution and the bayonets of the allies 
appeared to them much less formidable than the guillotine of the Conven- 
tion. Of the finances of the country, it is sufficient to say, as has already 
been said, the debts and expenses of the government were paid in paper 
money, issued without cost and circulated under the mandate of the Revo- 
lutionary Tribunal. 

At the head of the military department was Carnot, a man whose ex- 
traordinary talents and unbending character contributed greatly to the 
success of the revolutionary wars. It was his misfortune to be associated 
with Robespierre in the Committee of Public Safety, and his name conse- 
quently stands affixed to many of the worst acts of that sanguinary tribu- 
nal : but he has asserted, and his character entitles the allegation to atten- 
tion, that in the pressure of business he signed those documents without 
knowing what they contained, and that he saved more lives by his entreat- 
ies than his colleagues destroyed by their severity. He was the origin- 
ator of that great improvement in the military art which Dumourier first 
practiced, and Napoleon brought to perfection : the rapid concentration, 
namely, of superior force on a given point, by which movement the ene- 
my's line is broken, flanked and defeated. 

The allies, having declined to strike a decisive blow while their antag- 
onists were dispersed in small bodies over the country, unwisely exposed 
themselves to a similar blow from the Republicans, by dividing their own 
forces and pursuing separate objects. The English laid siege to Dunkirk, 
the Austrians to Quesnoy, and the remainder of the allied army was 
broken into detachments to preserve the communications. The Austrian 
expedition was successful, Quesnoy having capitulated fifteen days after the 
trenches were opened, and its garrison of four thousand men surrendered 
as prisoners of war ; while two columns of ten thousand men each, sent 
to raise the siege, were defeated with great loss. But a different fate 
awaited the British besieging army. Their approaches were needlessly 
delayed and unskilfully conducted, and after having been set down before 
Dunkirk for nearly three weeks, they had made no progress of importance. 
At the end of that time, General Houchard arrived with fifty thousand 
French troops to relieve the city. The situation of the English and 
of the detachments of allies who covered their position, was such as to 
give a vigorous attack every chance of success : Freytag with eighteen 
thousand Austrians being posted at a considerable distance in the rear, and 
the Dutch, under the Prince of Orange, were at Menin, three days' march 
from the English lines. Had Houchard implicitly obeyed his instructions 
from the Convention, he must have destroyed each of the three armies in 
detail. As it resulted, however, he defeated only the Austrian corps, who 
sustained a loss of fifteen hundred men ; on which the Duke of York, 
finding his position untenable, withdrew in the night, leaving behind him 
fifty-two pieces of heavy artillery and a large quantity of ammunition and 
baggage. Houchard, satisfied with having raised the siege, did not follow 
up his advantage with spirit ; but contented himself with an attack on the 

1793.] HIS TORY OF EUROPE. 49 

Dutch at Melin, whom he defeated. But he was in turn assailed by Gen 
eral Beaulieu at Courtray, totally routed and driven behind the Lys. Noi 
did the disaster to the French end there : for a panic ensued on this first 
reverse which communicated itself to all the Republican troops in that quar- 
ter, who thereupon tumultuously fled for refuge under the cannon of Lisle. 
This defeat proved fatal to Houchard. He was summoned to Paris, tried 
before the Revolutionary Tribunal, condemned and executed a proceed- 
ing interesting chiefly from the evidence it affords, of the clear perception 
which those at the head of the government had obtained of the true prin- 
ciples of the military art. " The Committee," said Barere to Houchard, 
" instructed you to accumulate your troops in large masses on particular 
points and defeat the enemy in detail : you disregarded their orders, and 
have been yourself defeated." 

The allies next laid siege to Maubeage, the possession of which now 
became an object of capital importance, and their measures were taken 
on a scale proportionate to the magnitude of the undertaking. 

Under all these discouraging circumstances, the Committee of Public 
Safety did not despair. They gave the command of the army of the north 
to Jourdan, a young officer, hitherto untried, but who, placed between vic- 
tory and the scaffold, had sufficient confidence in his own talents to accept 
the perilous alternative. He promptly approached the Austrian position, 
and after some skirmishing a general action took place on the 15th of 
October, in which the Republicans were worsted with a loss of twelve 
hundred men. Instructed by his failure that a change in his method of 
attack was indispensable, Jourdan, in the night accumulated his forces 
against the village of Wattignies, the key of the Austrian position, and 
on the morning of the 16th assailed it with three columns supported by a 
concentric fire of artillery. The village was speedily carried and Cobourg 
retreated with a loss of six thousand men. The siege having been thus 
raised, Jourdan established his winter-quarters at Guice, where a vast 
intrenched camp was formed for the protection, and discipline of the 
revolutionary recruits, who were daily arriving in large masses from 
the interior. 

After the' capture of Mayence, the allies on the Rhine relapsed into in- 
activity, although their army in that quarter amounted to over one hundred 
thousand men in excellent condition. The Convention, however, wearied 
with the torpor of their enemies, ordered Moreau, who was in command of 
the French on the Moselle, to attack the Prussian corps at Permasin. 
The Republicans advanced with great intrepidity to the Prussian redoubts, 
when they were arrested in front by a terrible fire of grape, and their 
flank was at the same time assailed by the Duke of Brunswick : they im- 
mediately gave way and precipitated themselves into the neighboring ra- 
vines, leaving behind them four thousand men and twenty-two pieces of 
cannon. A few days after this affair, the King of Prussia repaired to Po- 
land, to pursue in concert with Russia his plans of aggrandizement at the 
expense of that unhappy country, leaving the Duke of Brunswick in com- 
mand of the army. The French retired to the ancient and celebrated 
lines of Weissenberg, constructed in former times for the protection of the 
Rhenish frontier from German invasion : they stretched from the town of 
Lauterburg on the Rhine, through the village of Weissenberg to the Vos- 
ges mountains, and closed all access from that side into Alsace. A simul- 
taneous assault was made by the Prussians on the left of this position; 


by the Austrians, under Prince Waldeck, on the right; and by Wurmser, 
with the main body of Austrians, on the centre. These attacks prevailed 
at all points, and the French retreated in confusion ; but the pursuit of the 
allies was so tardy that only one thousand prisoners fell into their hands. 
Still, the victory was important, as it again opened a free road to the inva- 
ders. Wurmser proceeded to Strasburg, which the constituted authorities 
of that town offered to surrender to the Austrians in the name of Louis 
XVII. : but Wurmser, not being empowered to make conditional conquests, 
declined their proposal ; and, being unable to reduce the place by force, 
withdrew to Fort Vauban, which he took with its garrison of three 
thousand men, and afterward blockaded Landau. The inhabitants of 
Strasburg, thus abandoned to their fate, experienced the full weight oi 
Republican vengeance in return for their proposals to Wurmser. Seventy 
persons of the most distinguished families were put to death, and terror 
and confiscation reinstated the sway of the Convention over the unhappy 

The secession of Prussia from the confederation now became more and 
more manifest. On his return to Berlin, Frederic William was assailed 
by so many representations from his ministers as to the deplorable state 
of the finances, and the exhaustion of the national strength in a contest 
foreign to the real interests of the kingdom, and that, too, at a time when 
the affairs of Poland required all his resources and attention, that he at 
first adopted the resolution to recall all his troops from the Rhine. The 
cabinet of Vienna made the strongest remonstrances against this defec- 
tion, in which they were so well seconded by the cabinets of London and 
St. Petersburg, th&t the resolution was rescinded. Nevertheless, orders 
were given to the. Duke of Brunswick to temporize as much as possible, 
and engage the troops in no serious enterprise or any conquest which 
might turn to the advantage of the Austrians : the effect of which soon 
appeared, in the removal of the Prussian mortars and cannons from the 
lines before Landau. The French, meanwhile, made preparations to 
relieve that place from its besiegers. Thirty thousand men from the 
armies of the Moselle and the Rhine were directed thither under Pichegru, 
and these were supported by thirty -five thousand under General Hoche, 
who advanced from the side of La Sarre. After some preparatory move- 
ments and partial actions, the Republicans, on the 26th of December, 
attacked the covering army of the Duke of Brunswick. The allies, com- 
batting with a divided purpose, were easily driven from their position, 
raised the blockade of Landau, and crossed to the right bank of the Rhine 
at Philipsberg. Fort Vaubari was evacuated, Spire and Worms were 
reconquered by the French, who advanced to the gates of Manheim, and 
Germany, so recently victorious, was now threatened on its own fron- 

The campaign on the Spanish frontier, during this year, was charac- 
terized by some events of military importance. The Spanish government 
made vigorous efforts to increase their forces in February, and the zeal 
arid patriotism of the inhabitants soon enabled them to put on foot two con- 
siderable armies ; one of thirty thousand, destined to invade Roussillon, and 
the other of twenty-five thousand, to advance on the side of Bayonne, by the 
Bidossoa. The latter army commenced its offensive operations on the 14th 
of April, by a partial attack on the French camp, which was followed 
by a more serious action, on the 1st of May, when the French were 


forced back from one of their positions, with a loss of fifteen pieces of 
cannon ; and on the 6th of June, they were driven from a second intrench- 
ment, and abandoned all their artillery and ammunition. They, however, 
ivere not yet discouraged : but, after reorganizing their forces, themselves 
assumed the offensive, and, on the 29th of August, made a spirited attack 
on the Spanish posts fortified within the territory of France : but they were 
repulsed with such loss that they could not renew the strife during the 
remainder of the campaign. 

The success of the army on the eastern side of the frontier was more 
varied. The Spaniards, under Don Ricardos, invaded Roussillon in the 
middle of April, and, on the 21st, they made a general attack on the 
French camp, which ended in the defeat of the Republicans. Soon after, 
the forts of Bellegrade and Villa Franca were taken ; and Ricardos, 
pursuing his advantage, attacked a large body of French at Millas, who 
were totally defeated and lost fifteen pieces of cannon. But the French, 
by great exertions, assembled a reenforcement of fresh troops in this 
quarter, and fell upon a corps of six thousand Spaniards under Don Juan 
Comten. The Spaniards made a brave defence, but they were over- 
powered by numbers, and, at length, lost one thousand men killed, fifteen 
hundred prisoners, and all their artillery and camp equipage. Elated by 
this victory, the French, under the command of Dagobert, resolved to at- 
tack the entire Spanish army at Truellas. This battle took place on the 
22nd of September, and it ended in the total defeat of the French, with a 
loss of four thousand men and ten pieces of artillery. After this disaster, 
Dagobert was displaced, and Davoust, with fifteen thousand fresh troops, 
appointed to the command. Several trifling actions ensued, without any 
decisive advantage on either side, until the 7th of December, when Ri- 
cardos attacked the French lines and totally defeated the Republican 
army, capturing forty-six pieces of cannon and twenty-five hundred pris- 
oners. He followed up this victory with great promptness, attacked and 
took the town of Port Vendre with all its artillery, and soon after com- 
pelled Coillure to surrender, with more than eighty pieces of cannon ; 
while the Marquis Amarillas overthrew the right of the French forces, 
and so terrified those inexperienced troops by his assault, that whole bat- 
talions disbanded themselves, and fled in confusion under the guns of 

The campaign in the districts of the maritime Alps was feebly con- 
ducted on both sides ; it consisted of a few trifling actions, and resulted in 
no event of importance. But while the operations of the allies, in this 
quarter, were thus inefficient, the efforts of the French to shake off the 
yoke of the Convention, were of a more decided character. Marseilles, 
Toulon and Lyons, openly espoused the Girondist cause ; and, in the 
month of July, two of the Jacobin leaders were put to death. From that 
moment, the inhabitants of these towns, knowing that they were doomed 
to Jacobin vengeance, began to cast cannon, raise intrenchments, and 
make every preparation tor a vigorous defence. Marseilles was the first 
to suffer for this imprudence. The troops of the Convention reached it 
before the inhabitants were fully prepared for resistance, defeated the 
insurrection, and established the guillotine in bloody sovereignty. The 
next attack of the Jacobins was at Lyons, where the revolt was better 
organized and the insurrectionists better prepared for defence. During 
tlie whole of August and part of September, the besiegers made but little 


progress, and the Convention, alarmed at the protracted resistance of the 
town, directed immediate preparations on a larger scale for its reduction. 
A hundred pieces of cannon, drawn from the arsenals of Besancon and 
Grenoble, were mounted on the besieging batteries ; veteran troops were 
dispatched thither from the frontiers of Piedmont, and on the 24th of Sep- 
tember a terrible bombardment and cannonade with red hot shot was 
commenced, which continued without intermission for a whole week. The 
result of this attack was terrible to the inhabitants of the city : night and 
day the flaming tempest fell on them, burning their houses, destroying their 
magazines, and scattering death among them in a thousand forms. Still, 
their courage faltered not, nor did the garrison slacken iri their defence. 
Soon, famine was added to their sufferings ; and, in the mean time, the 
Convention, exasperated at their obstinacy, displaced Kellerman, who 
had hitherto conducted the siege, increased the attacking army to sixty 
thousand, and placing General Coppet at their head, ordered him to re- 
duce Lyons instantly by fire and sword. These measures finally pre- 
vailed. The garrison and citizens had maintained their position, until 
their provisions of every sort were entirely exhausted and a large portion 
of the town was laid in ashes by the bombs and hot shot of the enemy. 
Surrender, therefore, became inevitable; but even in this extremity, the 
brave Precy, who had so nobly directed the defence, refused to submit. 
He resolved to force his way at the head of a chosen band, through the 
enemy's lines, and seek in foreign climes that freedom that had departed 
from France. On the night of" the 9th of October, the heroic column, 
consisting of two thousand men, with their wives and children, set forth 
on this perilous march. As they proceeded, they found themselves 
enveloped on every side by cavalry, infantry and artillery, and they were 
indiscriminately massacred ; of the whole number scarcely fifty forced 
their way with Precy into the Swiss territories. 

On the following day, the Republicans took possession of the city, and 
Couthon, entering at the head of the authorities of the Convention, rein- 
stated the Jacobin municipality in full force, and commissioned them to 
seek out and denounce " the guilty." He wrote to Paris that the inhabit- 
ants consisted of three classes: first, the guilty rich; second, the selfish 
rich ; third, the ignorant workmen, incapable of any wickedness. " The 
first," he said, "should be guillotined and their houses destroyed; the 
fortunes of the second should be confiscated ; the third should be removed, 
and their places supplied by a Republican colony." These directions 
were carried out with a degree of atrocity unsurpassed by any of the 
horrors of that horrible period. More than six thousand persons, of both 
sexes and all ages, perished by the hands of the executioners ; twelve 
thousand were driven into exile ; and the number of palaces and houses 
pulled down and demolished by order of the municipality may be estima- 
ted from the fact, that their destruction occupied six months of organized 
labor, and was effected at an expense to the government of more than 
seventeen millions of francs. 

Toulon was the next object of Republican revenge. That rising sea- 
port possessed a population of twenty-five thousand souls, and was warmly 
opposed to the Revolution from its commencement. In their present 
emergency, the inhabitants saw no alternative but to open their harbor to 
the English fleet which was cruising in the vicinity, and proclaim Louis 
XVII. king. This was done accordingly, and the Endish scniadron 


entered the harbor. Soon after, a Spanish fleet arrived bringing a consid- 
erable body of land-troops, and the allied forces, thirteen thousand strong, 
took possession of ?11 the forts in the city. A large portion of the French 
fleet lay at this time in the harbor, and their sailors, with the exception 
of the crews of seven ships of the line who proved refractory, joined the 
inhabitants in their defence. 

On the land side, Toulon is backed by a ridge of lofty hills, on which 
strong fortifications had long been erected and the artillery of which com- 
manded the greater part of the city and harbor. The mountain of Faron 
and the Hauteur de Grasse are the principal points of this rocky range, 
ana on their occupation depends, in a great measure, the maintenance of 
the place. They were now taken possession of by the allied troops. 
Every exertion was made by the allies and inhabitants to strengthen the 
defences of the town itself, and particularly to render impregnable the 
Fort Eguillette, placed at the extremity of the promontory which shuts in 
the lesser harbor, and was called by the -English, Little Gibraltar : yet 
the regular force was too small and composed of too many heterogeneous 
materials, to warrant any well-grounded hope of a permanent resistance. 

The Republican forces soon arrived, to the number of forty thousand 
men ; many of them veterans, all well disciplined, and provided with every, 
thing necessary for prosecuting the siege. Dugommier, by order of the 
Convention, took command of the Republican army, and Lord Mulgrave 
assumed the direction of the garrison of Toulon. 

The first attack of the Republicans was on the hill forts that com- 
manded the harbor, disguised by a false attack against Cape Brun. The 
breaching batteries were placed in charge of a young officer of artillery, 
then chief of battalion, who was destined to outstrip all his predecessors in 
European history NAPOLEON BONAPARTE. Under his superintendence, 
the works of the forts soon began to be seriously damaged ; and to inter- 
rupt his fire, a sally from the garrison was resolved on. This attempt 
was made on the 30th of November, by three thousand men, who moved 
against the heights of Arennes, whence this annoyance proceeded ; while 
another column of the allies, of nearly the same strength, attacked the 
batteries at the gorge of Ollioulles. Both attacks were at first successful. 
lOllioulles was carried and the guns on the point of being taken, when 
Dugommier rallied his troops, led them back, and repulsed the assailants. 
The sally on the side of Arennes was equally fortunate ; all the guns ol 
the battery were carried and spiked ; but the impetuosity of the allies 
having led them too far in pursuit of the enemy, they were in turn met by 
fresh troops headed by Napoleon, and driven back to the city with con- 
siderable loss. The whole force of the Republicans was next directed 
against the English redoubt, styled Little Gibraltar. After that fort had 
been battered at intervals for several days, the fire of the besiegers was 
maintained through the whole of the 16th of December, and at two o'clock 
on the morning of the 17th, Dugommier led his troops to the assault. They 
were received with a tremendous fire of grape and musketry, which soon 
filled the ditches with dead and wounded ; the column was driven back, 
and Dugommier despaired of success ; but fresh troops continually ad- 
vanced and at length overpowered the Spanish soldiers, to whom a part 
of the line was intrusted, and gained the flank of the British detachment, 
nearly three hundred of whom fell while defending their part of the 
intrenchments. The possession of this fort, by the enemy, rendered the 


farther maintenance of the exterior defences impracticable ; and in the 
night, the whole of the allied troops were withdrawn from the promontory 
to the city. The attack on this fort was planned and urged by Napoleon, 
who well knew that it commanded the inner harbor, and that its possession 
by the besiegers would render the situation of the fleet extremely perilous, 
and in all probability lead to the evacuation of the to T vn. 

While this important success was gained on the side of Fort Eguillette, 
he Republicans were not less fortunate on the other extremity of the line. 
A little before daybreak, and shortly after the firing had ceased on the 
promontory, a general attack was made on the whole range of posts which 
crowned the mountain of Faron. On the eastern side of the range, the 
Republicans were repulsed ; but on the north, where the mountain is 
nearly eighteen hundred feet in height, steep, rocky, and supposed to be 
inaccessible, they made good their ascent ; so that when the allies were 
congratulating themselves on the defeat of what they deemed the main 
attack, they beheld the heights above them crowded with glittering bat- 
talions, and the tricolor-flag waving from the loftiest summit of the 
mountain. This conquest, projected by Napoleon, was decisive of the 
fate of Toulon: for though the town was as yet uninjured, the harbor 
was no longer tenable. The evacuation was therefore resolved on. and 
information conveyed to the principal inhabitants, that the means of re- 
treat would be afforded them on board the British squadron ; and in the 
mean time, the ships were moved to the outer- roads, beyond the reach of 
the enemy's fire. 

The distress of the inhabitants, who were now forced to choose between 
exile and the guillotine, was extreme : nor can any words do justice to 
the scene that ensued, when the last columns of the allied troops com- 
menced their embarkation. Cries, screams and lamentations were heard 
in every quarter ; the sad remnant of those who had favored the Royal 
cause and had not yet secured the means of escape, came flying to the 
beach, and with tears and prayers invoked the aid of their British friends. 
Mothers, clasping their babes to their bosoms, helpless children and 
decrepit old men, might be seen stretching their hands toward the harbor, 
shuddering at every sound behind them, and even rushing into the waves 
to escape the less merciful death that awaited them from their country- 
men. Sir Sidney Smith, with a degree of humanity worthy of his high 
character, suspended his retreat until not one individual who claimed his 
assistance, remained on the strand : the total number borne away was 
fourteen thousand, eight hundred and seventy-seven. 

Before leaving the coast, the allies effected in part the destruction of 
the French fleet. Fifteen ships of the line, eight frigates and eleven cor- 
vettes were burned, three ships of the line and three frigates were brought 
away uninjured and taken into the English service, and twelve ships of 
the line and eleven frigates, owing to the lukewarmness or timidity of the 
Spanish officers, escaped destruction, and remained in the hands of the 

The storm which now burst on the heads of the remaining inhabitants 
of Toulon, was a legitimate counterpart of what was endured at Lyons. 
Several thousand citizens, men, women and children, perished within a 
few weeks by the sword or the guillotine, and twelve thousand laborers 
were hired from the surrounding departments to demolish the buildings 
of the city. 



WHILE the career of the French armies was thus marked by alterna- 
tions of victory and defeat, a different fortune awaited her naval arma- 
ments. Power at sea, unlike conquest on land, cannot spring from mere 
suffering, or from the energy of destitute warriors with arms in their 
hands ; nor are triumphs to be achieved on the ocean by merely forcing 
column after column of conscripts on board ships of war. 

At the commencement of the contest, the French navy consisted of 
seventy-five ships of the line and seventy frigates ; but the officers, drawn 
chiefly from the aristocratic classes, had, for the most part, emigrated on 
the breaking out of the Revolution, and those who supplied their places 
were deficient both in naval education and experience. On the other 
hand, England had one hundred and twenty-nine ships of the line and 
more than a hundred frigates ; ninety of each class were immediately put 
in commission, and seamen of the best description, to the number of eighty- 
five thousand, were drawn from the inexhaustible merchant-service. 
Unable to face the English in large squadrons, the French navy remained 
for a time in total inactivity ; but the French merchants, not having any 
pacific means of employing their capital, fitted out an immense number 
of privateers which proved extremely injurious to British commerce. 

Meanwhile, the ascendency of the navy of Great Britain produced its 
wonted effects on the colonial possessions of her enemies. Soon after the 
commencement of hostilities, Tobago was taken by a British fleet, and in 
the beginning of March, 1794, an expedition was sent against Martinique, 
which island surrendered on the 23rd of that month. Soon after, the prin- 
cipal forts in St. Domingo were wrested from the Republicans by the 
Engush forces, while the wretched planters, a prey to the commotion 
excited by Brissot and the friends of negro emancipation at the commence- 
ment of the Revolution, were totally ruined. St. Lucia and Guadaloupe 
were next subdued, and thus in little more than a month the French were 
despoiled of their West India possessions, with hardly any loss to the 

In the Mediterranean, also, the power of the British navy was speedily 
felt. Corsica was selected as the point of attack. Three thousand ma- 
rines and soldiers were landed, and they nearly effected the subjuga- 
tion of the island by capturing the fortress of Bastia, which capitulated 
at the end of May : and on the 1st of August, Calvi, the only remaining 
stronghold, surrendered to the British arms. The crown of Corsica was 
then offered by Paoli and the Royalist party to the King of England, who 
accepted it. 

But a more important achievement was at hand. The French govern- 
ment, by great exertions, had equipped for service twenty-six ships of the 
line at Brest, in order to secure the arrival of a large fleet laden with 
provisions from America, and on the 20th of May, the fleet put to sea. 
under Admiral Joyeuse. On the 28th, Lord Howe hove in sight with the 
Channel-fleet of England, consisting also of six-aixd-twenty ships of the 



line. The French were immediately formed in order of battle, and a 
paitial action ensued between their rear-guard and the British van, 
during which the Revolutionaire was so much damaged that she struck 
to the Audacious ; but as the victors did not take possession of her before 
nightfall, she was on the following morning carried off by the French and 
towed into Rochefort. The next day each party endeavored to gain the 
weather-gage, and, during the two following days, a thick fog concealed 
the rival fleets from each other's view. On the 1st of June, the sun 
broke forth with unusual splendor, and Lord Howe, having obtained the 
weather-gage, bore down obliquely on the enemy's line, broke it near the 
centre, and doubled, with a preponderating force, on one half of their 
squadron. The French fleet was arrayed in close order in a line extend- 
ing nearly east and west, and a heavy fire was commenced on the British 
ships as soon as they came within range. The battle then became general 
and was contested with great bravery on both sides ; but the superiority 
of the British seamen everywhere prevailed. One of the French ships 
was sunk, and ten surrendered ; but subsequently four of the prizes with 
the remainder of the fleet escaped. Six ships of the line remained in the 
hands of the British admiral, and were brought into Plymouth. The 
Republicans were in some degree consoled for this disaster, by the safe 
arrival of the fleet from America, consisting of one hundred and sixty 
vessels laden with provisions a supply of incalculable importance to a 
population, whom the Reign of Terror and civil disunion had brought to 
the verge of famine. 

Never was a victory more seasonable than Lord Howe's to the British 
government. The war, preceded as it was by violent party divisions in 
England, had been regarded with lukewarm feelings by a large portion 
of the people ; and until the Reign of Terror had shocked the respectable 
portion of the advocates of the Revolution, these short-sighted friends of 
freedom had feared the success of the British arms, lest it should 
extinguish the dawn of liberty in the world. But the victory of the 1st of 
June captivated the affections of the giddy multitude : the ancient, but 
recently half-expiring loyalty of the British people, wakened at the sound 
of their conquering cannon, and the hereditary rivalry of the two nations 
revived in all its force. From this period, may be dated the commence- 
ment of entire union among the inhabitants on the subject of the war. 

The secession of Prussia from the allied cause was a serious loss, and 
greatly embarrassed the opening movements of this year's campaign. 
Indeed, Mr. Pitt, by a renewed and energetic remonstrance, caused the 
King of Prussia a second time to promise his cooperation, but no effectual 
aid resulted from it. General Mack was intrusted by the Austrian and 
English governments with the preparation of a plan of the campaign, and 
he proposed one which, had it been vigorously carried into effect, might 
have produced brilliant results : this was, to open the French frontier by 
the capture of Landrecy and march with the army in Flanders, through 
Laon direct to Paris, while the Prussian forces, by a forward movement 
on the side of Namur, supported the operation. This plan, however, was 
not adopted; for the inhabitants of West Flanders protested against 
having their province made a theatre of war, the Prussians declined any 
active cooperation, and the remainder of the allied forces were unequal 
to such an expedition. The number and disposition of the troops on both 
sides, at the opening of the campaign, were as follows : 



Army of the North, . . 220,000 
Moselle and the Rhine, 280,000 

Alps, 60,000 

South, 00,000 

Eastern Pyrenees, . . . 80,000 
Western ditto . . . 80,000 

Flanders, 140,000 

Duke of York, . . . 40,000 
Austrians on the Rhine 60,000 
Prussians ditto 65,000 

Luxembourg, .... 20,000 
Emigrants, 12,000 

780,000 337,000 

Unaware, as yet, of the immense military resources of a despptic and 
i -evolutionary government, whose requisitions for soldiers, money and 
munitions of war were enforced by the terrors of the guillotine, and 
whose young men, deprived by the agitation of the period from all other 
occupation, voluntarily crowded into the ranks of the army, the allies 
resolved to capture Landrecy, and still entertained the hope of marching 
thence to Paris. Preparatory to this movement, the Emperor of Austria, 
on the 16th of April, reviewed a large division of the allied troops on the 
plains of Gateau, amounting to nearly one hundred and fifty thousand 
men. The troops were in the finest condition, th.e cavalry, in particular, 
were superb ; but, instead of profiting by their concentrated force to fall 
on the opposing armies, they were the next day divided into eight columns 
and spread over many leagues of the Flemish frontier, with the absurd 
intention of covering every point of entrance against the French ; and 
that, too, while their project of pushing forward to Paris was not yet 
abandoned. Landrecy was however besieged and captured, after ten days 
of open trenches, with its garrison of five thousand men. 

Notwithstanding the defect in the plans of the allies, their operations 
were attended with considerable success. The plan of the French con- 
sisted of a series of attacks on the posts and corps forming the line of the 
allies, followed by an advance of their two wings, the one toward Philip- 
ville, and the other toward Dunkirk. On the 26th of April, the move- 
ment took place along the whole line. The centre, which attacked the 
Duke of York near Cambray, experienced a bloody reverse. When the 
Republicans arrived at the redoubts of Troisville, they were intrepidly 
assailed by the English guards in front, supported by Prince Schwartzen- 
berg with a regiment of Austrian cuirassiers, while General Otto charged 
them in flank, at the head of the English cavalry, and completed their 
rout. The whole corps was driven back to Cambray, with a loss of thirty- 
five pieces of cannon and more than four thousand men. While this dis- 
aster was taking place on the left of the French army, the centre sustained 
a similar repulse from the Austrian covering force. But these advant- 
ages were counterbalanced by the defeat of General Clairfait on the right, 
who was attacked by fifty thousand French troops under Souham and Mo- 
reau, and forced to retreat precipitately with a loss of thirty pieces of 
cannon and twelve hundred prisoners. Prince Cobourg immediately de- 
tached the Duke of York to Tournay to support Clairfait, and himself 
remained in the neighborhood of Landrecy, to put that fortress in a state 
of defence. 

The Convention, greatly dissatisfied with the progress of their armies 
against the allied centre, ordered Jourdan to march with forty thousand 
men to the Ardenne forest, and unite himself with the army on the Sambre, 


Previously to his march, on the 10th of May, the French army crossed 
that river to attack the allies at Grandrengs, and a furious battle ensued, 
in which the Republicans were defeated, and forced to recross the river 
with a loss of ten pieces of .cannon and four thousand men. On the 20th 
of May they renewed the attack, but 'were so roughly handled that, had 
not Kleber arrived on the ground with fresh troops, the French army 
would have been totally destroyed : as it was, they lost four thousand men 
and twenty-five pieces of artillery. 

While blood was thus flowing freely on the banks of the Sambre, some 
movements of importance took place in West Flanders. The allies had 
there collected ninety thousand men, and the situation of the French left 
wing suggested the design of cutting it off from the main body, and forcing 
it back on the sea, where it must needs surrender : and had the allies acted 
more in concert, they might readily have accomplished this bold under- 
taking. But, obstinately pursuing the old system of dividing their forces, 
they moved in separate detachments and were easily defeated in detail by 
the French troops. On the 22nd of May, Pichegru assumed the command 
of the French, with the intention of laying siege to Tournay. A number 
of indecisive actions ensued, in which no object wa,s accomplished, though 
large numbers of troops were destroyed ; no less than twenty thousand 
men having fallen on the two sides. 

The result of these bloody actions, which demonstrated the strength of 
the Republicans, and showed the desperate strife that must follow any 
further attempts to subdue them, produced a change in the Austrian coun- 
sels, arid led to a determination on the part of the Emperor to withdraw 
from the contest as soon as decency would permit. 

Meanwhile, the Convention, unaware of this favorable change in their 
prospects, stimulated the army on the Sambre to fresh exertions. They 
again crossed that river under Kleber, on the 26th of May, but were easily 
repulsed. Nothing daunted, they renewed the attempt on the 29th, and 
this time succeeded in driving back the allies, after which they invested 
Charleroi. But the Emperor soon arrived with ten thousand additional 
troops, attacked the French lines on the 3rd of June, and again drove them 
across the Sambre. On the following day, Jourdan arrived with forty 
thousand men, and the French army, thus reenforced, returned to the siege 
of Charleroi, and on the 12th of June destroyed a strong redoubt which 
constituted its principal defence. The allies, alarmed at this result, made 
great efforts to raise the siege, and succeeded in breaking up the position 
of the Republicans, driving them over the river with a loss of three thou- 
sand men. On the 18th of June, the French army for the fifth time crossed 
the Sambre, and for the third time invested Charleroi. As the French 
before this place now numbered seventy thousand men, it became 
necessary for the allies to ree'nforce the covering army, which was done 
by withdrawing the Austrian troops from the Scheldt, leaving the Duke 
of York with the English and Hanoverians alone in that position : this 
separation of the Austrian and English forces contributed not a little to 
augment the misunderstanding which already existed between those two 
nations. The Austrian auxiliaries did not arrive in time to relieve Char- 
leroi, which capitulated on the 25th of June. The garrison had hardly 
left the gates, however, when the Austrians arrived ; and, as the allied 
forces were now sufficiently numerous to warrant the undertaking, they 
resolved to hazard a battle. This took place on the 26th, on the plains 


of Fleurus : it was commenced in the morning and continued with great 
vigor throughout the whole day. In the event, the allies retreated, leaving 
the French masters of the field ; but neither party had any cause for tri- 
umph. The loss on boih sides was nearly equal, being between four and 
five thousand men of each army : but this material advantage ensued to 
the French, that by the eastwardly movement of the Austrians and the 
pacific intentions of their Emperor, Flanders was in effect abandoned to 
the Republican armies, who not long after were enabled to concentrate 
themselves without opposition at Brussels. The sole care of the British 
was now to cover Antwerp and 'Holland ; but on the 15th of July, they 
were forced to evacuate the former, after which they withdrew their 
whole force to Breda for the defence of the latter. 

While the fortune of war was thus decisively inclining to the Republi- 
can side on the northern frontier, events of but trifling importance were 
taking place on the Rhine, though their tendency was favorable to the 
French. In Piedmont, they gained a more decided advantage, General 
Dumas having made himself master of Little St. Bernard and Mount Ce- 
nis, by which means the whole ridge of the Alps separating Piedmont from 
Savoy, fell into the possession of the Republican troops, and the keys of 
Italy were placed in the hands of the French government. The opera- 
tions on the frontiers of Nice, under the direction of General Bonaparte, 
were not less successful, and before the end of May, the Republicans 
were masters of all the passes through the maritime Alps ; while, from 
the summit of Mount Cenis they threatened a descent upon the valley of 
Susa, and from the Col di Tende they could advance without interruption 
to the siege of Coni. 

On the Spanish frontier, the war assumed a still more decisive aspect. 
The reduction of Toulon having enabled the central government to de- 
tach General Dugommier to reenforce the army on the Eastern Pyrenees, 
it was resolved to act offensively at both extremities of that range of moun- 
tains. During the winter, great exertions had been made to improve the 
discipline and condition of the French troops ; while on the other hand, 
the Spanish government, destitute of energy, and exhausted by the exer- 
tions they had already made, were unable to maintain the number and 
efficiency of their forces. Before the end of the year 1793, they had been 
reduced to the necessity of issuing more than sixty millions of dollars in 
paper money, secured on the income of the tobacco-tax ; but all their 
efforts to recruit their armies from the natives of the country proved inef- 
fectual, and they were obliged to take into their service some of the foreign- 
ers employed in the siege of Toulon. Between two such contending 
powers as the French and Spanish, victorv could not long remain doubtful. 
The Republicans prevailed in almost every encounter, defeating and dis- 
piriting the Spanish troops, making them prisoners, taking their cannon, 
and capturing not only the fortresses of which they had possessed them- 
selves on the French territory in the preceding campaign, but also the 
Spanish fortresses of Figueras and Rosas, two of the most important posts 
on the whole frontier, hitherto regarded as nearly impregnable, and of the 
greatest consequence to the French as they laid open the richest plains 
of Spain to their invasion. Nor were the Spaniards more successful on 
the Western Pyrenees, where the French made themselves masters of St. 
Marcial, Bidossoa, Fontarabia, and St. Sebastian ; and thus, as early as 
August found themselves firmly posted in the Spanish territory, with am- 



pie magazines and stores both of provisions and ammunition. These terri- 
ble disasters compelled the Spaniards to sue for peace, which the French 
government were not unwilling to grant, as by so doing they could avail 
themselves of the experienced soldiers who had gained these conquests, 
to reenforce their armies for the expedition they meditated on the south 
of the Alps. 

Meantime, the French armies in the north, after a delay of nearly two 
months, resumed the offensive. Jourdan and Kleber defeated the retreat, 
ing Austrians in a pitched battle at Ruremonde, captured the castle of 
Rheinfels, and the noble fortress of Maestricht with its three hundred and 
fifty pieces of cannon so that, on the left of the Rhine, the Imperialists 
retained nothing of all their possessions but Luxembourg and Mayence. 
On the other side, Moreau pressed the Duke of York and compelled him 
to retire to the right bank of the Meuse, leaving Bergen-op-Zoom, Breda 
and Bois-le-Duc to their own resources. Pichegru then pushed on with 
seventy thousand troops to Bois-le-Duc, which he soon forced to capitulate. 
He followed up his success, crossed the Meuse, drove the Duke of York 
with considerable loss across the Waal, and invested Grave and Venloo, 
which latter place surrendered to the French musketry alone. 

These successes of the French in the north, great as they were, formed 
but the prelude to a winter campaign of still more decisive results. On 
the 27th of October, Pichegru laid siege to Nimeguen, where the Duke 
of York was intrenched with thirty thousand men. The Duke made a 
vigorous sally when the Republicans had taken up their position, and 
repulsed them for the moment ; but the French soon strengthened their 
approaches, and the Duke, finding it impossible to protect the place, 
evacuated it in the night, leaving but three thousand Dutch troops for its 
defence ; and the next day this fine fortress, which commands the passage 
of the Waal, fell into the hands of the French. 

The French army now stood in great need of repose ; but the Convention, 
inflamed with the spirit of conquest, kept them in the field, and insisted 
on renewed exertions. Accordingly, on the 28th of December, they 
commenced their winter campaign by an attack, in two columns, on the 
Dutch advanced posts. The Dutch troops, after a slight resistance, fled 
in confusion, leaving sixty pieces of cannon and sixteen hundred prisoners 
behind them. On the following' day, Grave capitulated, and Breda, one 
of the last of the Dutch barrier towns, was invested. 

The States-General of Holland, being now deserted by the allies and 
wholly unable to resist the overwhelming forces of the French, made 
proposals of peace to the Convention, offering to recognize the Republic 
and pay two hundred millions of francs. The Convention, however, had 
resolved to establish their revolutionary government in Holland, and 
would listen to no proposals, but ordered Pichegru to subdue that devoted 
country. The unprecedented cold of the winter aided in giving an 
unlooked-for success to this ambitious determination, for the rivers were 
so frozen as to offer a free passage to the troops. The situation of the 
Prince of Orange was now embarrassing in the last degree. He presented 
himself before the States-General, and declaring that he had done his 
uttermost to save the country, avowed his determination to retire from his 
command : at the same time, he recommended them to make a separate 
peace with the enemy. He then embarked for England, and the States 
immediately ordered their troops to cease all resistance, while they 


dispatched ambassadors to Pichegru's head-quarters with new proposals 
for peace. 

The French Generals, desirous to avoid the appearance of subjugating 
the Dutch, were pausing in their career, expecting that revolutionary 
movements would manifest themselves in the principal towns, to which, 
indeed, they incited the inhabitants by encouraging proclamations. The 
event justified their expectations. On the 18th of January, 1795, the 
popular party in Amsterdam surrounded the burgomasters in the town- 
hall, at the moment when the advanced guard of the French army reached 
the gate of that city. The magistrates, in alarm, resigned their authority ; 
Democratic leaders were installed in their places ; the tricolor flag was 
hoisted on the H6tel-de-Ville, and the Republican troops entered the town 
amid the shouts of the multitude. The conquest of this rich and powerful 
city, which had defied the whole power of Louis XIV, and imposed such 
severe conditions on France at the treaties of Utrecht and Aix-la-Chapelle, 
was of great importance- to the French government. Utrecht, Leyden, 
Haarlem, and all the other towns of Holland soon underwent a similar 
revolution and received the French troops as deliverers. But an event, 
still more marvellous, succeeded these rapid and surprising conquests : 
namely, the capture of the Dutch fleet of fifty vessels, by a squadron of 
French cavalry ! The ships were at the time frozen up in the Texel ; 
and the Republican forces, after having crossed the lake of Biesbos on 
the ice and made themselves masters of the arsenal of Dordrecht, contain- 
ing six hundred cannons, ten thousand muskets and immense stores of am- 
munition, packed through Rotterdam and took possession of the Hague. A 
body of cavalry now crossed the Zuyder Zee, and summoned the fleet: the 
commanders, confounded at the hardihood of the enterprise, immediately 
surrendered to this novel kind of assailants. The province of Zealand 
capitulated about the same time, Friesland and Groningen were succes- 
sively evacuated, the British troops embarked for England, and the whole 
of the United Provinces submitted to the Republican arms. 



THE kingdom of Poland formerly extended from the Borysthenes to the 
Danube, and from the Euxine to the Baltic. She was the Sarmatia of 
the ancients, and embraced, within her borders, the original seat of those 
nations which subverted the Roman Empire. Prussia, Moravia, Bohemia, 
Hungary, the Ukraine, Courland and Livonia are all fragments of her 
once mighty dominion. The Goths, who appeared as suppliants on the 
Danube, and were ferried across by Roman hands never to be driven 
back ; the Huns, who under Attila spread desolation through the Empire; 
the Sclavonians, who overspread the greater part of Europe all emerged 
from her vast and uncultivated plains. But her subsequent progress has 
ill corresponded to such a commencement : her greatest triumphs have 
ever been succeeded by her greatest reverses ; the establishment of her 


internal freedom has led to nothing but external disaster, and the deliverer 
of Europe in one age, was in the next swept from the book of nations. 

These extraordinary facts have arisen from one cause : that Poland 
retained, until a modern period, the independence and equality of her 
ancient savage life. She was neither subjugated by more polished States, 
nor did she vanquish more civilized ones ; the simplicity and bravery of 
the pastoral character remained unchanged in her native plains for fifteen 
undred years. And as Poland then was, she ever continued a race of 
ealous freemen and iron-bound slaves ; a wild democracy ruling a 
captive people. After representative assemblies had been established for 
centuries in Germany, France and England, the Poles adhered to their 
ancient custom of summoning every freeman to discuss, sword in hand, 
the affairs of the Republic. An hundred thousand horsemen met always 
for this purpose in the field of Volo, near Warsaw; and this terrible as- 
sembly, where all the proprietors of the soil were convoked, constituted 
at once the military strength of the nation in war, and its legislature in 
peace. In the estimation of this haughty race, the will of a freeman was 
what no human power should attempt to control ; and, therefore, it was 
the fundamental principle of all their deliberations, that no resolution 
could be adopted but by a literally unanimous vote. This relic of savage 
equality was productive of incalculable evils to the Republic ; yet, so 
blind are men to the cause of their own ruin, it was ever adhered to by 
the Poles with enthusiastic obstinacy, and is even spoken of with ad- 
miration by their national historians. Unanimity, however, is a virtual 
impossibility in human legislation ; and as it could not occur in Poland 
more than elsewhere, and as it was indispensable, nevertheless, that the 
affairs of their government should goon, the Poles adopted the only other 
method of expediting their deliberations : they massacred the minority. 
This appeared to them an evil incomparably less than carrying measures 
by a majority : " Because," they reasoned, "the acts of violence are few 
in number, and affect only the individual sufferers: but if once the pre- 
cedent is established of compelling the minority to be governed by the 
majority, there is an end* to the liberty of the people." 

The clergy, that important body who have done so much for the freedom 
of Europe, never formed a separate order, or possessed any spiritual 
influence in Poland : the order was confined to the nobles, who had no 
sympathy with the serfs, and disdained to admit them to any of their 
sacred offices. The inequality of fortune, too, and the rise of urban 
industry, the source of so much benefit to all the other European powers, 
was in Poland productive of positive evil. Fearful of being compelled 
to divide their power with the inferior classes when they chanced to be 
elevated by riches and intelligence, the nobles affixed the stigma of 
dishonor to every lucrative or useful profession. Their maxim was, that 
nobility is not lost by indigence, or even by. domestic servitude, but is 
destroyed by commerce and industry : their constant policy was, also, to 
debar the serfs from the use of arms ; for, though they continued to de- 
spise, they had also learned to fear them. In short, the freemen, or nobility 
of Poland, strenuously proscribing -every kind of power and every attempt at 
superiority on the part of the lower orders, as a usurpation, and, on their 
own part, every kind of industry as a degradation, remained, to the close 
of their career, at open variance with all the principles on which the 
prosperity of society depends. 


The crown of Poland, though held long by the great families of the 
Jagellons and the Piasts, had always been elective. The king disposed 
of all offices in the Republic, and a principal part of his duty consisted 
in gcring from province to province to administer justice in person. The 
nobility carried his sentences into execution with their own armed force ; 
and as there was never any considerable standing army in the service of 
the Republic, the military force of the throne was altogether nugatory. 

Nothing can so strongly demonstrate the wonderful power of democ- 
racy and its desolating effects when unrestrained, as the history of John 
Sobieski. The force, which this illustrious champion of Christendom 
could bring into the field to defend his country from Mohammedan in- 
vasion, seldom amounted to fifteen thousand men ; and when, previous 
to the battle of Kotzim, he found himself, by an extraordinary effort, at 
the head of forty thousand, of whom hardly one-half were disciplined, he 
was inspired with such confidence, that he attacked without hesitation 
eighty thousand Turkish veterans strongly intrenched, and gained over 
them the greatest victory that had been achieved by the Christian arms 
since the battle of Ascalon. The troops which he led to the rescue of 
Vienna were but eighteen thousand native Poles, and the combined Chris- 
tian armies amounted to only seventy thousand combatants ; yet with this 
force he routed three hundred thousand Turks, and broke the Mussulman 
power so effectually, that the crescent of Mohammed steadily receded 
before the other European powers, and from that period, historians date 
the decline of the Ottoman Empire. Yet after these glorious triumphs, 
the ancient dissensions of the Republic revived and paralyzed its strength, 
the defence of the frontiers was intrusted to a few undisciplined horsemen, 
and the Polish nation, to their eternal disgrace, allowed this heroic king to 
be besieged by innumerable hordes of barbarians for months, before 
they would advance to his relief. Sobieski, worn out at last with inef- 
fectual endeavors to create a regular government, or establish a permanent 
force for the protection of Poland, foretold the fate of the Republic in his 
death-bed address to the Senate, wherein he assured them that their 
dangers as a nation arose not from external enemies, but from the 
vices of their own unenlightened government ; and he predicted that 
within forty years the Republic would cease to be. His prophecy was 
not literally fulfilled, for the glories of his reign prolonged the existence 
of Poland nearly a century ; but, though he erred as to the time, he was 
right as to the fact of its speedy dissolution. 

Never did a people exhibit a more extraordinary spectacle than the 
Poles after this period. Two factions divided the kingdom, and kept it 
in a perpetual war : each faction had its army, and each army was a 
foreign army. The inferior noblesse introduced the Saxons, and the 
superior called the Swedes to their aid ; so that, from the time of Sobieski's 
death, strangers never ceased to reign in Poland ; its national forces were 
continually diminishing, and, at length, totally disappeared. When, 
therefore, the adjoining states of Russia and Austria effected the first 
partition of Poland, in 1772, they were not required to conquer a kingdom, 
but only to take shares of a state which had fallen to pieces. The 
election of Stanislaus Poniatowski to the remnant of the throne of Poland, 
in 1764 ; took place literally under the buckler ; but it was the buckler of 
the Muscovite, the Cossack and the Tartar, who overshadowed the plain 
of Volo with their arms. 



The next struggle of the Poles, like all that preceded it, originated in 
their own dissensions. The partisans of the ancient anarchy revolted 
against the new and more stable Constitution of Poniatowski : they took 
up arms at Targowice, and invoked the aid of the Empress of Russia to 
restore the disorder from which she had already gained so much. A 
second dismemberment took place on the 14th of October, 1793, and, in 
the disordered state of the country, it was effected without opposition. 
Prussia and Russia took this partition upon themselves, and their troops 
were at first quietly cantoned in the provinces which they had severally 

There is a certain degree of calamity which subdues man's courage ; 
but there is also another degree which, by reducing men to desperation, 
leads to the greatest enterprises : and to this latter state the Poles were 
now reduced. Abandoned by all the world, distracted with internal 
divisions, destitute of fortresses and resources, the patriots of that unhappy 
country resolved to make a bold effort to recover their freedom. The 
first movement was made by a band of these brave men, at Warsaw, and 
they made choice of Kosciusko to direct their efforts. 

This illustrious hero, who had received the rudiments of military 
education in France, and had afterward served with distinction in the 
American war for independence, was every way qualified to head the 
last struggle for freedom of the oldest republic in the world. Having, by 
aid of the regiments which had revolted, and the junction of some bodies 
of half-armed peasants, collected a force of fiv* thousand men, Kosciusko 
left Cracow and advanced into the open country. He encountered a 
detachment of three thousand Russians at Ralsowice, on the 8th of April, 
1794, and routed them with great slaughter. This action, inconsidera- 
ble in itself, was important in its consequences. The Polish peasants 
exchanged their scythes for the arms found on the field of battle, and the 
insurrection, encouraged by this gleam of success, soon extended into the 
adjoining provinces. Stanislaus in vain disavowed the acts of his subjects ; 
the passion for independence spread with the rapidity of lightning, and 
soon every patriot in Poland was in arms. 

Intelligence of the victory at Ralsowice reached Warsaw on the 12th 
of April ; a violent agitation ensued, and on the morning of the 17th, the 
brigade . of Polish guards, under direction of their officers, attacked the 
governor's house and the arsenal, and was speedily joined by the populace. 
The Russian and Prussian troops in the neighborhood of the capital were 
about seven thousand men, who, after a prolonged contest in the streets 
for six-and-thirty hours, were driven across the Vistula, with the loss of 
three thousand men in killed and prisoners. Immediately, the flag of 
independence was hoisted on the towers of Warsaw. 

Kosciusko now did everything that courage and energy could suggest 
to put on foot a formidable force to protect the revolt : a provisional gov- 
ernment was established, and in a short time, forty thousand men were 
raised an effort highly honorable to the patriotism of the Poles, although 
the army was inconsiderable, compared with the forces that Russia and 
Prussia could bring into the field. 

No sooner was the King of Prussia informed of the Revolution at 
Warsaw, than he moved forward at the head of thirty thousand men to 
besiege that city, while the Russian General Suwarrow, with forty 
thousand veterans, prepared to overrun the southeastern parts of the 


kingdom. Aware of the necessity of striking a blow before the enemy's 
forces were concentrated, Kosciusko, with twelve thousand men, marched 
to attack the Russian General Denisoff ; but on approaching his corps, he 
discovered that the Russians were already united with the king of 
Prussia. He retreated immediately, but was pursued by the allies, over- 
taken near Sckoczyre, and after a gallant defence, defeated ; upon which 
Cracow fell into the hands of the conquerors. This check was the more 
unfortunate, as about the same time General Zayonschuk was defeated at 
Chelne, and compelled to cross the Vistula, leaving the whole right bank 
of that river without defence. 

The combined Russian and Prussian armies now advanced against 
Warsaw, where Kosciusko occupied an intrenched camp with twenty- 
five thousand men. During the whole of July and August they pressed 
the siege of this capital, at the end of which time, the king of Prussia, 
despairing of success, raised the siege and withdrew his army, leaving a 
portion of his sick and stores in the hands of the patriots. 

Encouraged by this event, the Poles were enabled to recruit their 
forces to nearly eighty thousand men under arms ; but they were in- 
judiciously scattered over too extensive a line of country, and exposed 
to being beaten in detail. Indeed, the enthusiasm occasioned by the 
raising of the siege of Warsaw had not subsided before Sizakowski, with 
ten thousand men, was defeated by the Russians under Suwarrow, on the 
17th of September. This celebrated general, to whom the principal 
conduct of the war was now committed, followed up his success with the 
utmost spirit. The retreating army was again assailed on the 19th, and, 
after a brave resistance, driven into the woods below Janow and Biala, 
with a loss of four thousand men and twenty-eight pieces of cannon. On 
receiving intelligence of this disaster, Kosciusko resolved to concentrate 
his forces and fall upon General Fersen before he could join Suwarrow, 
who was now advancing against Warsaw. With this view, he ordered 
General Poninsky to come up with his forces, and himself moved on to 
the attack. But when he arrived at the Russian position, he found that 
Poninsky had delayed his march, and was not there to join in the combat. 
Nevertheless, fearing to retreat, he was forced to make his dispositions for 
the battle, which took place on the 4th of October. The Poles contested 
the ground most gallantly ; but they were inferior to the enemy, both in 
numbers and discipline, and were at length defeated with a loss of nearly 
half their number, and Kosciusko was himself made prisoner. The 
retreating army, reduced to seven thousand five hundred men, fell back 
in confusion toward Warsaw. 

After the fall of Kosciusko, nothing but a series of disasters awaited 
the Poles. The Austrians overran the yet unconquered provinces; and 
Suwarrow, with his entire army, advanced upon Praga, where twenty-six 
thousand Poles, with one hundred pieces of cannon, defended the bridge of 
the Vistula and the approach to Warsaw. On the 4th of November the 
Russians, in seven columns, assailed the ramparts, rapidly filled up the 
ditches with their fascines, broke down the defences, and poured their 
battalions into the intrenched camp. The defenders in vain did their ut- 
most to resist the torrent. The wooden houses of Praga took fire, and 
amid the shouts of the victors and the cries of the inhabitants, the Poles 
were borne back to the edge of the Vistula. Ten thousand soldiers fell 
on tha spot, nine thousand were made prisoners, and twelve thousand citi- 


zens, without distinction of sex or age, were put to the sword : a dreadful 
carnage, which has left a lasting stain on the name of Suwarrow, and 
which Russia expiated in the conflagration of Moscow. 

The tragedy now closed. Warsaw capitulated; the detached parties 
of the patriots melted away, and Poland was no more. 

Sucli was the termination of the oldest Republic in existence, and such 
the first instance of the total destruction of a member of the Euiopean 
family by its ambitious kindred. The event excited a profound sensation 
in Europe. The folly of its preceding career, the irretrievable defects 
of the Polish constitution, were forgotten ; and Poland was remembered 
only as the bulwark of Christendom against the Ottomans. The bloody 
march of the French Revolution was overlooked, and the Christian world 
was penetrated with a grief akin to that felt by all civilized nations at the 
fall of Jerusalem. 

The poet has celebrated these events in the immortal lines : 

" Oh ! bloodiest picture in the book of Time : 
Sarmatia fell, unwept, without a crime ; 
Found not a generous friend, a pitying foe, 
Strength in her arms, nor mercy in her wo ! 
Dropped from her nerveless grasp the shattered spear, 
Closed her bright eye, and curbed her high career: 
Hope for a season bade the world farewell, 
And Freedom shrieked as Kosciusko fell !" 

But the truth of history must dispel this illusion, and unfold, in the fall 
of Poland, the natural consequences of its national delinquencies. Sar- 
matia did not fall unwept, nor without a crime : she fell the victim of her 
own dissensions ; of the chimera of equality insanely pursued, and the 
rigor of aristocracy unceasingly maintained : of extravagant jealousy of 
every superior, and merciless oppression of every inferior rank. The 
eldest born of the European family was the first to perish, because she 
had thwarted all the ends of the social union ; because she had united the 
turbulence of democratic, to the exclusion of aristocratic societies ; because 
she had the vacillation of a Republic without its energy, and the oppres- 
sion of a monarchy without its stability. Such a system neither could 
be, nor ought to be, maintained. 



ON the day after the fall of Robespierre, there were but two parties in 
Paris ; that of the Committee, who strove to maintain their Jacobin ascend- 
ency, and that of the Liberators, who labored to overthrow it. The lat- 
ter party was known by the name of Thermidorians, from the month in 
which its members had triumphed over the dictator ; it consisted of the 
whole centre of the National Convention, together with the remnant of the 
Royalists and the party of Danton. The Jacobins were still powerful, 
however, and the Thermidorians were cautious about measuring their 


strength with them ; but the friends of clemency gained daily accessions 
to their force. On the 30th of July, 1794, the contest was brought to an 
issue. Barere, on the part of the Jacobins, rose in his place and proposed 
that the Revolutionary Tribunal should be continued, and that Fouquier 
Tinville should still act as public accuser. At the pronouncing of that 
name a murmur of indignation was heard in the assembly, and Frcron 
cried out, " I propose that we purge the earth of that monster, and that 
he be sent to lick up in hell the blood that he has shed." This proposal 
being carried by acclamation, Barere left the tribune ; and Tinville was 
brought to trial with fourteen of his most guilty associates, who were 
all condemned and executed. 

The next measures of the Convention were of a humane tendency. 
They repealed the law against suspected persons; and although the Revo- 
lutionary Tribunal continued its sittings, its forms were remodelled, and 
its vengeance was directed chiefly against the authors of former outrages. 
The captives were gradually released from confinement, and instead of 
the fatal tumbrils that formerly stood at the gates of the prisons, crowds 
of joyous citizens there welcomed with transport their liberated parents or 
children. At the end of two months, out of ten thousand suspected per- 
sons, not one remained in the prisons of Paris. 

In order to strengthen themselves more effectually for the future, the 
Thermidorians enlisted in their support such youths of the metropolis as 
be-longed to the most respectable families who had lost some relative at 
the guillotine, and were therefore irreconcilably hostile to the Jacobins. 
To distinguish them from the populace, they wore a particular dress called 
the Costume a la Victime ; they bore in their arms short, loaded clubs ; and 
were known by the name of La Jeunesse Dorte. The contests between 
them and the Jacobins at length assumed an important character. Paris 
became one vast field of battle, in which each strove for the mastery. 
The strife was long and obstinate ; but finally the Convention passed a 
decree dissolving the Jacobin clubs all over Paris, and the Jeunesse Doree 
carried it into execution with force of arms. 

The Convention gradually repealed the laws passed during the Revo- 
lutionary government: that, namely, regulating the price of provisions, 
the prohibitions against the Christian worship, the statutes confiscating the 
Girondists' property and passed an act restoring to the original owners such 
property, confiscated by the government, as had not been disposed of to 
third parties. They next proceeded to the decided step of impeaching 
Varennes, Collot d' Herbois, Barere, Vadier, and other prominent leaders 
of the Jacobins, who had been most active in the cruelties of the Reign of 
y'orror. This bold measure "produced a great agitation, and a revolt was 
organized in the fauxbourgs to prevent their trial from proceeding. The 
insurgents forced their way into the assembly, and were about to recom- 
mence their scenes of violence, so common in the preceding year, when 
a band of the Jeunesse Doree made their appearance and quickly dispersed 
the mob. The trial proceeded and the parties were all found guilty ; but 
the Thermidorians, from considerations of policy, made a humane use of 
their victory. Varennes, Collot d' Herbois, and Barere were condemned 
to the limited punishment of transportation ; and seventeen members of 
the Mountain were put under arrest and conducted to the chateau of Ham. 

By the fall of Robespierre and the execution of his associates, the Ja- 
cobins had lost the municipality ; the closing of their clubs had deprived 


them of their centre of operations ; and the late exile of so many of their 
members hacl taken from them their ablest leaders. Still, there remained 
to them the forces of the fauxbourgs, the inhabitants of which had retained 
their arms ; and their failure in attempting to rescue Varennes and the 
rest had not discouraged them. A new insurrection was agreed on for the 
20th of May, 1795, on which day no less than thirty thousand men, armed 
with pikes, proceeded to the hall of the Convention. When the members 
were informed of their approach, they passed resolutions for summoning 
the National Guard, and making other provision for their defence ; but the 
danger that was at their very door, could not be resisted by legislative 
enactments. The multitude crowded into the hall, tore the president from 
his chair, and as Ferraud, with generous devotion, threw himself before 
the mob, to intercept the blows destined for the president, he was mortally 
wounded, dragged out, and beheaded in the lobby. The rabble then took 
possession of the seats vacated by the terrified members of the Conven- 
tion, and proceeded at once to organize a new government. Everything 
seemed to indicate a complete revolution. 

But, though the Convention was thus forcibly dissolved, its committees 
still existed, and their firmness saved France. They immediately con- 
vened, passed resolutions befitting the emergency, and, when night 
approached, proceeded with the National Guard and the Jeunesse Doree 
to the hall where the insurgents were legislating. A violent contest 
ensued, but it resulted in the defeat of the Jacobins, and, at midnight, the 
members of the Convention resumed their places. All that had been 
done by the rebel authority was annulled, and twenty-eight members who 
had supported their proceedings were put under arrest. On the following 
day, the Jacobins renewed their attempts, and again surrounded the 
Convention, bringing with them a train of artillery, which was deliberately 
placed in position for an attack. But the National Guard and Jeunesse 
Doree stood this time on the alert, and the insurgents were summarily 

Instructed by such disasters and escapes, the Convention now resolved 
on decisive measures : and six of the most turbulent leaders of the 
Mountain were delivered over to the military commission, and executed. 
The murderer of the deputy Ferraud was next discovered, tried, and 
condemned. On the occasion of his execution, the Convention, anticipating 
another revolt, ordered the disarming of the fauxbourgs, which was 
effectually accomplished by the firmness of the National Guard, who, 
thirty thousand strong, and provided with artillery and mortars, brought 
the refractory inhabitants to submission. Soon after, the National Guard 
was reorganized by the exclusion from its ranks of all indigent citizens, 
and from that day the multitude ceased to rule in Paris. * 

The Convention now proceeded to form a new Constitution, in which 
some of the fundamental principles of the Revolution were unequivocally 
repudiated ; and, so contagious was this spirit of reaction, Royalist 
doctrines began rapidly to gain currency. The National Guard and 
Jeunesse Doree of several sections openly espoused the Royalist side, 
while in the South of France bands were organized, who traversed the 
country, and executed dreadful reprisals on the Revolutionary party. 
At Lyons, Aix, Tarascon and Marseilles, they massacred the Jacobin 
prisoners without trial or discrimination, and the horrors of the 2nd of 
September, with the exception of the reverse of parties, were reenacted 


in most of the prisons of that part of the country. The people, exasperated 
with their remembrances of the Reign of Terror, were insatiable in their 
vengeance. They invoked the names of parents, brothers, or sisters, 
when retaliating on their oppressors ; and, while themselves committing 
murders, cried to their victims, with every stroke : " Die, assassins ! " 

Meanwhile, the framing of the new Constitution was completed. By 
this instrument, the third one that had been formed in France during a 
few years, the legislative power was divided into two Councils ; that of 
the Five Hundred, and that of the Ancients. The Council of Five Hundred 
was intrusted with the sole power of originating laws, and the Council of 
the Ancients, with the power of passing or rejecting them ; and to insure 
the prudent discharge of this duty, no person could be a member of the 
fatter Council till he had reached the age of forty. The executive power 
was lodged in the hands of five Directors, to be nominated by the Council 
of Five Hundred, and approved by the Ancients : they were liable to 
impeachment for misconduct, were each to be president for three months 
by rotation, and every year one new Director was to be chosen, and one 
to retire to make room for him. This Directory had the disposal of the 
army and finances, the appointment of public functionaries, and the 
control of public negotiations. They were lodged, during the period of 
their official duty, in the Palace of the Luxembourg, and attended by a 
guard of honor. The elective franchise was greatly restricted by the 
new charter, being confined entirely to proprietors ; all popular societies 
were interdicted, and the press was declared absolutely free. 

It is important to recollect that this Constitution, so cautiously framed to 
exclude tfte direct influence of the people, and curb the excesses of popular 
licentiousness, was the voluntary work of the very Convention which 
had come into power under the democratic Constitution of 1793, and 
immediately after the 10th of August; which had voted the death of the 
King, the imprisonment of the Girondists, and the execution of Danton ; 
which had supported the bloody excesses of the Revolutionary Tribunal, 
and survived the horrors of the reign of Robespierre. Let it no longer be 
said > therefore, that the evils of popular rule are imaginary dangers, 
contradicted by the experience of mankind. The checks thus imposed on 
the power of the people, were the work of their own delegates, chosen by 
universal suffrage, during a season of unexampled public excitement, 
whose proceedings had been marked by a more violent love of freedom 
than any that ever before existed from the beginning of the world. 
Nothing can speak so strongly for the necessity of controlling the people, 
as the acts of the representatives whom they had themselves chosen to 
confirm their power. 

The discussion of this Constitution in the assemblies of the people to 
whom it was referred, produced the most violent agitation throughout 
France. Paris, as usual, took the lead. Its forty-eight Sections were 
constantly in -session, and the public effervescence resembled that of 1789. 
This was brought to its height by an additional clause in the Constitution, 
wherein the Convention decreed that two-thirds of their own number should 
be'incorporated into the new legislature, and that, therefore, the electors 
should fill up only the remainder. 

This rapid stride toward despotism was loudly resisted all over France. 
The National Guard of Paris declared their opposition, and the Jeunesse 
Doree pledged themselves to resist it. But the' Convention did not waver. 


They had first lost the support of the Jacobins by their proscription ; and 
now, that of the Royalists by their ambition : one power remained, and 
they appealed to it THE ARMY. They submitted the Constitution to the 
soldiers, and it was by them unanimously approved. A body of five thou- 
sand regular troops assembled in the neighborhood of Paris, and their 
adhesion to the Convention was eagerly proclaimed to the citizens. The 
Sections of Paris, however, openly resolved to revolt. A meeting of the 
electors took place on the 3rd of October, at the Theatre Francais, under 
the protection of the National Guard, where they unanimously decided on 

But while these things were in progress, the Convention was not idle. 
They passed a decree, dissolving the electoral bodies in Paris, and em- 
bodying into a regiment fifteen hundred Jacobins, many of whom were 
liberated from the prisons for that especial purpose. General Menou was 
appointed to the command of this armed force, and he advanced with the 
troops of the line to disperse the Sections. But Menou had not the energy 
requisite for such service, and, instead of attacking, he entered into nego- 
tiations with the insurgents, and retired in the evening without having 
effected anything. His failure gave the Sections the advantage of a 
victory, and the National Guard mustered in greater strength than ever, 
and resolved to attack the Convention on the following day. The Con- 
vention, learning what Menou had done, immediately dismissed him, and 
gave the command to General Barras, who solicited the appointment, as 
second in command, of a young officer of artillery who had distinguished 
himself at Toulon and in the maritime Alps Napoleon Bonaparte. This 
young officer was at once introduced to the committee. His manner was 
timid and embarrassed ; the career of public life was yet new to him ; but 
his clear and distinct opinions inspired the committee with confidence, and 
they invested him with the desired command. 

Under his direction, fifty pieces of artillery were immediately so disposed 
as to command all the avenues to the Convention, and, early on the fol- 
lowing morning, the neighborhood of the Tuileries resembled an intrenched 
camp. In this position, Napoleon awaited the attack of the insurgents, 
who amounted to no less than thirty thousand men, while the army of the 
Convention did not exceed six thousand. But the insurgents had no 
artillery, and though they were individually brave men, they could nol 
long sustain a close contest with disciplined troops. The battle was soon 
terminated by the total overthrow of the National Guard, and the Con- 
vention, from that day, held the undisputed control of the Republic. 

While these important changes were taking place within the French 
dominions, other events of moment occurred on her frontier and throughout 

The great success which everywhere attended the French arms at the 
conclusion of the campaign of 1794, led, early in the following year, to a 
dissolution of the confederacy between the allied sovereigns. Prussia, 
Spain, Bavaria, the Elector of Mayence, and other powers, successively 
detached themselves from the league, and some of them entered into 
separate treaties of peace with France ; while Holland was forced to 
conclude with France an offensive and defensive treaty, and bound to aid 
in prosecuting the war against the enemies of the Republic. Austria and 
England remained firm in- their determination to continue the war, and 
Mr. Pitt and Thugut, the respective ministers of the two nations, formed 


a new treaty of alliance, offensive and defensive, by which Austria agreed 
to maintain two hundred thousand men in the field, and England contracted 
to furnish a subsidy of six million pounds sterling, for their support. 
England made exertions for the prosecution of the war more con- 
siderable than she had yet put forth, and seemed sensible that renewed 
efforts were indispensable now that the strife threatened to approach her 
own shores. Her naval force was augmented to one hundred thousand 
seamen, one hundred and eight ships of the line were put in commission, 
and the land forces raised to one hundred and fifty thousand men. The 
expenditure of the year, exclusive of the interest of the national debt, 
amounted to twenty-seven and a half millions sterling, of which eighteen 
millions were raised by loan, and three and a half millions by exchequer 
bills. To such an immense extent, thus early in the contest, was the 
ruinous system of providing for the expense of the year by borrowing, 
adopted by the British government. On the 18th of February, Russia 
became a party to the new treaty of alliance, though this measure was 
not at first productive of important results. The Empress Catherine was 
as yet too much occupied in the affairs of Poland, and too little interested 
in the continental war, to take an active part in the present campaign ; 
she merely sent twelve ships of the line, and eight frigates, to reenforce 
Admiral Duncan in blockading the fleet recently acquired by France 
from the Dutch Republic. 

During the winter of 1794-5, the French government made great 
efforts to put their navy on a respectable footing ; and, early in March, 
_ji expedition was fitted out at Toulon, consisting of thirteen ships of the 
line and carrying eighteen thousand land troops, intended to recover pos- 
session of Corsica. Lord Hotham, who commanded the English block- 
ading fleet in the Mediterranean, was at Leghorn when this French fleet 
sailed, but was ignorant of their movements ; and the French succeeded 
in capturing the Berwick seventy-four gun ship in the Gulf of St. Florent, 
the whole Republican fleet having come upon her unawares. The British 
admiral immediately put to sea with thirteen line-of-battle ships, and fell 
in with the French squadron on the 15th of March. He captured two 
ships of the line, the Ca Ira and the Censeur, and the remainder of the 
enemy's fleet fell back to the Isles de Hyeire**. and disembarked their 
troops. The object of the expedition was thus entirely frustrated. 

The campaign in the maritime Alps was opened on the 12th of May. 
by a successful French attack on the Col Dumont, then occupied by two 
thousand Piedmontese troops. Soon after, Kellerman having weakened his 
right by detaching some battalions to Toulon, the Imperialists assumed the 
offensive, and by a series of well-concerted movements forced the French 
to evacuate all their positions in that quarter. But toward the end of 
August, the activity of the Republicans had greatly reenforeed their armies 
on the Alpine frontier ; and General Scherer taking command, prepared 
to give battle to the allies, forty thousand strong, near the little seaport 
of Loano. The battle commenced on the 23rd of November; and at the 
conclusion of the day, the centre of the allies was forced and their left 
wing partly turned. The combat was renewed on the following morning 
and ended in the total defeat of the allies, with a loss of two thousand 
killed, five hundred taken prisoners, and a large quantity of baggage, 
magazines and artillery. This victory, by giving the French the entire- 
command of the maritime Alps, closed the campaign in. that quarter. 


The position of the armies on the northern and eastern frontier remained 
the same as at the close of the preceding campaign, but their condition 
was much changed for the worse. The troops were ill paid, ill fed, ana 
in want of all military supplies requisite fora vigorous prosecution of the 
war; and their discipline was greatly relaxed. The condition of the 
Austrians, on the Bother hand, was much improved ; but they remained 
in total inactivity on the right bank of the Rhine, and, failing to succor 
the garrison of Luxembourg, that fortress, with ten thousand men and a 
large train of artillery, fell into the hands of the Republicans on the 24th 
of June. The Prince of Conde, on the Upper Rhine, was at the same 
time engaged in a secret negotiation with Pichegru, who was growing 
disaffected toward the Convention : the precise nature of these negotiations 
has never transpired ; but after six months passed in this way, Pichegru 
discontinued it. and prepared to obey the orders of the Convention, by 
commencing the campaign. 

Jourdan, having at length obtained the necessary supplies, prepared to 
cross the Rhine in the beginning of September. On the 6th of that month, 
he effected the passage at Eichelcamp, Neuwied and Dusseldorf, and 
compelled the garrison of the latter town to capitulate : he then advanced 
toward the Lahn, and established himself on the banks of that river. 
Pichegru, meantime, crossed the Upper Rhine at Manheim, one of the 
principal bulwarks of Germany, and by a spirited demonstration forced 
that city to surrender. This was a great disaster to the Austrians, as it 
opened the way for Jourdan to throw his whole army against Mayence on 
the right bank of the Rhine. But the Austrian commander, Clairfait, 
proved himself equal to the emergency. By a. skilful and rapid march 
he turned the left of the French line and forced Jourdan to a disastrous 
retreat, which threw his whole army into confusion. Then, suddenly 
abandoning the pursuit, Clairfait turned upon Mayence and arrived there 
by forced marches before the French besieging army were aware of his 
approach. The lines of circumvallation around this city, which the Re- 
publicans had been a whole year in constructing, and the remains of 
which still excite the admiration of travellers, were of immense extent 
and garrisoned by thirty thousand men. The Imperialists advanced to 
the assault in three columns, and the Republicans were so taken by sur- 
prise, that they abandoned the rirst line almost without firing a shot. The 
panic occasioned to the remainder of the French army by this event was 
such, that the Austrians carried the entire works by storm, and the Repub- 
licans fled in every direction. This brilliant achievement was followed 
by a series of successes on the part of the Austrians, under Clairfait and 
Wurmser, which ended in their driving the French from all their positions 
and recapturing Manheim. A suspension of arms during the winter was 
then agreed on, and both parties retired into winter-quarters. 

This year was distinguished by the unfortunate descent of the English 
and the Royalist emigrants on the coast of France. The obstacles to the 
landing of the troops had been effectually removed by the naval engage- 
ment off L'Orient between a British fleet of fourteen ships of the line and 
eight frigates, under Lord Bridport, and a French fleet of twelve ships of 
the line and thirteen frigates, in which the latter were defeated with a 
loss of three ships of the line. The invading army, amounting to about 
ten thousand men, landed in Quiberon Bay on the 27th of June and made 
themselves masters of the fort of Penthievre. Their arrival, together 


with their success in capturing this fort, was the signal for all the Roy- 
alists to rise in the west, and the Chouan bands crowded in great numbers 
to the camp of the invaders. The Republican forces, however, were on 
the alert, and Hoche, with a considerable body of disciplined troops, 
advanced to Quiberon. He attacked the Royalist forces on the 7th of 
July, drove them from their intrenchments, and hemmed them in on the 
narrow peninsula where they had first landed. The misery of the men, 
cooped up in a corner of land without tents or lodgings, soon became 
extieme ; and a body of Chouans from the interior, in connection witji 
Count Vauban and three thousand men under his command, planned an 
attack against the rear of the Republicans, in the hope of relieving the 
blockade : while the besieged army sallied from their camp to take the 
enemy in front. The latter attempt was made ; but the troops in the rear 
did not come up, and the emigrants therefore drew on themselves the 
whole Republican strength. The Republicans prevailed in the battle, 
drove the invaders under the guns of the fort, -and would have entered it 
with the fugitives, had they not been arrested by the fire of some English 
cruisers in the harbor. They followed up their success by a night attack 
on the fort, which was devised and executed with great skill and bravery, 
and was completely successful : the fort, and a large number of pris- 
oners fell into their hands, a small part only of the whole invading 
force having been able to escape to the British ships. 

Tallien, whom the Convention had sent down to Quiberon Bay as 
commissioner of the government, made an atrocious use of this victory, 
and stained, with ineffaceable disgrace, the glory he had won in his tri- 
umph over Robespierre. In defiance of the verbal capitulation entered 
into between the French general and the emigrant prisoners when the 
latter surrendered, he caused them to be closely confined, and by his 
personal influence with the Convention procured an order for their sum- 
mary execution. Seven hundred and eleven of them, among whom were 
the members of the noblest families in France, were accordingly put to 
death in cold blood. 

The French marine was so broken by various disasters in the Medi- 
terranean and at L'Orient, that nothing more of consequence took place 
at sea for the remainder of the year: though, by means of predatory 
expeditions against the commerce of Great Britain, they inflicted many 
losses on the English merchants. The English availed themselves of 
their maritime supremacy to make themselves masters of the Cape of 
Good Hope, which surrendered to Sir James Craig, on the 16th of Sep- 



EARLY in March, 1796, Napoleon Bonaparte laid before the Conven- 
tion a plan for a campaign in Italy, which was so remarkable for its 
originality that it attracted the especial notice of Carnot, then minister at 
war. About the same time the youthful officer was married to Jose- 
phine, widow of Alexander Beauharnois, a general of the French army, 
who had been guillotined during the Reign of Terror. The genius 
developed in Napoleon's plan of the campaign, together with the obliga- 
tion conferred by him on the Convention in defending them against the 
last insurrection of the National Guard and the Jeunesse Doree, decided 
the vote of that body in his favor, and he was invested with the command 
of the army in Italy. 

He found the troops in a miserable condition. The number of men 
was about forty-two thousand, and the artillery amounted to sixty pieces. 
The cavalry were almost without horses, the soldiers of all ranks were 
in great want of tents and magazines, and they had for a long time sub- 
sisted on half rations, collected by themselves in marauding expeditions. 
But, considered with reference to their military qualities, this army was 
the most efficient in the service of the Republic. Its soldiers had seen a 
good share of service, were inured to hardships and privations, and among 
its officers were to be found the names of Massena, Augereau, Serrurier 
and Berthier. 

On the other hand, the allies had more than fifty thousand men in good 
condition, well supplied, and having two hundred pieces of artillery, while 
the Sardinian army, of twenty-four thousand men, guarded the avenues of 
Dauphiny and Savoy. Their forces were thus distributed : Beaulieu, a 
veteran of seventy-five, with thirty thousand Austrians and one hundred 
and fifty pieces of cannon, was on the extreme right of the French, and 
in communication with the English fleet ; and Colli, with twenty thousand 
men and sixty guns, was in a line with him to the north, covering Ceva 
and Corri. Generally speaking, the French occupied the crest of the 
mountains, while the allies were stationed in the valleys leading to the 
plains of Italy. 

Napoleon arrived at Nice on the 27th of March, and having ascer- 
tained the relative position of the troops, resolved to penetrate into Pied- 
mont by the Col de Cadibone, the lowest part of the ridge that divides 
France from Italy ; and, by pressing his columns on the line of communi- 
cation, separate .he Austrian and Piedmontese armies from each other. 
At the same time, Beaulieu was assuming the offensive and directing his 
columns toward his own left at Genoa. Leaving his righkwing at Dego, 
he pushed his centre, under D'Argenteau, to the ridge of Montenotte, and 
himself advanced with the left along the sea-coast. The two armies 
came into contact at Montenotte, and the battle that ensued became cele- 
brated, as being the first one in which Napoleon was ever engaged as 
general -in-chief. The Imperialists, ten thousand strong, first encountered 
a body of only twelve hundred French, under Colonel Rampon, whom 


they speedily drove back to the old redoubt of Monte Legino; but the 
French colonel, perceiving the vital importance of this fort, which if lost 
would expose the whole army to being divided, repulsed the impetuous 
assaults of the Austrians, and made good his stand until nightfall. Du- 
ring the night, Napoleon, with the divisions of Massena and Serrurie? 
moved up to the heights in the rear of Montenotte, and in the morning the 
Austrians found themselves surrounded on all sides. They resisted for 
a time the French attacks, but were at length completely routed, with a 
'loss of five pieces of cannon, two thousand prisoners, and more than a 
thousand killed and wounded. This victory opened the plains of Pied- 
mont to the French, and completely separated the Austrian and Sar- 
dinian armies. 

Napoleon, occupying now a central position, having received reenforce- 
ments of troops, and improved, by supplies and victory, the condition and 
spirits of his men, resolved to attack both allied armies at the same time. 
A series of actions immediately followed, each small in itself, but import- 
ant as a part of the general result, which by regular progression increased 
the conquests of Napoleon, and drove back his antagonists from their 
positions, until the French army, descending from the sterile summits of 
the Alps, found themselves, though still among the lesser mountains, in 
communication with the rich and fertile plains of Italy. The soldiers, 
animated with success, speedily recovered from their fatigues, the strag- 
glers rejoined their colors, and bands of conscripts from the depots pressed 
forward to share the glories and the spoils of the Italian army ; so that, 
despite their losses, the Republicans were as strong as at the commence- 
ment of the campaign : while the allies, besides having been driven from 
their Alpine barriers, were weakened by the loss of more than twelve 
thousand men and forty pieces of cannon. 

The court of Turin was in the utmost consternation at the advance of 
the French. The ministers of Austria and England urged the king to 
imitate the example of his ancestors, and abandon his capital, leaving the 
fortresses of Tortona, Alexandria and Valentia in the hands of the Aus- 
trians, to give Beaulieu a firm footing on the Po. But the arguments of 
the Cardinal Costa overruled this advice, and persuaded the king to unite 
himself with France. Napoleon, on receiving the advances of the Sar- 
dinian government to this effect, granted an armistice, which was fol- 
lowed by a treaty of peace, wherein the king of Sardinia ceded to the 
Republic, Savoy, Nice, and the whole possessions of Piedmont west of the 
highest ridge of the Alps, including the fortresses of Coni, Ceva and Alex- 
andria, and granted a free passage through his dominions to the French 

Having secured his rear by this advantageous treaty, Napoleon lost no 
time in pursuing the discomfited remains of Beaulieu's army, which had 
retired behind the Po, with the intention of covering the Milanese terri- 
tory. He had inserted and given publicity to a clause in the treaty with 
the king of Sardinia, granting him permission to cross the Po at Valentia, 
and thereby deceived the Austrians as to the place where he really in- 
tended to effect the passage. The attention of Beaulieu having been by 
this artifice drawn to Valentia, the French forces were rapidly moved to 
Placentia, and crossed the river in boats on the 7th of May. Napoleon 
arrived two days afterward with the bulk of his forces, and established a 
bridge. Thus, one great obstacle to the conquest of Lombardy was 



already removed. Beaulieu was at Pavia, busily engaged in erecting 
fortifications, when he heard of the passage at Placentia. He imme- 
diately moved forward with his advanced guard to Tombio, but the French 
drove him back with loss. 

The French troops having now entered the states of Parma, the Grand- 
duke of those domains, possessing no military resources, was forced to 
make peace on such terms as the victor chose to grant. The spoliation 
consisted in part, of a contribution in money, sixteen hundred horses, and 
a large supply of corn and provisions; but on this occasion Napoleon 
commenced another kind of military plunder, unparalleled in modern 
warfare, that of exacting from the vanquished their most precious works 
of art. Parma was compelled to surrender twenty of its principal paint- 
ings, among which was the celebrated St. Jerome, by Corregio. 

On the 10th of May, Napoleon marched toward Milan, but the Adda 
lay in his way, and it was necessary to cross that stream at the bridge of 
Lodi, which was held by twelve thousand Austrian infantry and four 
thousand cavalry. Napoleon arrived at Lodi at the head of the grena- 
diers of D'Allemagne, on which the Austrians withdrew from the town, 
crossed the river, and posted their infantry with twenty pieces of cannon, 
at the farther extremity of the bridge, to defend the passage. To attempt 
to cross this narrow defile which was thus swept with a constant storm of 
grape shot, seemed little short of madness ; yet, such was the enthusiasm 
of the French grenadiers, led on by their dauntless general, they rushed 
forward with an impetuosity that nothing could resist, carried the Aus- 
trian guns, and established themselves on the other side of the river. 

After this disaster, Beaulieu retired behind the Mincio, leaving Milan 
to its fate, where Napoleon made a triumphant entry on the 15th of May. 
The citizens received him as a deliverer; from every part of Italy the 
young and ardent flocked to Milan to welcome him. A succession of 
balls and festivities gave token of the universal joy ; but the illusion was 
of short duration. Italy was destined soon to experience the bitter fate 
of every people who look to foreign aid for their deliverance. In the 
midst of the general joy, a requisition of twenty millions of francs struck 
the Milanese with astonishment, and wounded them in their tenderest 
part their domestic and economical arrangements. Great requisitions 
of horses and provisions were at the same, time made in all the Milanese 
territory. Nor did the Duke of Modena escape more easily: he was 
compelled to purchase peace at the expense of ten millions of francs and 
twenty paintings from his gallery. Thus, liberated Italy was treated with 
greater severity than usually falls to the lot of a conquered state. The 
rage for republicanism and the work of revolution went on, nevertheless : 
within ten days from the occupation of Milan, national guards, in the 
Republican interest, were organized all over Lombardy, revolutionary 
authorities were everywhere established, and the country rendered sub- 
servient to the military power of France. These changes and exactions 
were not, however, enforced with the unanimous approval of the people 
of Lombardy. The thinking part of the community abhorred them from 
the first, and all soon began to perceive, that in welcoming the French, 
they had bowed to a heavier yoke than the one they " formerly bore. 
Roused to indignation by such treatment, an insurrection was organized 
over the whole 6f that beautiful district, and it first broke out at Pavia, 
wnere the people rose against the garrison, forced it to capitulate, and 


shut their gates against the French troops. Napoleon hurried to the scene 
of tumult with a sufficient force, made his way into the town by assault, 
ordered the magistrates and leaders of the town to be shot, delivered the 
city up to plunder, and cut down great numbers of the people in the 
streets. This terrible example crushed the insurrection, indeed; but as a 
merciless and unwarrantable massacre, it has left a blot on the character 
of Napoleon. 

The French army now continued its march, and on the 28th of May, 
entered the city of Brescia, situated on the neutral territory of Venice. 
Its arrival threw the Venetian Senate into the greatest perplexity, as it 
compelled them to take part with Austria or France, and they knew 
not which to choose. It was evident, from the experience of Lombardy, 
that to side with France was to embrace their own ruin : and to defy tha 4 
power with its armies at her gates, was equally fatal. They therefore 
adopted the most timid course, which in presence of danger is usually th? 
most perilous : they made no warlike preparations, and sent commis- 
sioners to the French general to deprecate his hostility. The consequence 
was what might have been anticipated, between such parties in such a 
relation; the conquering general levied contributions on the Venetian 
territories, and took immediate possession of two important fortresses 
Porto Legano and Verona. 

Having thus gained the command of the Adige, Napoleon made prepa- 
rations for investing Mantua, the most important fortress in Italy. Serru- 
rier commenced the blockade on the 14th of June, with ten thousand 
men; and as the siege would necessarily occupy a considerable time, 
Bonaparte had leisure to deliberate on his ulterior measures. He learned 
that Wurmser had been detached from the army of the Upper Rhine with 
thirty thousand men, to reenforce the Austrian army in Italy, and would 
arrive at Verona about the middle of July. Believing that, in the interim, 
he would have time to subdue the central states of Italy and thus secure 
his rear from molestation, Napoleon set out with the division of Augereau 
to cross the Appenines. His expedition was little else than a march of 
triumph. He first entered Modena, where he was received with every 
demonstration of joy; proceeded thence to Bologna, where the same 
scenes were enacted, and took possession, on his' road thither, of the Fort 
of Urbino with its sixty pieces of cannon. He next marched to Ferrara, 
and took its arsenal with one hundred and fourteen pieces of artillery; 
and in the mean time, General Vaubois crossed the Appenines with another 
division, and directed his steps toward Rome. At the intelligence of his 
approach, the council of the Vatican was thrown into the utmost alarm. 
Azara, minister of Spain, was dispatched immediately with offers of 
submission, and arrived at Bologna to lay the tiara at the feet of the 
Republican general. The terms of the armistice were soon agreed on: 
it was stipulated that Bologna and Ferrara should remain in possession 
of the French ; that the Pope should pay twenty millions of francs, furnish 
large contributions of stores and provisions, and give up a hundred of the 
finest works of art to the French commissioners. After concluding this 
important treat}'', Napoleon dispatched Murat to Leghorn, where, in open 
violation of all the usages of war, he found and confiscated the effects 
of English merchants to the value of twelve millions of francs. The 
French commander-in-chief then returned to hasten forward the siege 
of Mantua. 


Meanwhile. Wurmser was approaching at the head of sixty thousand 
effective troops, which was twice the number that Napoleon, after deduct- 
ing the fifteen thousand before Mantua, and ten thousand occupied in 
maintaining his communications, could bring into the field to oppose him. 
The French troops were thus divided : Sauret, with four thousand five 
hundred was posted at Salo: Massena, with fifteen thousand, occupied 
Corona and the plateau of Rivoli ; Despinois held five thousand in the 
environs of Verona ; and Augereau commanded a reserve of eight thousand 
at Legnago. Napoleon, with two thousand cavalry, took post at Castel- 
nuovo, to be equally near any of the points requiring his assistance. 

On the 29th of July, the Imperialists attacked the French lines at all 
points, and everywhere with success. Massena was driven from his 
intrenchments at Corona, retired to Rivoli, and was glad to escape to 
Castelnuovo: at the same time, the Austrians appeared in force before 
Verona and on the other side of the Lake of Guarda Lusignan, carried 
the town of Sabo, and thus cut off the principal line of retreat toward 

In this extremity, Napoleon, for the first time during the campaign, 
called a council of war. He heard the opinions of his officers, all oi 
whom except, Augereau recommended a retreat behind the Po, and in the 
course of the night formed his own resolution. He ordered the siege of 
Mantua to be raised, united the troops investing that place to all the other 
divisions excepting Massena's, and advanced by forced marches to Lonato, 
where he encountered and defeated Quasdonovich ; who, astonished at 
finding himself opposed by an army where he expected to see only a 
rear-guard, fell back toward the mountains, to await intelligence of the 
main body under Wurmser. 

That brave commander, having dislodged Massena from his position, 
advanced to Mantua, where he made a triumphal entry on the 1st of 
August. But on the very night of his arrival, he learned that Quasdon- 
ovich had been checked and Brescia taken. He immediately advanced 
his columns across the Mincio and moved upon Castiglione, while Quas- 
donovich resumed the offensive and retook Salo. Napoleon was now, 
with an inferior force, Between the two armies: but his energies rose 
with the emergency. On the 3rd of August, he advanced with twenty- 
five thousand men upon Lonato, carried it by a rapid assault, and while 
the Imperialists were extending themselves toward Salo to open a com- 
munication with Quasdonovich, made a desperate charge on their centre 
and divided their army : one of the Austrian divisions effected its retreat 
to the Mincio, but the other, that was moving toward Salo, was totally 
routed. Meantime, Augereau had been contending with superior numbers 
at Castiglione, and with difficulty maintained his ground ; but now Napo- 
leon arrived with reinforcements and the Austrians gave way, retreating 
toward Mantua, until Wurmser, with fresh troops, came in person to theii 

As the Austrian veteran was still bent on bringing the contest to a 
close in a pitched battle, both parties were occupied on the ensuing day 
in collecting and organizing their forces. Napoleon had arrived at Lonato 
for that purpose, and after dispatching thence some large bodies of troops, 
he remained for the moment with only twelve hundred men at head- 
quarters. While thus situated, he was suddenly summoned to surrender 
by the commander of four thousard Austrians ; who, in the intricate coun- 


termarchings of the day, had unexpectedly come up. Napoleon caused 
his numerous staff to mount on horseback, and having ordered the officer 
who bore the flag of truce to be brought before him, directed the bandage 
to be taken from his eyes, and told the astonished Austrian that he was in 
the midst of the French army, and in presence of its general-in-chief; 
and that, unless the Austrian troops laid down their arms, they should be 
all put to the sword. The officer, deceived by the splendid conVge, 
returned to his division and recommended them to surrender, which was 
accordingly done on the spot. When they entered the town, they had 
the mortification to discover that they jiad not only capitulated to one-third 
their own number, but had also missed an opportunity of making prisoner 
the commander-in-chief of the French army. 

On the following day, August 5th, the battle took place at Medola and 
ended in the defeat of the Austrians, who fell back behind the Mincio; 
the French were disabled, by excessive fatigue, from pursuing them. 
Wurmser then leisurely retreated to his former station at Roveredo and in 
the fastnesses of the Tyrol. He had, in his brief expedition, victualled 
Mantua and supplied it with a fresh garrison ; but he had lost nearly 
twenty thousand men and sixty pieces of cannon, and the spirit of his 
soldiers was completely broken by fatigue and disaster. Napoleon, on 
the retreat of the Austrians, resumed the blockade of Mantua. 

After a repose of three weeks, during which the armies on both sides 
received considerable reinforcements, the war began anew. The Aulic 
Council of Vienna, untaught by former disasters of the imprudence of 
forming plans at a distance for the regulation of their armies, again 
framed and transmitted to Wurmser orders for expelling the French 
from the line of the Adige, directing him, as before, to divide his forces 
into two columns, and thus repeating the error that proved so fatal to his 
previous expedition. Napoleon, who occupied a central position, equi- 
distant from both divisions, moved first to Serravale on the Adige against 
Davidowich, whom he forced back into Roveredo in confusion. Davido- 
wich rallied his broken troops in the defile of Galliano, but he was again 
routed with great loss, driven toward Trent, and on the following day, 
September 5th, Napoleon entered that city while the remains of Davido- 
wich's corps retreated behind the Lavis. 

Wurmser, on receiving intelligence of this defeat, resolved to advance 
<>y the Val Sugana, sieze Verona, and raise the siege of Mantua. But 
Napoleon, who, by treachery at the Austrian head-quarters, was during 
this whole campaign kept informed of his adversary's plans, and was 
therefore enabled always to take him at advantage, anticipated the move- 
ment; and, by a forced march, placed himself in a position to surprise 
the Austrian rear-guard, which he utterly routed. At the same time, 
\he divisions of Massena and Augereau surprised the main body under 
Wurmser, near Bassano, where the Austrians, discouraged by repeated 
defeats, made but a feeble resistance. They were broken at all points, 
and fled into Bassano with a loss of four thousand prisoneis, thirty pieces 
of cannon, and almost all their baggage and ammunition. Wurmser now 
pushed on with sixteen thousand men toward Mantua, which he reached 
without further loss: but a number of smaller actions ensued with the 
broken and scattered detachments of the Austrians, in all of which the 
French prevailed. . The Austrian army had taken the field, but one 
month before, with fifty thousand men; they were now reduced to thirty 


thousand, of whom sixteen thousand, with Wurmser, were shut up in 
Mantua, where they were of no real service, as the garrison was suffi- 
cient without them and was beginning to suffer for want of provisions. 
The French army had, however, lost during the same time, fifteen thou- 
sand men in killed, wounded and prisoners. 

Still, the Austrian government did not relax their efforts, and by the 
first of November had raised their Italian armies to fifty thousand men. 
Their first movement was against Massena at Bassano, where, under 
General Alvinzi, they were partially defeated ; but the French under 
Vaubois, having on the same day attacked the Austrian position on the 
Lavis, were totally defeated by Davidowich and driven to Galliano with a 
loss of four thousand men. Napoleon hastened in person to repair this 
disaster, and attacked the Austrians on the heights of Caldiero ; but he 
was bravely repulsed by the Imperialists, and retreated in the night with 
a loss of more than three thousand men, yielding the victory in a pitched 
battle to the Austrians for the first time in the campaign. 

Having thus found that the Austrian position at Caldiero was impreg- 
nable in front, Napoleon resolved to assail it in flank, and accordingly 
made a rapid night march by the village of Arcola with his whole force. 
A desperate action ensued at this place which continued through two 
whole days, and in the end both parties withdrew from the field, leaving 
the victory undecided. But on the third day, November 17th, the battle 
was renewed with a more decisive result, and the Austrians were forced 
to give way. They retreated, however, in good order, and sustained no 
further loss than what occurred in the action. 

The result of the battle of Arcola was by no means so decisive as the 
previous victories of the French : the loss on both sides had been nearly 
equal, no important position was gained, nor were the spirits of the 
defeated soldiers broken. Nearly two months of inaction followed, 
which the commanders of both armies occupied in reorganizing their 
forces : and in the mean time, Mantua was reduced to the last extremity 
from famine ; it therefore became indispensable for the Austrians to 
adopt some energetic measure for its relief. Accordingly,^! the 12th 
of January, 1797, Alvinzi advanced at the head of thirty-five thousand 
men, attacked the French posts on the Montebaldo,' and forced them back 
to the plateau of Rivoli : here, they were reenforced by the whole French 
centre under Napoleon, and again attacked on the 14th. The action was 
contested with great bravery on both sides, but at length the Austrians 
prevailed on all points, and were preparing for a final charge that must 
have ended in the total overthrow of Jhe Republican troops, when Napo- 
leon, with great presence of mind, sent a flag of truce to Alvinzi. proposing 
a suspension of arms for half an hour, as he had some proposal to make 
in consequence of the arrival of a courier from Paris. Alvinzi was simple 
enough to fall into the snare, granted the suspension, and Napoleon pained 
time to rally his troops. This changed the fate of the day. The French 
recovered from their confusion, repelled every subsequent attack, and 
finally repulsed the Austrians with immense loss in prisoners and artil- 
lery. This victory was followed up by an attack on Provera's division 
near fort St. George, on the 16th of January, where the Austrians were 
again defeated and lost six thousand prisoners. 

Mantua, being now deprived of its last hope of relief, was forced to 
capitulate. Wurmser. with all his staff, and five hundred men, was 


allowed to return to Austria ; the remainder of the garrison, eighteen 
thousand strong, surrendered their arms, with fifty standards and more 
than five hundred pieces of artillery. 

Napoleon now directed his arms against Rome ; for, during the strife 
on the Adige, the pope had not only refused to ratify the treaty of Bo 
logna, but had openly engaged in hostile measures against the French. 
The soldiers who had vanquished the strength of Austria were not long 
in crushing the feeble forces of the Church. The pope again submitted, 
and peace was concluded at Tolentino on the 19th of February, on terms 
far more humiliating to the Holy See thaji the conditions of the previous 

Such was the Italian campaign of 1796. On no former occasion in the 
history of the world, had so great success been achieved in so short a 
time, or so mighty a power been vanquished by forces so inconsiderable. 
An army not exceeding fifty thousand men at any one time, though con- 
stant reinforcements kept it at nearly that strength, had not only broken 
through the barriers of the Alps, subdued Piedmont and Lombardy and 
humbled the whole of the Italian States, but defeated and almost destroyed 
four powerful armies of Austrians, and concluded by a capture of the 
most important fortress in Italy. 

The civil war in La Vendee and Brittany, which had so long disturbed 
the domestic government of France, was brought to a conclusion in the 
early part of the same year. General Hoche, at the head of one hundred 
thousand men, enveloped the disaffected provinces, and by a course 
marked both with vigor and humanity, succeeded in suppressing all the 
revolts, taking possession of the towns, and finally reconciling the people 
to the Republican sway. Charette and Stofflet, the brave and indomi- 
table leaders of the Chouan bands, were by great exertions made prisoners, 
and both perished under the sentence of military commissions an igno- 
minious and cruel fate for men of such distinguished qualities. 

The condition of England, at the close of the year 1795 and in the 
beginning of 1796, was, in respect of public opinion, nearly as much 
divided as France had been during the Revolution. The continued dis- 
asters of the war, the pressure of new and increasing taxation, the appa- 
rent hopelessness of prolonging the struggle with a military power which 
all the armies of Europe had been unable to subdue, not only gave new 
strength and vigor to the Whig party who had opposed hostilities from the 
first, but induced many original opponents of the revolutionary mania to 
hesitate about a further continuance of the contest. So violent, indeed, 
had party spirit become, and so completely had it usurped the place of 
patriotism and reason, that many of the popular leaders really began to 
wish for the triumph of their enemies : for they saw no hope of carrying 
through a Parliamentary reform, nor of acquiring any addition u> the 
democratic power, unless, by the success of the French, the present 
ministry were forced to retire from the government. 

These ill-humors at length broke out into open violence. On one 
occasion, as the king was going to Parliament, the royal carriage was 
surrounded by an immense crowd of turbulent people, who loudly de- 
manded peace and the dismissal of Mr. Pitt. One of the windows was 
broken by a stone, or a bullet from an air-gun ; and on his majesty's 
return, he was again assailed and narrowly escaped the fury of the popu- 
lace. These outrages, however, tended only to strengthen the govern- 


ment, by clearly convincing all reasonable men, into what excesses the 
populace would speedily run, if they were not restrained by a firm hand, 
and also how narrow a line divided England from the horrors of the 
French Revolution. 

The question on the continuance of the war was warmly debated in 
Parliament, but was at length carried, and the measure provided for by 
liberal supplies. Another measure excited a violent controversy, namely, 
a bill to provide for the additional security of the king's person and the 
prevention of seditious meetings throughout the country. This bill passed 
the House of Commons by the decisive vote of two hundred and fourteen 
to forty-two, and the House of Lords by sixty-six to seven. The opposi- 
tion were so exasperated by the success of the ministers on this occasion^ 
that Mr. Fox and a large part of the minority withdrew, for a considerable 
time, from the house. 

Previous to the opening of the campaign, the British government, in 
order to bring the French Directory to the test, authorized their minister, 
Mr. Wickham, to make some advances on the subject of a general peace ; 
but the Directory replied, that they would treat only on condition of 
retaining the Low Countries; a condition to which neither England nor 
Austria could submit. As all hope of peace was thus at an end, the 
allied powers made great preparations for prosecuting the war: and the 
Archduke Charles was appointed to the command of the armies on the 

The forces of the contending parties here were not greatly dissimilai 
in infantry, but in cavalry, the Imperialists were greatly superior to their 
antagonists. On the Upper Rhine, Moreau commanded seventy-one 
thousand infantry and six thousand five hundred cavalry; while Wurm- 
ser, wlio was opposed to him, had sixty-two thousand foot and twenty-two 
thousand horse: but, before the campaign was far advanced, thirty thou- 
sand men, as has already been related, were directed under Wurrnser to 
reen force the army of Italy. On the Lower Rhine, the Archduke com- 
manded seventy-one thousand infantry and twenty-one thousand cavalry; 
while the French, under Jourdan, amounted to sixty-three thousand 
infantry and eleven thousand cavalry. Thus, the Austrians were, pre- 
vious to the detachment of Wurmser for Italy, superior in numbers to the 
French ; but the latter had the important advantage of holding much the 
greater number of fortresses on the line. 

The campaign was opened by Kleber. He crossed the river at Dussel- 
dorf, and, being joined by Ney and Soult, defeated the advanced posts of 
the Austrians, who retreated with the loss of fifteen hundred prisoners 
and twelve pieces of cannon. The Archduke moved immediately to the 
assistance of the discomfited corps, with forty-five thousand infantry and 
eighteen thousand cavalry : on which Jourdan, in turn, marched to sup- 
port Kleber, and the two main armies were nearly brought into contact, 
when the French, finding themselves outnumbered and outmanoeuvred, 
wore forced to retreat. Moreau, who commanded the army on the Upper 
Rhine, including the divisions of Desaix and St. Cyr, taking advantage 
of the absence of the Archduke, formed a project for crossing the Rhine 
at Strasburg, and seizing the fortress of Kehl, which was negligently 
guarded on the opposite shore. The expedition was planned with great 
dispatch and secrecy, and on the night of the 24th of June, the French 
army moved silently across the river, advanced to the intrenchmrints of) 


Kehl, and carried them at the point of the bayonet. From the magnitude 
of this undertaking and the skill with which it was carried out, it ranks 
as one of the most distinguished exploits of that remarkable period. 

Having thus gained a permanent footing on the right bank of the Rhine. 
Moreau, toward the end of June, advanced to the foot of the mountains 
of the Black Forest at the head of seventy-one thousand men. This cnle-' 
brated chain of mountains is a mass of rocky hills separating the valley 
of the Rhine from that of the Neckar. The French general immediately 
attacked a body of ten thousand Swabian troops at Renchen, occupying 
the entrance of the defiles leading through the mountains: the Swabians 
gave way with considerable loss and retreated before Moreau, who now 
had broken through the centre of the Austrian line, and threatened their 
whole communications. On receiving this alarming intelligence, the 
Archduke hastened by forced marches to arrest the progress of the in- 
vaders, and overtook them on the banks of the Murg, when a partial action 
ensued which, though indecisive, was unfavorable to the Austrians. After 
this slight repulse, the Archduke advanced the Saxons on his left toward 
the French right in the mountains and pushed his centre to Malsch, where 
Moreau attacked him on the 9th of July : a general action took place, but 
still without important results, the Austrians merely retaining possession of 
the centre of the field, while their left was driven back. The Archduke 
now had an opportunity to strike a decisive blow by pressing forward to 
the base of Moreau's position, crushing Desaix and surrounding St. Cyr 
in the mountains ; but by so doing he would, at the same time, have ex- 
posed the Austrian dominions to Moreau's advance. He chose the more 
prudent course, and withdrew in the evening to Pforzheim, preparatory ta 
marching by the Neckar into the Bavarian plains. 

On the 14th of July, the Imperialists broke up from Pforzheim and 
retired slowly and in good order toward Stutgard and the right bank of 
the Neckar. By this means, they drew nearer the army of Wartensleben, 
and gained a central and interior line of communication. On the 25th, 
the Austrian forces were concentrated on the right bank of the Neckar, 
between Cronstadt and Esslingen, where Moreau attacked them on the 
following morning with his whole centre and left wing, but no result fol- 
lowed the action, as both parties remained on the field. The Archduke 
continued his retrograde movement until he reached Neresheim, where, 
having joined his left wing, which had retired through the Black Forest, 
he attacked the position of Moreau, defeated his right wing, and would 
have gained an important victory, had all his troops come up in time to 
follow the retreating masses of the French. 

Jourdan, after having remained a few days at Frankfort, and levied a 
heavy contribution on that flourishing city, marched on the great road to 
Wurtzburg, to cooperate with Moreau in an advance into the Empire. 
Wartensleben retired at his approach, and Wurtzburg fell into the hands 
of the French. Wartensleben slowly continued his retreat until the 18th 
of August, when he crossed the Naab, where he awaited a junction with 
the Archduke. That commander arrived on the 20th, and being now 
superior in force to the pursuing army of Jourdan, he resumed the offen- 
sive, attacking the French advanced guard under Bernadotte, on the 22nd, 
whom he drove back with loss into the mountains. He then dispatched 
Hotze with a sufficient force to continue the pursuit of Bernadotte, and 
himself turned upon Jourdan, at Amberg, on the 22nd, The French made 



a feeble resistance, and, but for the firmness of Ney, who checked the 
pursuit of the Austrians, would have experienced a terrible defeat. Jour- 
dan's position was now extremely critical ; but after a painful retreat of 
six days, during which Ney continued to protect his rear, he extricated 
himself from the mountains and reached Schweinfurt on the Maine. 
Hotze passed that river on the 1st of September and retook Wurtzburg, 
where he was joined by the Archduke on the 2nd. Jourdan, deeming it 
necessary to gain a respite from the Austrian pursuit by a general attack, 
and being ignorant of the Archduke's arrival, assaulted the Austrian lines 
on the 3rd ; but he was so severely handled, that he was glad to escape 
into the forest of Gramchatz without being entirely broken by the imperial 
cavalry. The French continued their retreat toward Lahn, which they 
reached on the 9th in a disorganized state, after suffering immense loss 
in prisoners and artillery- At Lahn they were joined by the blockading 
force from Mayence, fifteen thousand strong, and by ten thousand men 
from the army of the north ; so that their numbers were again equal to 
their pursuers. But the Archduke attacked them at Lalm and afterward 
at Altenkirchen, defeating them in both instances. The French army 
was in such a disordered condition, that they retreated to Bonn and 
Neuweid, and remained in total inactivity for the remainder of the cam- 

Moreau was now in a dangerous situation, having advanced into the 
heart of Bavaria, while the Archduke was thus driving Jourdan to ex- 
tremity : the defiles of the Black Forest were in his rear, he was distant 
two hundred miles from the Rhine, threatened by Latour with forty thou- 
sand men on one flank, and by the Archduke and Nawendorf with twenty- 
five thousand on the other. He was, nevertheless, at the head of a superb 
army of seventy thousand men, and no detached columns could prevent 
his retreat. He immediately commenced a retrograde movement, but in 
perfect order ; and when he approached the defiles of the Black Forest, 
he encountered Latour at Biberach, and totally defeated him. He then 
entered the Black Forest, and by a well-concerted and deliberate march, 
safely accomplished a retreat which has ever since been regarded as 
equivalent to a victory. 

The Archduke pursued the retreating army by a different line of march, 
and came up with Moreau at Emmendingen, where a general action took 
place, in which the French were routed with a loss of two thousand men. 
The Imperialists followed up this success, intending to renew the combat 
on the following day ; but Moreau retreated during the night to Schlien- 
gen, a strong position, where he was determined to make a stand and await 
the attack of the Austrians. Here, again, the Archduke was successful ; 
he drove the Republicans from their intrenchments with great loss, and 
was prevented from totally overthrowing them only by the broken char- 
acter of the ground over which they retreated, where his cavalry could 
not act efficiently, 

Moreau, having during the night reached the borders of the Rhine, 
crossed that river on the day following without molestation, and proposed 
an armistice, which the Austrians declined. He then marched into Kehl, 
to which place the Archduke promptly laid siege on the 9th of October. 
The defence was long and obstinate ; but the perseverance and bravery 
of the victorious Austrians, proved at last an overmatch for the garrison : 
after a series of attacks and bombardments, the fortress was, on the 9th 


of January, 1797, carried by assault. Henningen was next invested, and 
evacuated by capitulation on the 31st of the same month. 

This event terminated the campaign of 1796 in Germany : a campaign 
the most remarkable that had yet occurred, excepting that of Na'poleon 
in Italy. 

In August of this year, the treaty between France and Spain, already 
referred to, was brought to a conclusion. By this treaty, the two powers 
mutually guaranteed to each other their dominions, both in the Old and 
New World, and engaged to assist each other in case of attack, with 
twenty-four thousand land troops, thirty ships of the line, and six frigates. 
This was followed, in the beginning of October, by a formal declaration 
of war on the part of Spain against Great Britain ; so that England, who 
had commenced the war with so many confederates, now saw herself not 
only deprived of her maritime allies, but the whole coast of Europe, from 
Texel to Gibraltar, was arrayed in fierce hostility against her. Impressed 
with the danger of these concurrent circumstances, and desirous, also, of 
silencing the clamor of the party who denounced the war as unnecessary 
and impolitic, Mr. Pitt, at the close of this year, renewed his overtures for 
a general peace. But the liberal terms proposed by Great Britain were 
haughtily rejected, and the negotiations brought to a summary conclusion 
on the 17th of December. 

Ireland, about this period, was in an alarming condition. The success- 
ful issue of the French Revolution, had stimulated a host of reckless 
adventurers to project a similar revolt against the authority of England, 
and more than two hundred thousand men were engaged in a conspiracy 
to overturn the established government. Overlooking the miseries and 
horrors which the convulsions in France had occasioned, and, withoul 
considering how an insular power was to maintain itself against the naval 
force of England, the disaffected in Ireland rushed blindly into the project. 
They were enrolled under generals, colonels, and other officers in all the 
counties, arms were secretly provided, and nothing was wanting but the 
arrival of the French troops. These preparations, too, were made with 
such secrecy, that the British government had little warning of their dan- 
ger ; while the French Directory, accurately informed of the whole, were 
prepared to turn it to the best account. Hoche, at the head of a hundred 
thousand men, on the shores of La Vendee and Brittany, was ready to 
make the descent ; and an expedition was fitted out at Brest, consisting of 
fifteen ships of the line, to carry each six hundred soldiers, twelve frigates 
and six corvettes, to carry each two hundred and fifty, and transports and 
other vessels to carry, in all, twenty-five thousand. This armament was 
to be joined by seven ships of the line from Rochefort. 

To distract the attention of Great Britain, the most contradictory accounts 
were circulated as to the object of this expedition ; sometimes, it was in- 
tended for the West Indies ; at other times, for Portugal ; but the British 
government soon suspected where the blow was really to fall. Orders 
were transmitted to Ireland to hold the militia in readiness ; a vigilant 
watch was kept on the coast, and all the cattle and provisions ordered to 
the interior counties, on the first appearance of the enemy. The expedi- 
tion set sail on the 15th of December, but it encountered disasters from 
the very moment of its leaving the harbor. A violent tempest arose, and, 
although the mist which accompanied it enabled the French admiral to 
elude the vigilance of the British squadron, one ship of the line struck on 


the rocks at Ushant, and went down, several others were much damaged, 
and the fleet was entirely dispersed. On the 31st of December, Admiral 
Bousset made his way back to Brest, where he was soon followed by the 
scattered divisions of his fleet, after two ships of the line and three frigates 
had been lost : one of the former, by the violence of the tempest, and the 
others by the attacks of the British squadron. 

The close of this year was marked by the death of the Empress Cathe- 
ine, of Russia, and the accession of Paul to the throne. Few sovereigns 
will occupy a more conspicuous place in the page of history, and few have 
left in their conduct on the throne, a more exalted reputation, than the 
Empress Catherine : yet her high qualities as a sovereign were counter- 
balanced by the vices of her private life, and it might, perhaps, be said of 
her, even more truly than of Elizabeth of England, that " if to-day she 
was more than a man, to-morrow she would be less than a woman." 

The end of the same ye"ar witnessed the resignation of the presidency 
of the United States of America by General Washington, and his volun- 
tary retirement into private life. Modern history has not another character 
so spotless to commemorate. Invincible in resolution, firm in conduct, 
incorruptible in integrity, he brought to the helm of a victorious Republic 
the simplicity and innocence of rural life ; he was forced into greatness 
by circumstances, rather than led into it by inclination ; and he prevailed 
over his enemies rather by the wisdom of his designs, and the perseve- 
rance of his character, than by any extraordinary genius in the art of 
war. He was the first to recommend a return to pacific councils when 
the independence of his country was secured, and he bequeathed to his 
fellow-citizens, on leaving their government, an address to which no com- 
position of uninspired wisdom can bear a comparison. He was a Crom- 
well, without his ambition ; a Sylla, without his crimes ; and after having 
raised his country to the rank of an independent State, he closed his career 
by a voluntary relinquishment of the power which a grateful people had 



THE aspect of affairs in England had never been so clouded since the 
commencement of the war, nor indeed during the whole of the 18th century, 
as at the opening of the year 1797. The negotiations for peace had just 
been unpropitiously terminated, and the national burdens were daily 
increasing under the operations of a war which held out no promise of 
success. Party spirit raged with uncommon violence in every quarter 
of the kingdom ; insurrections prevailed in many districts of Ireland, dis- 
content and suffering in all ; commercial embarrassment was rapidly 
increasing, and the continued pressure on the Bank, threatened a total 
dissolution of public credit. The consequence of this accumulation of 
disasters was a rapid fall of public securities ; the three per cents sold as 
low as -51, having fallen to that from -98, where they stood at the break, 
ing out of the war. 


For a long period, the Bank had experienced a pressure for money, 
owing partly to the demand for gold and silver, which resulted from the 
distresses of commerce, and partly to the great drains on the specie of the 
country, occasioned by the large loans made to the Imperial government. 
As early as January, 1795, the influence of* these causes was so severely 
felt, that the Bank directors informed the Chancellor of the Exchequer of 
their wish, that he would so arrange his finances as not to depend on any 
further assistance from them ; and during the whole of that and the follow- 
ing year, the peril of continued advances for the Imperial loans, were 
strongly and earnestly represented to the government. The pressure 
arising from these causes was brought to a crisis at the close of 1796, by 
a. run upon the country banks, which arose from the dread of invasion, 
and the anxiety of every man to convert his paper into cash, in the troubled 
times which seemed to be approaching. These banks, as the only means 
of averting bankruptcy, applied from all quarters to the Bank of England ; 
the panic extended to the metropolis ; and, such was the run upon that 
institution, it was reduced to payment in sixpences, and stood on the verge 
of insolvency, when an order in council was interposed for its relief, sus- 
pending cash payments until the sense of Parliament could be taken on 
the best means of restoring the circulation, and sustaining the public and 
commercial credit of the country. 

This measure of Mr. Pitt excited a vehement debate in the national 
legislature, and all over the country ; but it was approved by both houses 
of Parliament, and a bill passed, providing that the Bank of England 
notes should be received as a legal tender by the collectors of taxes, and 
have the effect of stopping the issue of arrest on mesne process, for pay- 
ment of debt between man and man. The bill was limited in its operation 
to the 24th of June ; but it was afterward renewed from time to time, and 
in November, 1797, extended till the conclusion of a general peace. 
Indeed, the obligation on the Bank to pay in specie was not imposed until 
the act of Mr. Peel, in 1819. Such was the commencement of the paper 
system in Great Britain, which ultimately produced such astonishing 
effects ; which enabled the government, for so long a period, to carry on 
so costly a war, and to maintain for years armaments greater than had 
been raised by the Roman Empire, in the zenith of her power. 

The supplies voted by Parliament for the year 1797, were on a scale 
commensurate to the emergency. The land forces were raised to one 
hundred and ninety-five thousand, of whom sixty-one thousand were in 
the British Islands, and the remainder in the colonial dependencies of the 
empire. The ships in commission were one hundred and twenty-four of 
the line, eighteen of fifty guns, one hundred and eighty frigates, and one 
hundred and eighty-four sloops. This great force, however, being scat- 
tered over the whole globe, could not assemble on any one point a fleet 
which, numerically, was equal to those that her allied antagonists could 
bring against her. It was at this time that the famous mutiny in the feet 
took place. 

A feeling of discontent had for a long time prevailed in the navy, without 
having attracted the serious attention of the government. It was in part 
brought to a crisis by the insubordinate spirit of the times, but it had its 
origin in a variety of grievances, which had grown up with the naval 
system of England. The prevalence of these discontents was made 
known to Lord Howe and the Lords of the Admiralty, by a variety of 



anonymous communications, but when inquiry was made of the captains 
of the individual ships, they all denied the existence of any mutinous 
disposition among the men. Meanwhile, however, a vast conspiracy, 
unknown to them, was already organized ; and it was brought to maturity 
on the return to port of the Channel fleet, in the beginning of April ; when, 
on making the signal, on board the Queen Charlotte, to weigh anchor, the 
crew, instead of obeying, gave three cheers, which were returned by 
every vessel in the fleet, and immediately the red flag of mutiny was run 
up to each mast head. The officers strove in vain to exert their authority ; 
yet the mutineers, though refusing absolutely all obedience, resorted to no 
overt act of violence and bloodshed. They drew up a remonstrance, 
stating their grievances, and forwarded it in duplicate to the Admiralty 
and the house of Commons. The Board of Admiralty was at once trans- 
ferred to Portsmouth ; the demands of the seamen, having been found, for 
the most part, equitable, were acceded to; and Lord Howe at length 
persuaded the men to return to their duty, after promising them entire 
amnesty for the past. Order being thus happily restored, the fleet, consist- 
ing of twenty-one ships of the line, put to sea, and resumed the blockade 
of the harbor of Brest. 

Hardly was this commotion at an end, however, when a still more 
serious mutiny broke out in Lord Duncan's squadron at the Nore, which 
extended to every vessel in the fleet excepting his lordship's own line-of- 
battle ship and two frigates. A man named Parker was at the head of 
this mutiny, and the demands he made related in part to the distribution 
of prize money, which had been overlooked by the other mutineers ; but 
he went to such extravagant lengths in other respects, and couched his 
demands in such a menacing strain, that the government could not pos- 
sibly entertain his petitions. Fortunately for Great Britain and for tht 
cause of freedom throughout the world, a monarch was on the throne 
whose firmness no danger could shake, and a minister was at the helm 
whose capacity was equal to any emergency. They denied the petition 
peremptorily, and adopted the most energetic measures to sustain their 
authority. All the buoys in the mouth of the Thames were removed ; 
Sheerness, which was threatened by the insurgents, was garrisoned with 
four thousand men ; red-hot balls were kept in constant readiness ; Til- 
bury fort was armed with one hundred pieces of heavy cannon ; and a 
chain of gun-boats was sunk to debar all access to the harbor. These 
measures were nobly responded to by Parliament, almost every one of 
the opposition following the lead of Mr. Sheridan, and throwing himself 
into the breach with the ministry. An act was promptly passed by both 
houses forbidding all communication with the sailors in mutiny, under 
penalty of death, and imposing a like penalty on any one who should 
attempt to seduce either soldiers or sailors from their allegiance. A nego- 
tiation was then entered into by the Admiralty, which was protracted from 
day to day, until by degrees the sailors became sensible of the desperate 
character of their enterprise, and man by man, and crew by crew, with- 
drew from their perilous compact, slipped the cables, one after another, 
of their respective ships, and took refuge under the cannon of Sheerness; 
until at length, on the 15th of June, twenty- four days after the mutiny 
began, every vessel was placed under the control of the government. 
Parker, the leader of the mutiny, and several of his more prominent 
associates were executed ; but the greater part under sentence of death, 
were nardoned bv royal proclamation. 


But, wna ever may have been the internal dissensions of the British 
navy, its external operations were fraught with terror to its enemies. 
Early in February, the Spanish fleet of twenty-seven ships of the line 
and twelve frigates set sail for Brest, with a view of raising the blockade 
of that harbor, forming a junction with the Dutch fleet, and sweeping the 
British squadron from the Channel. Admiral Jarvis, who was stationed 
off the coast of Portugal with fifteen ships of the line and six frigates, 
immediately made sail in pursuit, and encountered the enemy off Cape 
St. Vincent. 

The British admiral pushed boldly through the centre of the hostile 
fleet, doubled with his whole force on nine of the Spanish ships, and by 
a vigorous cannonade drove them to leeward, so as to prevent their taking 
any part in the engagement which followed. As soon as the Spanish 
admiral saw the effect of this manoeuvre, which at a blow reduced the 
number of his effective ships so nearly to an equality with the British 
squadron, he wore around and endeavored to bring the remainder of his 
fleet into communication with this repulsed detachment ; but Commodore 
Nelson, who was in the sternmost ship of the British line, disregarded his 
orders for the day, stood across the bows of the Spanish admiral's vessel, 
and ran his own ship between two of the enemy's three-deckers the 
Santissima Trinidada, of one hundred and thirty-six guns, and the San 
Josef, of one hundred and twelve. The former of these two soon struck to 
Nelson's tremendous broadsides. Captains Collingwood and Trowbridge 
immediately followed the example of Nelson, engaged, indifferently, one 
or two at a time of the Spanish three-deckers, though their own vessels 
were but seventy-fours, and soon gave the Spanish admiral abundant 
occupation with the affairs of the main body of his fleet. The action 
now became general, and was continued through the remainder of the 
day, at the close of which the Spaniards retreated into Cadiz, leaving two 
three-deckers and two seventy-fours in the hands of the British. Two 
other ships had hauled down their colors in the action, but not being taken 
possession of in season by their captors, they made good their escape with 
the remainder of the fleet. 

In the beginning of October, the Dutch fleet, taking advantage of the 
absence of the British blockading squadron, which had been driven to 
Yarmouth Roads by stress of weather, sailed from the Texel for Brest. 
It consisted of fifteen ships of the line and eleven frigates under the com- 
mand of De Winter. As soon as Admiral Duncan was apprised by his 
cruisers that the Dutch fleet was at sea, he weighed anchor with all haste, 
and neared the hostile squadron before it was out of sight of the shore of 
Holland. Duncan's fleet comprised sixteen ships of the line and three 
frigates. His first care was to place his ships in such a position as to 
cut off the enemy from returning- to the Texel ; after which he bore down 
upon them and found them drawn up in order of battle about nine miles 
off the coast, between Camperdown and Egmont. He commenced the 
attack by breaking the enemy's line and running between them and the 
shore, which prevented the Dutch vessels from withdrawing into the shal- 
lows out of reach of the British fire for the Dutch ships were of lighter 
draught than the English. The action was continued with great spirit 
for some hours, yard-arm to yard-arm, and in the event twelve ships of 
the line struck to the British fleet ; but, owing to the gale, some of them 
were not secured in time and made their escape : and of (hose that were 


secured, two were retaken by their crews on the homeward passage, and 
one was so disabled that she went to the bottom ; but eight line-of-battl* 1 
ships and two of fifty-six guns were brought safely into Yarmouth Roads. 

These two victories filled all Europe with astonishment: the first, by 
the proof it afforded of the decided superiority of British seamanship, tho 
English fleet having defeated twice their own number of Spanish vessels; 
and the second, by the unexampled proportion of the enemy's ships that 
were captured. But the effects on the domestic security and public spirit 
of Great Britain, were far more important. Despondency was felt no 
longer. Bonfires and illuminations were universal ; enthusiasm spread 
to every breast, and amid the roar of artillery and the festive light of 
cities, faction disappeared and opposition sunk into neglect. From these 
victories may be dated that concord among all classes and that resolute 
British spirit which never afterward deserted the country. 

The illustrious statesman, to whose genius and foresight the first devel- 
opment of the spirit that led to these consequences is, under Providence, 
to be ascribed, was in part permitted to witness the result of his labors in 
the cause of freedom. Mr. Burke, whose health had been broken by the 
death of his son, and who had long labored under severe and increasing 
weakness, breathed his last at his country-seat of Beaconsfield, on the 9th 
of July, 1797. His counsels on English politics, during his last hours, 
were of the same direct, lofty and uncompromising spirit, which had ever 
made his voice sound like the note of a trumpet to the heart of England. 
*' Never succumb," said he, to his surrounding friends. "It is a struggle 
for your existence as a nation. If you must die, die with the sword in 
your hand. But I have no fears whatever for the result. There is a 
salient living principle in the public mind of England, which requires 
only a proper direction to enable her to withstand this or any other fero- 
cious foe. Persevere, therefore, till this tyranny be overpast." 

The prospects of the allied forces for the campaign of 1797, were over- 
clouded by the death of the Empress Catherine, inasmuch as her succes- 
sor, the Emperor Paul, refused to carry out her projects and sustain her 
policy in regard to the war against France : the burden of the contest, 
therefore, rested on Austria and Great Britain alone. 

The relative position of the belligerent parties at the close^of 1790, ren- 
dered it apparent that the Alpine frontier would be the most assailable 
point of the Austrian dominions on the opening of the next campaign. The 
French Directory, therefore, though they had grown too jealous of Napo- 
leon's abilities and rising fame to intrust him with all the force he soli- 
cited, sent him a detachment of twenty thousand choice troops under 
Bernadotte and Delmas, which raised the army of Italy to sixty-one 
thousand men, independent of sixteen thousand who were scattered from 
Ancona to Milan, and employed in overawing the states in the rear, and 
protecting the communications of the army. The Austrians were equally 
aware of the exposed situation of their southern frontier, and ordered 
large reinforcements of troops to that quarter; but they were dilatory in 
their movements, and the most efficient part of the army did not arrive 
until it was too late for them to be of any service in the issue of the 

Napoleon commenced his operations on the 10th of March, by a forward 
movement, directing his march toward the position of the Archduke, 
whose army, thirty-five thousand strong, was drawn up on the left bank 


of the Tagliamento. This stream, after descending from the mountains, 
separates into several fordable branches, and the ground for a great ex- 
tent between them is covered with stones and gravel. The Austrians were 
in order of battle when the French arrived on the opposite bank of the 
river ; and Napoleon, seeing them so well prepared to oppose his passage, 
had recourse to a stratagem. He ordered his troops to retire out of the 
reach of the Austrian artillery, establish a bivouac, and begin to cook 
their food : when the Archduke, supposing the French had abandoned the 
intention of an attack for the day, withdrew his forces into their camp in 
the rear. When all was quiet, the signal was given by the French 
general : the soldiers ran to arms, formed with great rapidity, advanced 
in columns by echellon, flanking each other in fine order, and precipi- 
tated themselves into the river. The precision and beauty of the move- 
ment resembled the exercise of a field-day. The Austrian cavalry hast- 
ened to the spot, and charged the French infantry on the edge of the water, 
but it was too late. The French had gained their position, and kept 
it. The firing soon became general along the line ; and the Archduke, 
seeing the passage achieved and his flank turned, and being, besides, un- 
willing to engage in a decisive action before the arrival of his veterans 
from the Rhine, ordered a retreat. The French light troops pursued him 
for four miles; during which time, the Imperialists lost six pieces of 
cannon and five hundred men, and also, what was of more importance, 
they lost the moral effect of a first success. 

Meanwhile, Massena had effected a passage at St. Daniel and made 
himself master of Osopo, by which means he cut off the Archduke's 
retreat by the direct road to Carinthia : the latter therefore determined to 
regain it by the cross-road which followed the Isonzo, as Napoleon would 
probably choose the Carinthian road to advance on Vienna. For this 
purpose, he dispatched his parks of artillery, and the division of Bayalitch 
by the Isonzo toward Tarwis, while the remainder of his forces retired by 
the Lower Isonzo. Napoleon now pushed forward to Gradisca, situated 
on the Lower Isonzo, and garrisoned by three thousand men. Bernadotte 
first assailed this place, but he was repulsed with a loss of five hundred 
men ; Serrurier, however, soon appeared on the heights in the rear, when 
the garrison was forced to surrender with ten pieces of artillery. Berna- 
dotte next moved upon Laybach, and took possession of it, while a thou- 
sand horse occupied Trieste, the greatest harbor of the Austrian dominions. 
Massena followed up his success at Osopo, by taking Col-de-Tarwis, the 
crest of the Alps, which commands the two valleys descending to Carin- 
thia and Dalmatia. The Archduke made a great effort to retake this 
important post, but after a desperate and bloody action on its snowy 
heights, he was at last forced to leave it in the hands of the French. 
When Napoleon found himself securely in possession of this post, he 
pressed forward and gained the defiles in advance of Bayalitch; who, 
now having become involved in these rocky passes, and completely 
surrounded by superior forces, was obliged to surrender himself and his 
whole division prisoners, with all his artillery and baggage. The French 
troops had now passed the Alps, established themselves in the fertile 
plains that stretch beyond them into Germany, and were encamped within 
sixty leagues of Vienna, with an army of forty-five thousand men. 

But, though Napoleon had thus far conducted the campaign triumph- 
antly, he began now to be embarrased by his success. The Venetian 


provinces, taking advantage of his absence, were preparing to revolt, 
and threatened his communications in the rear; he had just received a 
dispatch from Moreau, announcing his inability to support him in his 
contemplated advance on the Austrian capital; and the Directory were 
too jealous of his success to forward any further assistance. Hence, as 
his army was too small in numbers to warrant his marching unassisted 
'into the heart of the Austrian dominions, he resolved to make proposals 
of peace to the Archduke, taking care, at the same time, to press vigor- 
ously on the retreating Imperialists, in order to support his negotiations. 
The latter part of his policy was maintained with such energy that, on 
the 6th of April, he had driven everything before him as far as Judem- 
berg, his advanced guard occupied Leoben, and the terror he inspired in 
the capital was so great that the several members of the Emperor's family, 
together with the archives of the nation, were sent into Hungary. On 
the 7th of April, the chief of the Archduke's staff, Bellegarde, presented 
himself at the outposts of the French army, and a suspension of hostilities 
was agreed on at Leoben for five days. 

On the 9th of April, the treaty was concluded at Judemberg; and as 
the French commissioners had not arrived, Napoleon signed it in his 
own name on behalf of the French government. Its principal articles 
were, 1. The cession of Flanders to the Republic, and the extension of 
its frontier to the Rhine. 2. The cession of Savoy to the same power, 
and the extension of its territory to the summit of the Piedmontese Alps. 
3. The establishment of the Cis-Alpine Republic, including Lombardy, 
the states of Modena, Cremona and the Bergamasque. 4. The Oglio was 
fixed on as the boundary of the Austrian possessions in Italy. 5. The 
Emperor, in return for so many sacrifices, was to receive the whole con- 
tinental states of Venice, including Illyria, Istria, Friuli, and Upper Italy 
as far as the Oglio. 6. Venice was to obtain, in return for these losses, 
Romagna, Ferrara and Bologna, wrested by the French from the pope. 
7. The important fortresses of Mantua, Peschiera, Porto Legnago, and 
Palma Nuovo were to be restored to the Emperor on the conclusion of a 
general peace, together with the cky and castles of Verona. 

This iniquitous partition of the neutral territories of Venice was an act 
of darker atrocity than the spoliation of Poland, and it failed to excite an 
equal degree of general indignation, only because it was accompanied 
by no heroism or dignity on the part of the vanquished. 

Venice exhibits one of the most curious and instructive instances in 
modern history, of the decline of a state without any rude external shock, 
from the mere force of internal corruption, and the long-continued direc- 
tion of the passions to selfish objects. The League of Cambray had, 
indeed, shaken its power; the discovery of the Cape of Good Hope had led 
to an abridgment of its resources; and the augmentation of the strength 
of the Trans- Alpine monarchies, had diminished its relative importance : 
but still, its wealth and population were such as to entitle it to a respect- 
able rank among the European states, and, if directed by energy and 
courage, would have given it a preponderating weight in the issue of this 
campaign. But centuries of peace had destroyed the courage of the 
higher orders; ages of corruption had extinguished the patriotism of the 
people ; and the continued pursuits of selfish gratification, had rendered 
all classes incapable of the sacrifices which the defence of their country 
required. The arsenals were empty; the fortifications decayed; the 


fleet, which once ruled the Adriatic, was rotting in the Lagunse ; and the 
army, which formerly faced the banded strength of Europe in the League 
of Cambray, was now drawn entirely from the semi-barbarous provinces 
on the Turkish frontier. With such a population, nothing grand or 
generous could be attempted ; yet it was hardly to be expected that the 
country of Dandolo and Carmaguolo should yield without a struggle. 

The proximity of the Venetian continental provinces to those which had 
recently been revolutionized by the Republican arms, ana the sojourn, 
ing of the French troops among the ardent youth of their principal 
cities, naturally and inevitably led to the rapid propagation of democratic 
principles among the inhabitants. This took place more particularly 
after the victories of Rivoli and the fall of Mantua had dispelled all 
dread of the return of the Austrian forces. Revolutionary clubs and 
committees were everywhere formed, who corresponded with the Repub- 
lican authorities of Milan, and openly expressed a wish to throw off the 
yoke of the Venetian oligarchy. These proceedings were secretly 
encouraged by Napoleon, who directed Captain Landrieux, chief of the 
cavalry-staff, to communicate with the malcontents, and give unity and 
effect to their operations. At the same time, to preserve the outward 
appearance of neutrality, he ordered General Kelmaine to forbid his 
officers and soldiers from counselling or assisting the disaffected. 

The result of these measures was soon apparent. On the 12th of 
March, a revolt broke out at Bergamo, and the insurgents, avowing that 
they were supported by the French, dispatched couriers to Milan and 
other towns of Lombardy, and besought the Republican commander of 
the castle to assist them with his troops, which, however, he declined to 
dc The example of Bergamo was soon followed by all the chief towns 
in the Venetian provinces. * 

These revolts excited the utmost alarm at Venice. The Senate dared 
not act openly against the insurgents, who declared themselves supported 
by the Republican commanders, but they dispatched Pesaro to Napoleon's 
head-quarters to complain of his officers. Napoleon feigned surprise at 
the intelligence thus communicated, though he positively declined to 
interfere in the matter; and at the same time, threatened Venice with 
vengeance if she proceeded to hostilities. In this extremity, the Venetian 
government knew not what course to pursue ; but while they were delib- 
erating, a counter revolution broke out in the provinces without their 
knowledge or authority, and several partial actions ensued between the 
two parties. Napoleon promptly availed himself of this as a ground of 
complaint, and sent an insolent letter to the Senate, demanding satisfac- 
tion for the revolt, in which some of his own troops had suffered. While 
this demand was under discussion, an event look place on the Adige 
which gave the French general too fair a pretext for breaking off all 
negotiation. A levy en masse of the Venetian peasantry had assembled 
at Verona, on the 17th of April, and put to death in cold blood four hun- 
dred wounded men in the French hospitals. General Ballaud, in com- 
mand of the forts, resented this atrocious cruelty by firing on the city 
with red-hot balls. An extensive conflagration ensued, when the inhab- 
itants, exasperated in turn, laid siege to the forts, and put to death the 
French garrison of one of them which capitulated. 

These excesses were speedily retaliated on the Venetians by the 
French troops. General Chabran approached Verona with his columns, 


shot the authors of the massacre, and levied a contribution on the city of 
eleven hundred thousand francs, on the 28th of April; and on the 3rd of 
May, Napoleon declared war against Venice. 

Meanwhile, Venice itself was a prey to faction, and in the last state of 
perplexity and distress. The senators met at the Doge's palace, and 
endeavored by concessions and promises, to arouse the patriotism of the 
people; but the revolutionary party, which was in the ascendant, refused 
all compromise, and forced the Senate to abdicate its authority. At this 
result, the shouts of the giddy multitude rent the sky, the tree of Liberty 
was planted on the Place of St. Mark, and the democrats entered, amid 
bloodshed and plunder, upon the exercise of their newborn sovereignty. 
A momentary reaction here took place, and a body of real patriots strove 
to resist the disorder : they were soon overpowered, however, by the 
revolutionists, who called in the French troops to their aid, and brought 
them in boats to the Place of St. Mark, where a foreign standard had not 
been seen for fifteen hundred years, but where the banner of freedom 
was never again to wave. 

The French troops were not long in securing to themselves the spoils 
of their revolutionary allies. The Golden Book, the record of the sena- 
tors of Venice, was burned at the foot of the tree of Liberty ; and while 
the democrats were exulting over the destruction of this emblem of their v 
ancient subjection, their allies were depriving them of the means of future 
independence. The treasures of the Republic were seized by the French, 
as were also the remnants of the navy ; though neither the one nor the 
other equalled in value what the captors anticipated. The revolutionary 
party discovered, when it was too late, the consequences of their conduct, 
and reaped the bitter fruits of their Republican alliance in a forced sub- 
jection to a foreign despotism, in the support of foreign troops, and in the 
spoliation of all the proud mementoes which decorated their capital. 

While these memorable events were taking place on the southern side 
of the Alps, the French armies on the Rhine, under Moreau, Desaix, 
Davoust and Hoche, were rapidly recovering their losses of the last cam- 
paign ; and Moreau had added greatly to his military fame by a brilliant 
passage of the Rhine at Diersheim, in presence and in spite of an Austrian 
army on the opposite bank : but these generals were prevented from taking 
advantage of the success with which they commenced the campaign, by 
the treaty of peace concluded with Napoleon. 

Prussia, during this eventful year, adhered steadily to the system of 
armed neutrality. The health of her king had long been visibly deelin. 
ing, and he at length expired at Berlin on the 16th of November. Though 
endowed neither with shining civil nor remarkable military talents, few 
monarchs have conferred greater benefits on their country than this sove- 
reign. He was succeeded by his son, Frederic William III., then twenty- 
seven years of age ; a man much better calculated than his father to take 
part in the stirring events which were so soon to agitate the continent of 

The progress of revolutionary principles in Italy began about this time 
to affect the people of Genoa. The government there was vested in an 
aristocracy which, although less jealous and exclusive than that of Venice, 
was far more resolute and determined. A treaty had been concluded 
with the French Directory, by which Genoa purchased its neutrality with 
the payment of two millions of francs, a loan of two millions more, and 


the recall of families exiled for their political opinions. But the mem. 
bers of the revolutionary club now insisted on far greater domestic 
concessions ; and as they were secretly encouraged by Napoleon, they 
soon rose in arms to enforce their demands. The patrician families, 
however, were not wanting in courage or ability : by a bold and skilful 
movement they completely crushed the insurrection, and, but for subse- 
quent foreign interference, would have maintained their government. It 
was not, however, consistent with the system of Republican ambition to 
allow a revolutionary party to be subdued in any country which the arms 
of France could reach. In the contest between the government and the 
insurgents, some Frenchmen who had taken an active part in the revolt 
were wounded and taken prisoners with the rest ; and Napoleon made 
this a pretext for throwing the weight of his authority into the democratic 
scale. It was vain for the government of Genoa to resist the power of 
France, however arbitrarily and unjustly applied: and the Genoese Senate 
of necessity submitted to a new Constitution, which placed the government 
in the hands of the democracy. The people in some sections made a 
brave resistance to this tyrannical imposition ; but this led only to new 
exactions on the part of the French, and thenceforward Genoa, having 
lost even the shadow of her independence, became a mere outwork of the 
French Republic. 

Meanwhile, Napoleon, sheathing for a time his victorious sword, estab- 
lished himself at the chateau of Montebello, near Milan ; a beautiful 
summer residence, overlooking a great pan of the plain of Lombardy. 
Negotiations for a final peace were there immediately commenced ; before 
the end of May the powers of the plenipotentiaries had been verified, and the 
work of treaties was in progress. 'The future Emperor of the West here 
held his court in more than regal splendor ; the ambassadors of the Em- 
peror of Germany, of the Pope, of Genoa, Venice, Naples, Piedmont and 
the Swiss Republic assembled to examine the claims of the several states 
which were the subject of discussion ; and here weightier matters were 
to be determined, and dearer interests were at stake, than had ever before 
been submitted to European diplomacy since the iron crown was placed 
on the brow of Charlemagne. Already, Napoleon acted the part of a 
sovereign prince ; his power exceeded that of any then living monarch ; 
and he had entered on that dazzling career which ended in the subjuga- 
tion of the world. The negotiations at Montebello were brought to a 
conclusion on the 17th of October, and the treaty of Campo Formio was 
the result. The articles of this treaty did not essentially differ from those 
agreed on between Napoleon and Austria at Judemberg, save that Mantua 
and Mayence were ceded to France. The treaty, however, contained 
some secret articles of importance, the most material of which regarded 
the cession of Salzburg to Austria, with Inviertil and Wasseburg on the 
Inn, from Bavaria ; the free navigation of the Rhine and the Meuse ; the 
abandonment of Frickthal by Austria to Switzerland ; and the providing 
of equivalents on the right bank of the Rhine, to the princes dispossessed 
on the left bank of that river. But it was expressly provided, that " no 
acquisition should be proposed to the advantage of Prussia" 

While the foreign relations of France were thus distinguished by tri- 
umph and conquest, her domestic government was in a state of turmoil 
and distress. National bankruptcy, with its thousand evils, had been 
publicly declared, and the general distress and ruin that ensued were 



beyond estimation. Political events, too, of vast importance were at hand. 
The election of May, 1797 when by the Constitution one-third of each 
house was changed produced an entire alteration in the balance of par- 
ties, a decided majority of Royalists having come into power. The mul- 
titude, ever ready to follow the victorious party, ranged themselves on 
the Royalist side, and a hundred newspapers thundered forth their decla- 
rations in the same cause. Pichegru was appointed president of the 
Council of Five hundred, and Barbe Marbois, also a Royalist, president 
of the Council of Ancients. Almost all the ministers were changed ; and 
the Directory was openly divided into two parties, the majority consisting 
of Rewbell, Barras and Lareveillere ; the minority, of Barthelemy and 
Carnot. The chief strength of the Royalist party, out of the Assembly, 
lay in the Club of Clichy ; that of the Jacobins, in the Club of Salm ; 
and the opposite factions soon grew so exasperated, that they mutually 
aimed at supplanting each other by means of a revolution. 

Before long, the legislative acts of the Councils, and the declarations 
of the Royalists in the tribune, in the Club of Clichy and in the public 
journals, awakened great anxiety among the Jacobins ; and the majority 
of the Directors became alarmed for their own official existence, as it 
was evident that the Councils would totally ruin the Republican party. 
It had already been ascertained that one hundred and ninety of the depu- 
ties were engaged to restore the exiled family, while the Directory could 
count on the support of only one hundred and thirty ; and the Ancients 
had resolved, by a large majority, to transfer the seat of the legislature 
to Rouen, on account of its proximity to the western provinces, where 
Royalist principles had always been decidedly maintained. In short, 
the Directory were aware that, for regicides, the transition was easy from 
the Luxembourg to the scaffold. 

In this extremity, Barras, Rewbell and Lareveillere resolved on de- 
cisive measures. They knew that they could count on the support of the 
army, and therefore drew toward Paris a number of regiments, twelve 
thousand strong. They next changed the ministry, appointing Francois 
de Neufchateau to the department of the Interior ; Hoche, to that of War ; 
Larouche, to that of the Police ; and Talleyrand, to that of Foreign Af- 
fairs. The sagacity of this last politician led him to incline, in all the 
changes of the Revolution, to what was about to prove the victorious side ; 
and his accepting office under the Directory at this crisis was strongly 
symptomatic of the chances that were accumulated in their favor. Na- 
poleon, too, resolved to support the Directory, and sent his aid-de-camp, 
Lavalette, to Paris, to observe the motions of the parties and communicate 
to him the earliest intelligence ; and he afterward dispatched Augereau 
to assist the Directory in their arrangements with the army. He de- 
clined going himself to the capital, until circumstances might render his 
presence there indispensable. 

The party against which these formidable preparations were directed 
was strong in numbers and powerful in eloquence, but destitute of the 
reckless hardihood and vigor which in civil convulsions usually command 
success. The military force immediately under their command was small, 
consisting of only fifteen hundred grenadiers of questionable loyalty : and 
in debating on the course proper to be pursued in the emergency, the 
majority of the Royalists were restrained by scruples of conscience as 
the friends of freedom and good order often are in a revolutionary crisia 
from taking the lead in acts of violence. 

1797.] HIS TORY OF EUROPE. 97 

The Directory, however, entertained no such scruples. They appointed 
Augereau .to the command of their troops, ordered them into Paris, and 
on the 3rd of September, at midnight, the inhabitants observed twelve 
thousand armed men defiling over the bridges, with forty pieces of can- 
non, and gradually occupying all the avenues to the Tuileries. Not a 
sound was heard but the measured tramp of the men, and the rolling of 
the artillery wheels, until the movement was completed ; when a signal 
gun was discharged that startled every one who heard it. The soldiers 
speedily surrounded the Hall of the Councils, where Augereau arrested 
Pichegru, Willot, and twelve other leaders of the assemblies, and con- 
ducted them to the Temple. By six o'clock in the morning, all was 
concluded. Several hundreds of the most powerful Royalists were in 
prison, the streets were filled with troops, and military despotism was 

It maybe presumed, that power thus obtained was not delicately used. 
Pichegru, and some fifty other members of the Councils, were condemned 
to transportation,; all the acts passed by the Royalist majority were 
annulled, and the liberty of the press was destroyed. The Directory 
carried on the government thereafter by military power alone ; three 
men took upon themselves to govern France on their own account, with- 
out either the sanction of law or the concourse of legal assemblies. 



ON the conclusion of the peace of Campo Formio, Napoleon returned 
to Paris, where he was received with enthusiastic admiration by all 
classes of the inhabitants. He lived, however, in the most retired man- 
ner, seldom appeared in public, wore the costume of the Institute, and 
avoided society excepting that of scientific men. But this manner of life 
was pursued only with a view to political effect. 

After a time, he grew restless under inaction ; and the Directory 
became alarmed at his popularity, indulging a well-grounded fear, that 
in these days of changes and revolutions, he might successfully contend 
with them for the possession of the government. Napoleon, therefore, 
soon resolved upon some new military exploit, and the Directory, anxious 
to be relieved from his presence, eagerly forwarded his views. A de- 
scent upon England was the first project, and it was the one most accept- 
able to the Directors ; but Napoleon, after a careful examination, decided 
against that, and resolved on an expedition to Egypt. The Directors, 
whose anxiety to employ him abroad overpowered every other consid- 
eration, reluctantly consented, and preparations to an extent commen- 
surate with the undertaking, were immediately set on foot. In the 
mean time, however, to anticipate the movements of the British navy, and 
prevent any interruption from that quarter in the Mediterranean, the 
descent upon England was made the ostensible object of the armament, 
arid the public journals were filled with speculations on the results of the 
anticipated conquest. 


The British government, aware of the great preparations which wore 
making over all France, yet doubtful where the blow was really to fali 
made every arrangement which prudence could suggest to avert the 
impending danger. The principal effoits of the Admiralty were directed 
to strengthen the fleet off Brest, and the coast of Spain, whence the 
threatened invasion might be expected to issue; at the same time, Nelson 
was sent into the Mediterranean with thirteen sail of the line and one ship 
of fifty guns. 

Napoleon arrived at Toulon on the 9th of May, and took command of 
the army. The fleet consisted of thirteen ships of the line, two of sixty- 
four guns, fourteen frigates, seventy- two brigs and cutters, and four hun- 
dred transports : it bore thirty-six thousand soldiers of all arms, and ten 
thousand sailors. On the 19th of May, the fleet set sail. It proceeded 
first to Genoa, and thence to Ajaccio and Civita Castellana ; and, having 
effected a junction with the squadrons in those harbors, bore away for 
Malta, where it arrived on the 10th of June. Before Napoleon left 
France, a secret arrangement had been made with the grand-master and 
principal officers of Malta for its surrender to the French, and they now 
took quiet possession of this immense fortress and its unrivalled harbor. 
Napoleon immediately put its 'batteries in condition, left a sufficient gar- 
ris.Mi to defend the place, and on the 19th of June sailed for Egypt. 

On the 20th of June, Nelson arrived at Naples ; he hastened thence to 
Messina, but learning that the French fleet had reached Malta and taken 
possession of it, he directed his course toward Alexandria, where he 
arrived on the 29th : but finding no enemy, he set sail for the north, 
imagining that the expedition of Napoleon was bound for the Dardanelles. 
It is a singular fact, that on the night of the 29th of June, the French and 
English fleet crossed each other's track without either party's being 
aware of it. 

The French fleet came in sight of the Egyptian shore on the 1st of 
July, and on the 2nd the troops were landed and marched to Alexandria, 
which place they carried by assault, after a brief resistance of the Turk- 
ish garrison. On the 6th of July, Napoleon set out for Cairo with thirty 
thousand men, part of whom were put on board a flotilla of boats, and the 
remainder proceeded by land across the Desert. After a march of five 
days, in which the men suffered immensely from heat and thirst, the land 
force formed a junction with the flotilla, and they proceeded in company 
up the Nile. On the 13th, the army reached Chebreiss, where they 
were attacked by Mourad Bey with a detachment of Mamelukes and 
native infantry. The Egyptians were quickly defeated with a loss of 
six hundred men, and retired in disorder toward Cairo. On the 21st of 
July, the French army came in sight of that place, and of the Pyramids 
on the opposite bank of the Nile. Here, Mourad Bey was intrenched, 
with his entire force of twelve thousand infantry and six thousand Mame- 

Napoleon advanced in five divisions formed in hollow squares, with the 
artillery at the angles, and the officers and baggage in the centre. As 
they approached h'is position, Mourad sallied forth at the head of his 
fiery Mamelukes who, considered as individual horsemen, were the finest 
cavalry in the world and bore down upon the French squares. Their 
charge was terrific, but the Republican infantry stood firm, presenting a 
wall of bayonets on every side whicV the horses could not penetrate ; and 


while the Mamelukes wheeled around and among the squares, in the 
vain endeavor to find or force an opening, the inner ranks of the French 
musketeers kept up a sustained fire at point-blank range, which mowed 
down their assailants by hundreds. This murderous contest was contin- 
ued until nearly one half of the Mamelukes were destroyed, when they 
retreated to their intrenchments. Napoleon pressed forward in pursuit, 
drove both cavalry and infantry toward the Nile, and so totally dispersed 
the. whole force, that not more than two thousand five hundred made their 
escape into Upper Egypt. This action decided the fate of Egypt ; the 
whole country submitted at once to the French arms, and Napoleon 
established himself at Cairo. 

Meanwhile, Nelson, having learned the real destination of the French 
fleet, returned to the Nile on the 1st of August, where he found the 
enemy's squadron drawn up in order of battle in the Bay of Aboukir. 
The French ships were at anchor close in-shore, and formed in a curve, 
with the concave side of the line toward the sea. As soon as Nelson had 
accurately examined the position of the enemy, he ordered one half of 
his fleet to penetrate on the inner side of the French line and come to 
anchor, while the other half anchored along the outer side, and thus 
doubled on the enemy's ships. The British fleet commenced this move- 
ment at three o'clock in the afternoon, and as they came up in succession, 
were received with a steady fire from the French broadsides. Five 
seventy- fours soon passed between the French line and the shore, enga- 
ging nine of their antagonists, while six others took post on the opposite 
side of the same ships. Another British vessel, the Leander, was inter- 
posed across the French line, where she prevented the remainder of the 
enemy's ships from assisting their comrades, and with her broadsides 
raked right and left those between which she was placed. 

It now grew dark, but both fleets were illuminated by the incessant 
discharge of more than two thousand pieces of cannon, and the volumes 
of flame and smoke that rolled over the bay, gave it the appearance of a 
terrific volcano. Victory soon declared for the British. Before nine 
o'clock, three ships of the line had struck, two were dismasted, and the 
Orient, of one hundred and twenty guns, was discovered to be on fire : 
the light of this burning vessel, soon rendered every ship in both fleets 
distinctly visible, and, by showing the shattered condition of the French- 
men, redoubled the ardor of the British seamen. At ten o'clock, the 
Orient blew up with a tremendous explosion, and for a few minutes, as 
by common consent, the firing on both sides ceased : but it was soon 
renewed, and continued until after midnight. At daybreak, the magni- 
rude of the victory was discovered. The Orient had disappeared, the 
frigate La Serieuse was sunk, and the whole French line, excepting the 
Guillaume Tell and the Genereux, had struck their colors : these ships, 
having been but slightly engaged, cut their cables, stood out to sea, and 

Honors and rewards were heaped by a grateful nation on the heroes 
of the Nile. Nelson was created a Baron, with a pension of two thousand 
pounds sterling to himself and his two immediate successors; the Grand 
Signior, the Emperor of Russia, the King of Sardinia, the King of Naples, 
and the East India Company made him magnificent presents, and his 
name was for ever embalmed in the recollection of his countrymen. 
When Mr. Pitt was reproached for not conferring a higher dignity on 



the conqueror, he replied, "Admiral Nelson's fame will bft coequal with 
the British name, and it will be remembered that he gained the greatest 
naval victory on record, when no man will think of asking whether he 
was created a baron, a viscount, or an earl." 

The battle of the Nile was a mortal stroke to the French expedition ; 
as it cut off all hope of the return of the army, and all means of preserv- 
ing the conquest Napoleon had achieved. Nor were its effects less 
important in Europe ; as it brought about an alliance between the courts 
of St. Petersburg, London and Constantinople against France ; and the 
unusual spectacle of a junction between the Russian and Turkish fleets 
in the Hellespont, on the 1st of September, helped to render memorable 
this astonishing victory. The squadron, thus combined, not being required 
on the coast of Egypt, steered for the island of Corfu, and established a 
rigorous blockade of that fortress and harbor. 

Being now excluded from intercourse with Europe, and menaced with 
a serious attack from the Turks, Napoleon resolved on an expedition into 
Syria, where the Sultan was assembling his forces. His army, however, 
was already greatly reduced by fatigue, sickness and the sword; and, 
after leaving behind him such garrisons as were indispensable to maintain 
his conquests, thirteen thousand men, with nine hundred cavalry and 
forty-nine pieces of cannon, constituted the whole of his disposable force. 
He set out for Syria on the llth of February, 1799, and as his march 
lay across the Desert, the troops suffered so greatly that it required all 
his efforts to keep them in their ranks. 

On the 4th of March, the army arrived at Jaffa, the Joppa of antiquity. 
Napoleon sent a flag of truce to the town and summoned it to surrender, 
but his messenger was beheaded on the spot. He immediately opened a 
fire of artillery on the walls, and on the 6th, the breach thus made being 
declared practicable, an assault took place. In the mean time, the 
grenadiers of Bon's division discovered an opening on the sea-side, and, 
by crowding into the city in the rear, decided the victory. A desperate 
carnage ensued, and the town was delivered up to the horrors of sack 
and pillage. During this scene of slaughter and rapine, four thousand 
of the garrison proposed to lay down their arms on condition of their lives 
being spared ; and Eugene Beauharnois (Napoleon's step-son) and Cro- 
sier both aids-de-camp of Napoleon took upon themselves to agree to 
the proposal. The prisoners were conducted to the head-quarters of 
the French commander, who ordered their arms to be tied behind their 
backs, and summoned a council of war to deliberate on their fate. For 
two days, the terrible question, What is to be done with these captives ? 
was debated. If they were sent back to Egypt, the force detached to 
guard them would weaken the army to inefficiency ; if they were libe- 
rated, they would increase the number of the already too numerous 
enemies of France ; if they were detained as prisoners in the camp, they 
would consume the scanty supplies of provisions indispensable for the 
support of the French soldiers. The alternative of putting them to death 
in cold blood presented itself and was adopted by Napoleon. This atro- 
cious massacre took place on the 10th of March. The unhappy victims 
were separated into small detachments, fettered, and shot down like beasts 
of prey by the French infantry. Their bones still remain in great heaps 
amid the sand-hills of the Desert a monument to the eternal infamy 
of Napoleon. 


The French army pursued its route, and on the 16th of Marcn arrived 
at Acre, a strong fortress on the shores of the Mediterranean, and distin- 
guished as a place of great importance in the wars of the Crusades. The 
town was well garrisoned, ably commanded by the Pacha of Syria, and 
supported by the English squadron in the bay, under the command of Sir 
Sidney Smith. 

This celebrated man, who had been wrecked on the coast of France 
and confined in the Temple, made his escape a few days after Napoleon' 
left Paris for Toulon; and after a variety of adventures arrived in 
England, where he was appointed to the command of the squadron in 
the Archipelago. Having received information of the intended attack 
on Acre, he hastened to that place, and arrived just two days before the 
appearance of the French army : his fleet consisted of the Tiger, eighty- 
four guns, the Theseus, seventy-four, and some smaller vessels. He 
immediately cooperated with the garrison, and aided in strengthening 
their defences; and on the day after his arrival, was fortunate enough to 
capture the French flotilla from Alexandria with the heavy artillery and 
stores for the siege, as it was creeping around the headlands of Mount 
Carmel : these guns were invaluable to the garrison, and their loss was 
irreparable to the French army. 

Napoleon commenced his attack on the 28th of March, but he was 
bravely repulsed; and he renewed the assault on the 1st of April with a 
similar result: and while he was thus unsuccessful in front, his rear was 
menaced by an army of Oriental militia, thirty thousand strong, who had 
been for some time assembling in the provinces and following his march. 
He retired from Acre, therefore, to give battle to this host at Mount 
Thabor, where he entirely routed them. In the mean time, the French 
cruisers succeeded in landing nine heavy guns at Jaffa, which being 
now transported to Acre, were of some assistance to the French army in 
resuming the siege of that place. 

On the evening of the 7th of May, an unknown fleet was seen on the 
verge of the horizon, and both besiegers and besieged were in the greatest 
anxiety to learn its purpose and destination; it was soon ascertained that 
the ships, thirty in number, were the Ottoman fleet dispatched thither to 
aid in the defence of Acre. 

Napoleon, seeing the necessity of pressing his attacks if he hoped to 
succeed, redoubled his efforts. He kept up a constant cannonade and 
bombardment during two days, and on the 10th of May made his final 
demonstration: but all was without avail- "he intrepidity of both the 
English and Turkish troops proved an overmatch for the desperate valor 
of the French, and Napoleon was compelled to retreat. The siege had 
cost him, in slain and wounded, nearly one half of his army and almost 
all his artillery and baggage, wnich latter fell into the hands of Sir 
Sidney Smith. ATlcr a painful 'retreat over the Desert, the remnants 
of the French army reached El-Arish on the 1st of June, and proceeded 
thence by easy marches to Cairo. 

On the 15th of July, Napoleon received intelligence of the landing of a 
large body of Turks in Aboukir Bay, and he immediately set off with all 
his disposable forces to meet them. He arrived on the 23rd at Alexan- 
dria, and on the 25th reached Aboukir, where the Turks were strongly 
intrenched on the peninsula: a position which, however capable of 
defence, offered no retreat in case of disaster. The result showed the 


error committed by the Turks in the choice of ground ; for in the action 
that took place, two thousand were slain, two thousand made prisoners, 
and five thousand driven into the sea by the impetuous charge of Murat's 
cavalry : thus, the whole army of nine thousand men was totally destroyed; 
an fiveni almost unparalleled in modern warfare. 



DURING the uncertainty which prevailed as to the destination of the 
French armament that eventually sailed for Egypt, the British govern- 
ment felt great anxiety to provide for the national defence, without incur- 
ring a ruinous expense by the augmentation of the regular army : and, 
under pressure of the danger to be apprehended from a French invasion, 
the ministry, with -the approbation of the king, ventured on the bold step 
of allowing regiments of volunteers to be raised in every part of the king- 
dom. This bill passed the House on the 6th of May; and, in a few 
weeks, one hundred and fifty thousand men were enrolled under the new 
law, and armed for the protection of the country. The event proved that 
the confidence of the government in the loyalty of the people was not 
misplaced. In no instance, did the volunteers thus raised fail in their 
duty, or swerve from the principles of patriotism which first brought them 
together. When they put on their uniform they cast off all the vacillating 
feelings of former years, and, in taking up their arms, they adopted the 
resolution to defend the cause of England to the last. 

While England was thus taking measures to secure herself from inva- 
sion, the French Directory were gradually extending their despotism over 
the states adjacent to France. The Dutch had now an opportunity to 
contrast the temperate government of the House of Orange with the demo- 
cratic rule which was substituted in its stead. Their trade was ruined, 
their navy defeated, their flag swept from the ocean, and their numerous 
merchant vessels were rotting in their harbors. A reaction in favor of the 
former order of things had, in consequence, become very general in the 
minds of the people ; which feeling the French Directory deemed it 
necessary to quell, by overthrowing the remnants of the aristocratic con- 
stitution, and vesting the government in a Directory of their own selection. 
The Dutch Assembly was, at this time, engaged in framing a Constitution, 
and the majority were resolved to establish it on the old federative prin- 
ciples; but the leaders of the minority, aided by the French troops, sur- 
rounded the council -hall during the session, arrested twenty-two of the 
prominent deputies of the Orange party, and the six commissioners of 
foreign relations. The remainder of the Assembly met early on the 
following morning, and, under the dictation of the bayonet, passed decrees 
sanctioning their acts of violence, and introducing a form of government 
on the model of that established in France. By this new Constitution, the 
privileges of the provinces were abolished; the ancient federal Union 
superseded by a Republic, one and indivisible; the provincial authorities 


changed iiuo functionaries emanating from me central government; a 
Council of Ancients and Chamber of Deputies established ; and the exe- 
cutive authority confided to a Directory of five members, all devoted to 
the interests of France. The sitting was terminated by an oath of hatred 
to the Stadtholder, the federal system, and the aristocracy ; and ten depu- 
ties who refused to take the oath were summarily deprived of their seats. 
So completely was the whole accomplished, under the terror inspired by 
the army, that some months afterward, when the means of intimidation 
were removed, a number of deputies who had joined in these acts of 
usurpation, resigned their seats, and protested against the part they had 
been compelled to take in the transaction. 

The people of Holland soon discovered, that in the pursuit of democratic 
power they had lost their ancient liberty. The first step of the new Direc- 
tory was the issuing of a proclamation, forbidding all petitions from cor- 
porate bodies or assemblages of men, and declaring that none would be 
received but from insulated individuals ; whereby they extinguished the 
national voice in the only quarter where it could make itself heard in a 
serious manner. All the public functionaries were appointed from the 
Jacobin party; numbers of people were banished or proscribed; and, 
under pretext of securing the public tranquillity, domiciliary visits and 
arrests were multiplied to an alarming extent. Individuals suspected of 
a leaning to the opposition, were deprived of the right of voting in the pri- 
mary assemblies ; and, finally, the sitting assembly declared itself the 
permanent Legislative Body thus suspending all elections by the people. 
These flagrant wrongs excited the utmost indignation throughout the coun- 
try, and the Directors soon became as offensive as they had formerly been 
agreeable to the populace. Alarmed at the position of affairs, and fearful 
of losing their influence in Holland, the French Directory ordered Gene- 
ral Daendels to take military possession of the government. He accord- 
ingly led two companies of grenadiers to the palace of the Directory, seized 
one member, and forced two to resign ; the other two made their escape. 
A provisional government was then formed, consisting of Daendels and 
two associates, nominated by the French Directory, without the slight- 
est regard to the wishes of the people or any pretence of authority from 
them. Thus, military despotism was the result of revolutionary changes 
in Holland, within a few years after they were first commenced, amid the 
general transports of the lower orders. 

Switzerland was the next object of the Directory's ambition. The 
constitutions of the Swiss Cantons were various. In some, as the Forest 
Cantons, they were highly democratic ; in others, as in Berne, essentially 
aristocratic : but in all, the great objects of government security to per- 
sons and property, freedom in life and religion were attained, and the 
aspect of the population exhibited a degree of happiness and prosperity 
unparalleled in any other part of the world. The military strength of 
Switzerland lay in the militia of the different Cantons ; which, though 
formidable if united and led by chiefs skilled in mountain warfare, was 
ill qualified to maintain a protracted struggle with such armies as the 
neighboring powers could bring into the field. 

The chief defect in the constitution of the Helvetic Confederacy was that, 
with the usual jealousy of the possessors of political power, it excluded the 
conquered provinces from a participation in the privileges enjoyed by th 
older Cantons ; and thus the seeds of disaffection were sown between the 



component parts of the state: yet, practically, this evil was of trifling 
weight, under the truly paternal and beneficent system of Swiss admin- 
istration ; nor would it have ever led to serious consequences, had the sim- 
ple minded and honest peasantry of Switzerland been left in the quiet 
enjoyment of such rights as were already conceded to them. But the 
proximity of Switzerland to France, and the contagion of French revo- 
lutionary principles, combined with the infamous system of Republican 
propagandism, were fatal to the peace of this devoted country. 

As early as July, 1797, the French envoy, Mengaud, was dispatched 
to Berne to insist on the dismissal of the English resident Wickham. and, 
at the same time, to set on foot intrigues with the democratic party, simi- 
lar to those which were practiced for the overthrow of Venice. By a 
prudent resolution of the English government, intended to save the Swiss 
from a controversy with their formidable neighbors, Wickham was recalled. 
The Directory, foiled in their attempt to involve the Swiss in a conflict, 
ordered their troops on the frontier to take possession of that part of the 
territory of Bale which was subject to the jurisdiction of the Cantons : but 
here, too, the French were unsuccessful, for the Swiss government con- 
fined itself to simple negotiations in reply to so glaring a violation of 
existing treaties. At length, Napoleon struck a chord in the Valteline, 
which soon vibrated with fatal effect throughout Switzerland, and, by rous- 
ing the spirit of democracy, prepared the country for subjugation. This 
province, consisting of five bailiwicks, and containing one hundred and 
sixty thousand inhabitants, extended from the source of the Adda to its 
junction with the Lake of Como. It had been formerly conquered by the 
Grisons from the Duke of Milan. Francis I. had guaranteed to them the 
enjoyment of it, and they had governed it with moderation and justice for 
three centuries. Napoleon, however, saw in this sequestered valley a 
place for inserting the wedge of dissolution into the Helvetic Confederacy ; 
and, in the summer of 1797, he sent his aid-de-camp Leclerc to the cottages 
of the province. It was not long before the inhabitants, seduced by his 
insidious counsels, rose in insurrection, claimed their independence, ex- 
pelled the Swiss authorities and hoisted the tricolor flag. Napoleon, 
chosen in the plenitude of his power at Montebello as mediator between 
the contending parties, pronounced a decree which settled the disputed 
points by annexing the whole insurgent territory to the Cis-Alpine Republic. 

This iniquitous proceeding, which openly encouraged every subject dis- 
trict in the Swiss Confederacy to declare its independence, had its due 
effect in the Valais, the Pays de Vaud, and other provinces, where the 
revolutionary spirit soon declared itself. This was followed by an act of 
open hostility on the part of France, the seizure, namely, of the province 
of Erguel, on the 15th December, by five battalions drawn from the army 
of the Rhine. An insurrection in the Pays de Vaud immediately took 
place ; and the French envoy, Mengaud, proclaimed that the governments 
of Berne and Fribourg should be held responsible for the persons and pro- 
perty of all those who addressed themselves to France for the restitution 
of their rights. On the 4th of January, 1798, General Menard, with ten 
thousand men, established his head-quarters at Ferney, near Geneva, to 
support the insurgents. These measures soon brought affairs to a crisis: 
the insurrections became general, and the Senate of Berne boldly deter- 
mined on resistance. They issued a proclamation calling on the shep- 
herds of the Alps to defend their country, and ordered out the militia, 


twenty thousand strong. Being still desirous to avoid proceeding to extre- 
mities, they informed the Directory that they would disband their militia 
if the invaders would withdraw. But the Directory no longer confined 
their pretensions to supporting the insurgents : they insisted on overturn- 
ing the whole Constitution of the country, forming twenty-two Cantons 
instead of thirteen, and creating a Republic, one and indivisible, with a 
Directory in all respects like that of France. 

As peace was now impossible, the Senate urged forward their prepara- 
tions. The Oberland en masse flew to arms, the shepherds descended 
from their glaciers, every valley sent forth its little horde of men, and the 
accumulating streams united like an Alpine torrent, forming a body of 
near twenty thousand combatants on the frontiers of Berne. The smaller 
Cantons followed the example : Uri, Underwalden, Schwytz, and Soleure, 
sent forth their contingents with alacrity ; and the peasants set out from 
their cottages, not doubting of triumph in the holy war of independence. 
The women fanned the generous flame, not only by encouraging their 
husbands and brothers to take up arms, but by themselves joining the ranks 
with a determination to share the perils and glories of the strife. Almost 
everywhere, the inhabitants of the mountains retained their allegiance ; 
the citizens of the towns and plains alone were deluded by the fanaticism 
of revolution. 

General D'Erlach, who commanded the Swiss troops, divided his army 
into three corps, of about seven thousand men each, who were so posted 
as to cover Fribourg, Buren and Soleure. Had D'Erlach acted on the 
offensive before the French forces were concentrated, he would probably 
have gained such decisive success as to encourage the loyal inhabitants, 
and confirm the patriotism of those who were wavering ; but by waiting 
the attack of the French, he yielded the advantage to General Brune, who, 
during the inaction of the Swiss, completed the organization of his troops. 
He moved, on the 2nd of March, toward Fribourg and Soleure, where the 
revolutionary partisans were the most numerous. His advance was hero- 
ically opposed by a single Swiss battalion, which would not yield until 
it was nearly cut to pieces ; but the garrisons of Fribourg and Soleure 
surrendered after a mere show of resistance ; and as by this defeat the 
position of D'Erlach was turned, he was forced to make a discouraging 
retreat at the very commencement of the campaign : a movement which 
led to the destruction of nearly one-half of his corps. Brune followed up 
his victory by an attack on the second Swiss corps, under Graffenreid; 
but here, the French veterans, although twice the numerical strength of 
their opponents', were repulsed with the loss of two thousand men and 
eighteen pieces of cannon. The third corps, now commanded by D'Erlach 
in person, was less fortunate : it was assailed by the division of Schawen- 
burgh, in front of Berne, and after an obstinate contest, maintained during 
the whole day, the Swiss were defeated, and Berne capitulated on the 
same night. Deplorable excesses followed the dispersion of the Swiss 
army. The brave D'Erlach was murdered by his own soldiers at Mun- 
zingen ; and Steiger, his second in command, barely escaped the same 
fate by a flight into Bavaria. Many other brave officers fell victims to 
the fury of the troops ; and the democratic party, by spreading the belief 
that the army had been betrayed by its leaders, occasioned the destruction 
of the only men who might have sustained the sinking fortunes of their 


The French, on their entrance into Berne, took possession of its treasury, 
with the public archives, and three hundred pieces of cannon and forty 
thousand muskets. The fall of this town was followed by an explosion 
of the revolutionary volcano over a great part of Switzerland. The people 
of Zurich and Lucerne rose in open insurrection, dispossessed the authori- 
ties, and hoisted the tricolor flag: the Lower Valaisans revolted against 
the Upper, and, with the aid of the French, made themselves masters 
of the castellated cliffs of Sion. Nearly all the level provinces joined 
the revolutionists. A new Constitution was speedily formed for the con- 
federacy, on the basis of that established in France in 1795 ; and it was 
proclaimed at Arau on the 12th of April. By this instrument, all Swit- 
zerland was comprised in one Republic; and the entire control of the 
government placed in the hands of five Directors, who evinced their quali- 
ties by passing a law to the effect, that whosoever spoke disrespectfully of 
the new authorities, should be punished with death. 

But while the rich and popular part of Switzerland was thus falling a 
prey to the revolutionary fever of the times, a more generous spirit ani- 
mated the shepherds of the small Cantons. The people of Schwytz, Uri, 
Underwalden, Glarus, Sargans, Turgovie and St. Gall, rejected the new 
Constitution. The inhabitants of these romantic and sequestered regions, 
communicating little with the rest of the world, ardently attached to their 
liberties, and inheriting all the dauntless intrepidity of their forefathers, 
were not to be seduced by the glittering offers of revolutionary freedom. 

Aloys Reding, a brave and experienced soldier who had fought against 
the French in Spain, took the lead in this resistance, with the hope that he 
might maintain a Vendean war amid the precipices and woods of the 
Alps, until the German nations were roused to his relief: but a district 
containing an entire population of only eighty thousand, could hardly 
accomplish what the three millions of Brittany and Vendee had failed to 
achieve. Reding began his heroic career by an attack on Lucerne, which 
speedily surrendered ; but the advance of a large body of French troops 
forced him to abandon his conquest, and concentrate his forces for defence. 
After meeting with several reverses, he took post on Morgarten with the 
little army of Schwytz, three thousand in number. Early in the morning 
of the 20th of May, a corps of seven thousand French soldiers appeared 
descending from the hills to the attack. The Schwytzers advanced to 
meet them, encountered them before they had reached the bottom of the 
slope, and forced them backward to the summit of the ridge. The battle 
now raged for the whole day, but the French were unable to dislodge the 
orave peasants from their position. During the night, both sides were 
reenforced by fresh troops ; and the next morning the battle was resumed 
with the same result. The rocks, the woods, the thickets, were bristling 
with armed men ; every cottage became a post of defence, every meadow 
a scene of carnage, and every stream was dyed with blood. Darkness 
put an end to the combat, and still the mountaineers were unsubdued : but 
in the night they received intelligence that a longer continuance of the 
struggle would be unavailing. The inhabitants of Uri and Underwalden 
had been driven into their valleys, a French corps was rapidly advancing 
in the rear of Morgarten, and Sargans and Glarus had submitted to the 
invaders. Slowly and reluctantly the men of Schwytz were brought to 
yield to the inexorable necessity ; they submitted to the persuasion of 
Reding, and agreed to a convention, by which they were to accept the 


Constitution and be allowed the use of their arms, the enjoyment of their 
religion and property ; and, on the other hand, the French troops were to 
withdraw from the frontier. The other small Cantons followed this exam- 
ple, and peace was for a time restored to that part of Switzerland. 

The period that followed these bloody hostilities, was one of bitter suffer- 
ing and humiliation to the conquered people. Forty thousand men lived 
upon them at free quarters; and the requisitions for the pay, clothing and 
equipments of these hard task-masters, furnished a sad contrast to the illu- 
sions which had seduced the urban population from their allegiance. It 
was in vain that the revolutionary authorities now themselves alive to the 
miseries they had brought on their country protested against the various 
spoliations of the French Directory and their still more rapacious commis- 
sioners : they were merely informed, in reply, that Switzerland was a coi- 
quered nation, and must submit to the lot of the vanquished. The Swiss 
Directors, in disgust resigned thoir places ; but this was equally unavailing; 
the vacancies were supplied by more subservient Directors, who formed a 
treaty of alliance, offensive and defensive, with France, binding Switzer- 
land to furnish a contingent of troops and to submit to the construction of 
two military roads through the Alps, one to Italy and one to Swabia : 
conditions far worse for Switzerland than would have been an annexation 
of that country to France ; since they imposed on the former all the bur- 
dens and dangers of war, without either its advantages or its glories. 

The discontent arising from all these grievances was fast increasing, 
when the imposition of the oath to the new Constitution brought matters to 
a crisis in the small Cantons : the shepherds of Underwalden unanimously 
declared that they would rather perish than take the oath ; and they were 
joined by the most determined men of Uri and Schwytz. Immediately, 
sixteen thousand French troops were dispatched to quell this revolt a 
force so overwhelming, that the mountaineers from the first despaired of 
success ; but they resolved to yield nothing, and die in defending their 
rights. In their despair, they neglected both discipline and method ; yet, 
such was the force of their native valor, three thousand shepherds kept at 
bay sixteen thousand of the bravest troops of France. Every hedge, thicket 
and cottage was obstinately defended ; the dying crawled into the hottest 
of the fire ; the women and children threw themselves on the enemy's 
bayonets ; but heroism and devotion were equally vain against such des- 
perate odds. Slowly but steadily the French columns gained ground, 
and their progress was marked by the flaming houses and bleeding corses 
of the inhabitants. Near the close of the action, a band of two hundred 
Schwytzers arrived on the field ; they were too late and too few to retrieve 
the battle, but they perished to a man after having slain twice their num- 
ber of the enemy. Night at length drew a veil over this scene of horror, 
which ended in the total subjugation of these Cantons to the stern despotism 
of France. 

Such tragical events were little calculated to induce other states to 
follow the example of the Swiss in leaguing themselves to the principles 
or leaders of French democracy. The Grisons took counsel from the 
disasters of their brethren in the Forest Cantons, and invoked the aid 
of Austria, who, by the authority of former treaties, now guaranteed and 
secured their independence. 

The Ecclesiastical States of Itajy were the next to be attacked. It 
had long been an avowed object of French Republican ambition, to revcu 




lutioruze the Roman people, and plant the tricolor flag in the city of 
Brutes: and fortune at length favored the Directory with a pretext for 
accomplishing this design. 

. Joseph Bonaparte, brother to Napoleon, had been appointed ambassador 
at the court of Rome ; but as he was deemed too honorable a man to be 
intrusted with the management of political intrigue, Generals Duphot 
and Sherlock were ordered to accompany him. The French embassy, 
under their direction, soon became a centre of revolutionary action; and 
the numerous ardent characters with which the Italian cities ever abound, 
flocked there as to a common focus, whence the next great explosion of 
democratic power was to be expected. On the 27th of December, 1797, 
a crowd assembled in Rome and moved to the palace of the French 
ambassador, where they exclaimed, "Vive la Republique Romaine !" and 
invoked the aid of the French in planting the tricolor flag on the Capitol. 
In this emergency, the papal ministers sent a regiment of dragoons to 
prevent a sortie of the revolutionists from the ambassador's palace ; and 
these troops gave notice to the insurgents that their orders were to allow 
no one to leave the place. Upon this, Duphot, indignant at being 
restrained by the pontifical forces, drew his sword, rushed down the 
staircase, and put himself at the head of a hundred and fifty armed 
Roman democrats, who were contending with the dragoons in the court- 
yard of the palace. He was instantly killed by a volley from the papal 
soldiers : a violent scuffle ensued, and after passing several hours in the 
greatest alarm, Joseph Bonaparte, with his suite, retired to Florence. 

This catastrophe, however obviously occasioned by the revolutionary 
schemes which were on foot and in agitation at the residence of the 
French ambassador, did literally take place within the precincts of his 
palace, and was therefore a violation of the law of nations. The Direc- 
tory declared war against Rome with a promptness that showed how 
eage-rly they had sought the quarrel, and Berthier received orders to 
advance instantly upon the Ecclesiastical dominions. That general, at 
the head of eighteen thousand veterans, entered Ancona on the 25th of 
January, 1798, where he completed a revolution that had broken out a 
few days before, secured its fortress, crossed the Appenines, and on the 
10th of February, appeared in front of the Eternal City. The pope, 
(Pius VI.,) who was now more than eighty years of age, shut himself up 
in the Vatican, and spent night and day at the foot of the altar, imploring 
protection from Heaven. Berthier might easily have taken possession 
of Rome at once, but he preferred to avail himself of the sorry pretext 
of resorting to that step only when the inhabitants invoked his aid ; and 
he encamped without the walls for five days, while the revolutionists 
within were completing their preparations. On the 15th of February, 
all was arranged: the revolutionists, in open revolt, passed through the 
streets, invited the French to enter, and Berthier hoisted the flag of the 
Republic over the walls of Rome. 

But the Directory did not stop at the mere conquest of the city. They 
ordered the pope to retire into Tuscany, dismiss his Swiss guard, supply 
their place with French soldiers, and dispossess himself of his temporal 
authority. He replied with the firmness of a martyr: "I am prepared 
for every kind of disgrace ; but as supreme pontiff, I am resolved to die 
in the exercise of all my powers. You may employ force ; you may 
become masters of my body, but not of my soul. Free in the "egioc 

1798.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 109 

where it is placed, it fears neither the events nor the sufferings of this 
life. I stand on the threshold of another world, where T shall soon be 
sheltered from the violence and impiety of this." Force was, neverthe- 
less, employed by the French. The aged pontiff was dragged from the 
altar in his palace, his repositories were plundered, the very rings torn 
from his fingers, and he himself, with only a few domestics for attendants, 
was conveyed into Tuscany, amid the brutal jests and sacrilegious songs 
of the French dragoons. The subsequent treatment of this venerable 
man was still more disgraceful to the Republic, Fearful that his virtues 
and sufferings might produce an influence in Italy unfavorable to the 
interests of France, the Directory ordered him to be removed to Leghorn, 
in March, 1799. After remaining there for a time, he was compelled to 
renew his journey, was conveyed across the Appenines and the Alps, 
exposed, by travelling at night, to the cold of those elevated regions; 
and he at length reached Valence, where he expired on the 29th of 
August, in the eighty-second year of his age and the twenty- fourth of his 

But long before the pope sunk under the persecution of his oppressors, 
Rome experienced the bitter fruits of republican fraternization. Imme- 
diately on the entrance of the French troops into the city, a systematic 
pillage was commenced that surpassed any to which Rome had previously 
been subjected : treasures of art which had survived the Gothic fire and 
the rapacity of Spanish soldiers in a past age, were now borne off; and 
although the bloodshed was much less, the spoil collected was incom- 
parably greater than at the disastrous sack of Rome which followed the 
death of the Constable de Bourbon. The work of revolution now pro- 
ceeded rapidly in the Roman states. All the ancient institutions were 
subverted ; the executive was made to consist of five consuls, after the 
model of the French Directory; heavy contributions and forced loans 
were exacted from the wealthier classes; the legislative power was 
vested in two Chambers chosen by the lowest ranks, and the state was 
divided into eight departments. 

While the Roman states were thus undergoing fusion in the revolu- 
tionary crucible, the Constitution of the Cis-Alpine Republic disappeared 
as rapidly as it had been formed. The endless exactions and impositions 
of the Directory soon exhausted the resources of that country, and forced 
the inhabitants, in self-defence, to organize a conspiracy for throwing off 
the French yoke. This plan was discovered, the existing Constitution 
dissolved, and a new one established under the dictation of the French 
ambassador, in which no attention was paid to the liberties or wishes of 
the people. 

The King of Sardinia was at this time enduring the last acts of humil- 
iation from the hands of his merciless allies. The peace which this 
monarch had early concluded with their victorious general, the fidelity 
with which he had discharged his engagements, and the firm support, that 
the possession of his fortresses had given to the French troops, could r.ct 
save him from spoliation. Since his opening the gates of Italy to France 
by the cession of the Piedmontese fortresses, his life had been a continual 
scene of mortification and disappointment. His territories were traversed 
in every direction by French columns, of whose approach he received no 
notice, except a statement of the supplies they required, and these he was 
compelled to furnish gratuitously. He was forced to banish all emi- 


grants from his dominions, and oppress his subjects by enormous contri- 
butions for the use of his insatiable allies ; and, at the same time, his 
provinces were filled with revolutionary clubs, openly patronized by the 
French ambassador, where the dismemberment of his government was 
daily proposed. In due time, the revolutionists made their demonstration 
by assembling in a body, eight thousand strong, in the district of Carrioso. 
The king's troops defeated them in two successive engagements ; but 
here the Directory interfered ; and, on the ground of an alleged conspi- 
racy in Piedmont, pretended to have been organized by the king for the 
massacre of the French troops, they insisted on his surrendering to them 
the invaluable fortress of Turin. He was forced to submit, and thus 
divested himself of the last means of resistance. His guards were now 
dismissed, and French soldiers attended him on all occasions, who, under 
the semblance of respect, kept him a prisoner in his own palace. The 
government was then remodeled ; French officers were appointed to 
conduct it ; the arsenals, the treasury, and all remaining fortresses were 
seized ; and, finally, the king was constrained to abdicate his continental 
authority, and take refuge in the island of Sardinia. 

The French intriguers were next occupied with the affairs of Naples, 
where, since the occupation of Rome by Berthier, extensive military 
preparations had been made for the protection of the government. The 
revolutionary party had already widely disseminated their principles, and 
excited both the alarm and indignation of the king, when news was 
received of the total destruction of the French fleet at the battle of the 
Nile. No words can describe the joy to which this event gave rise in 
Naples ; and on the arrival of Nelson at that port with his victorious 
fleet, the enthusiasm of the inhabitants was unbounded. The English 
admiral was received with more than regal honors ; the king and queen 
went out to meet him in the bay, and the shores were thronged by the 
ardent population of the capital, who rent the air with reiterated accla- 
mations. The general exultation at this period raised the courage of the 
Neapolitans to rashness ; and although they took the precaution of nego- 
tiating with Austria for support, and entered into a treaty for that pur- 
pose, they could not be induced to wait for the cooperation of the Emperor 
before they commenced hostilities. The Aulic Council, indeed, sent 
General Mack to command the Neapolitan forces ; but this proceeding, 
however well intended, was of incalculable injury to the cause, for 
Mack's deplorable ignorance and incapacity, served only to precipitate 
the ruin of the king. 

The Directory, in the belief that Naples wouM not venture to take the 
field, until the Austrian forces were ready to support them, had as yet 
^iven no orders for concentrating their own troops, who were scattered 
about over the Roman states in divisions of four or five thousand men : 
consequently, the first operations of Mack were successful, and Cham- 
pionnet, who commanded at Rome, was compelled to evacuate that city, 
and retire upon Terni. But the Neapolitan soldiers were so inefficient 
and ill-disciplined, that they fell into confusion from the mere fatigue of 
the march ; and, on their advancing beyond Rome to follow up their suc- 
cess, they were everywhere defeated, with the loss of prisoners, baggage 
and artillery. In one instance, a body of four thousand men laid down 
their arms to a French detachment of three thousand five hundred, on an 
open field. Mack now speedily retreated with his scattered forces to the 


Neapolitan frontier, vigorously pursued by Championnet : within seven- 
teen days from the opening of the campaign, eighteen thousand French 
veterans had driven Ibefore them forty thousand Neapolitans, splendidly 
dressed and abundantly equipped, but destitute of the qualities which are 
requisite to success in war. 

The terror inspired by these disasters was such, that the court of 
Naples was conceived to be insecure in the capital ; and in the night of 
the iilst of December, the whole royal family withdrew on board of Nel- 
son's fleet, and embarked for Sicily, with their most valuable effects and 
a large sum in specie from the public treasury. The inhabitants were in 
great consternation when they learned, on the following morning, that 
the royal family and ministers had fled, leaving them to defend them- 
selves against the whole power of France. Nothing could be expected 
from citizens, when the leaders of the state thus deserted their posts ; and 
the revolutionary party, being now uncontrolled, openly took measures 
against the government, and prepared the way for the approaching army 
of invaders. 

Championnet, meanwhile, was entering the Neapolitan territories. He 
found Mack posted in a strong position behind the Volturnus : but the 
native troops were so dispirited, that they scarcely awaited the onset of 
the French before they retreated in every direction, and Championnet 
advanced almost without resistance toward Naples. At Capua, he met 
with a check that might have resulted to his injury, had Mack improved 
a momentary advantage ; but the latter general, having lost confidence in 
his troops, instead of striking a decisive blow, proposed an armistice ; 
agreeing to deliver up Capua, Acerra and Benevento to the French, and 
pay them two and a half million of francs within fifteen days. Champi- 
onnet thus escaped from a dilemma with all the fruits of a great victory, 
and moved on at once to Naples. 

The intelligence of this armistice reached the capital before the French 
army arrived there, and it excited the utmost indignation among the 
lazzaroni. These men flew to arms with great unanimity, and deter- 
mined to resist both the payment of the subsidy, and the entrance of the 
invading forces. They drew the artillery from the arsenal, threw up 
intrenchments on the heights commanding the approaches to the city, and 
barricaded the principal streets. For three days, commencing on the 
21st of January, 1799, a dreadful combat raged around the walls. The 
French veterans came on, column after column, with the most desperate 
bravery, but they were met with equal resolution by the defenders of the 
town, and no material advantage had yet been gained by either party, 
when, during an assault on one of the gates, Michel le Fou, the lazzaroni 
leader, was made prisoner. He was conducted to the head-quarters of 
the French general, where, being kindly treated, he offered to mediate 
between the contending parties. This at once terminated the combat. 
The French took possession of the city, disarmed the lazzaroni, appointed 
a provisional government of twenty-one members, and styled the new 
democratic state the Parthenopeian Republic. 

Ireland was doomed next to experience the turmoil of revolutionary ex- 
plosion. All the horrors of the Reign of Terror had failed to open the eyes 
of the Irish people to the real tendency of French reform; nor could the 
experience of other European states which had sought the aid of France 
in establishing democratic governments within their dominions, teach tho 


inhabitants of Ireland the danger of intriguing with the emissaries of the 
Directory. The greater part of the Catholics who constituted three- 
fourths of the inhabitants leagued themselves together for establishing 
a Republic in alliance with France ; for the severance of all connection 
with England, the restoration of the Catholic religion, and the reclaiming 
of lands confiscated by the British government during the various rebel- 
lions that had taken place in Ireland in the two preceding centuries. 

The system on which this immense insurrection was organized > was 
one of the most simple and efficacious that ever was devised. Persons 
in every part of Ireland were sworn into an association, called the Society 
of United Irishmen, the real objects of which were kept a profound secret, 
while the ostensible ones were best calculated to allure the populace. 
Each meeting was represented by five persons in a committee, vested 
with the management of all affairs. From every committee, a deputy 
attended a superior body; one or two deputies from these composed a 
county committee ; two from every county committee, a provincial com- 
mittee ; and this last body elected by ballot five persons to superintend 
the whole business of the Union : the names of the five thus appointed 
were communicated only to the secretaries of the provincial committees, 
who were officially intrusted with the canvassing of the votes. Thus, 
though their power was unlimited, their agency was invisible, and some 
hundred thousands of men obeyed the dictates of an unknown authority. 
Liberation from tithes and dues to the Protestant clergy, and the restora- 
tion of the Roman Catholic faith, were the principal inducements held out 
to the lower classes; while Parliamentary reform was the ostensible 
motive submitted to the country at large, that being best calculated to 
conceal the ultimate design, and enlist in the cause the greater number 
of the respectable classes. 

To resist this formidable combination, another society, composed of 
those attached to the British government and Protestant ascendency, was 
formed with the title of Orangemen. The same vehement zeal and 
ardent passion which have always distinguished the Irish character, 
marked the efforts of the rival parties, and the feuds between them became 
universal. Deeds of depredation, rapine and murder filled the land; and 
it was sometimes hard to say whether the most violent acts were perpe- 
trated by the open enemies of the law, or by its unruly defenders. 

The British government, meantime, were not at all aware of the 
extent of the danger. They had received only some vague information 
of the existence of a seditious confederacy, at the moment when the insur- 
rection was on the point of breaking out. But at this juncture, the de- 
struction of the Dutch fleet off Camperdown having deprived the insurgents 
of the expected aid from France, by destroying the means of transporting 
the French troops, the malcontents became desperate and commenced the 
rebellion without any concentrated action. They maintained, therefore, 
a Vendean system of warfare in the southern counties, and compelled all 
the respectable inhabitants to fly to the towns for safety from massacre 
and conflagration. These disorders were soon repressed, and with great 
severity, by the British regular troops, aided by forty thousand yeomanry 
of the country : but the excesses of the government forces, inseparable 
from this sort of strife, excited the deepest feeling of revenge in the furious 
and undisciplined multitude. 

On the 19th of February, 1798, Lord Moira made an eloquent speech 

1798.5 HISTORY OF EUROPE. 113 

m the British Parliament in favor of the insurgents ; but the period for 
accommodation was past. On the same day, the Irish committees came 
to a formal resolution to regard no offers from either house of Parliamert, 
and agree to no terms but a total separation from Great Britain. Although 
the designs of the insurgents were now revealed, the names of the leaders 
were unknown, till at length, one of the chiefs having betrayed this in- 
formation, fourteen of the principal individuals were arrested at Dublin. 
The conspirators were thus deprived of their most respectable and intelli- 
gent leaders ; but the rebellion nevertheless broke out in different parts 
of Ireland, on the 23rd of May. A great number of isolated combats 
took place, and two or three pitched battles occurred, between the rebels 
and the regular troops, which were accompanied and followed by a thou- 
sand acts of ferocious cruelty ; but in the event, the discipline and skill 
of the government soldiers prevailed, and by the end of July the insurgents 
were entirely subdued, excepting a few scattered bands in the mountains 
of Wicklow and Wexford. 

So unbounded was the arrogance, and so reckless the policy, of the 
French government at this time, they nearly involved themselves in a 
war with the United States of North America ; a country where demo- 
cratic institutions prevailed to the greatest extent, and where gratitude to 
France was unbounded for services rendered during the American war 
with Great Britain. 

The origin of the difficulty was a decree of the Directory, issued in 
January, 1798, ordering that all ships having for their cargoes, in whole 
or in part, English merchandise, should be lawful prize, whoever was the 
proprietor of such merchandise, which should be held contraband from 
the single fact of its coming from England or from any of its colonies ; 
that the harbors of France should be shut against all vessels which had 
so much as touched at an English harbor, and that neutral sailors found 
on board of English vessels should be put to death. This barbarous 
decree immediately brought France into collision with the United States, 
as the ships of the latter country were at that period the great neutral 
carriers of the world. Letters of marque were issued by the Directory, 
and an immense number of American vessels which had touched at Eng- 
lish ports, were brought into France. The American government sent 
envoys to Paris to remonstrate against these proceedings: they were 
however denied an audience with the Directory, but permitted to remain 
in Paris, and addressed by Talleyrand and his inferior agents. It was 
then intimated to the envoys that the intention of the Directory when re- 
fusing to receive them in a public, and yet permitting them to remain in 
a private capacity, was to lay the United States under a contribution of 
five millions of dollars as a loan to the French government, and two hun- 
dred and fifty thousand dollars for the private use of the Directors. This 
disgraceful proposal was urged on the envoys, not only by the subaltern 
agents, but by Talleyrand himself, who openly avowed that nothing could 
be done at Paris without money. These terms were indignantly rejected ; 
the envoys left Paris ; letters of marque were issued by the American 
President ; all commercial intercourse with France was suspended ; 
Washington was appointed generalissimo of the forces of the United States ; 
the treaties with France were declared to be at an end ; and every pre- 
paration was made to sustain the national independence. 

The Hanse Towns were not fortunate enough to escape the exactions 


of the Directory. Their distance from the scene of contest ; their neu- 
trality, so favorable to the commerce of the Republic; the protection 
openly afforded them by Prussia, could not save them from French rapa- 
city. Their ships, bearing a neutral flag, were daily captured by the 
French cruisers ; and they at length purchased a license to navigate the 
high seas by secretly paying near four millions of francs to the Repub- 
lican rulers. 

So long as the European states retained the slightest hope of maintaining 
their independence, these incessant usurpations of the French government 
could not fail to bring about a renewal of the war. France had made 
more rapid strides toward universal dominion during one year of pacific 
encroachment, than in the six preceding years of hostility. The continu 
ance of amicable relations was favorable to the secret propagation of the 
revolutionary mania; and, without the shock of war, the independence of 
the nations was silently melting away before the insidious but incessant 
efforts of democratic ambition. These considerations, strongly excited 
by the infamous subjugation of Switzerland and of the Papal States, led 
to a general feeling throughout all the European monarchies of the ne- 
cessity of a coalition to resist the farther encroachments of France. The 
Emperor of Russia evinced his readiness to join in such a confederacy ; 
while the Emperor of Austria, meeting numberless difficulties in adjusting 
with the French government the details of the treaty of Campo Formio, 
virtually dissolved that compact by certain military preparations, which 
were considered equivalent to a declaration of war against France. 



ALTHOUGH Austria was, to outward appearance, at peace with France 
after the armistice of Leoben, she had been indefatigable in her exertions, 
since that event, to prepare for a renewal of the war. Her army was 
raised to two hundred and forty thousand men, supported by an immense 
train of artillery, all admirably equipped and ready to take the field. 

The Emperor of' Russia embarked warmly in the cause, and ordered 
a Muscovite army of sixty thousand men to begin its march from Poland 
toward the north of Italy ; he also concluded a treaty of alliance, offen- 
sive and defensive, with Great Britain, engaging to furnish an auxiliary 
force of forty-five thousand men, to act in conjunction with the British 
forces in the north of Germany ; and England, on her part, agreed to 
advance two hundred and twenty-five thousand pounds sterling to the 
Emperor, and pay, besides, a monthly subsidy of seventy-five thousand 
pounds. Paul at the same time gave an asylum to Louis XVIII. in the 
capital of Courland, and entertained with munificence the French emi- 
grants who sought refuge in his dominions. But all his efforts failed to 
induce Prussia to swerve from her neutrality : she stood by as an uncon- 
cerned spectator of a strife in which her own independence was at stake, 
when her army, now two hundred and twenty 'housand strong, might have 

1799.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 115 

interfered with decisive effect. She was rewarded for her forbearance by 
the battle of Jena. 

Great Britain also exerted herself for the approaching contest. To 
meet the increased expenses which the treaty with Russia and the prose- 
cution of the war were likely to occasion, Mr. Pitt proposed a tax hitherto 
unknown in Britain, and now designated the Income Tax. It was thus 
graduated : all incomes of less than sixty pounds a year were exempt from 
the impost ; those of less than one hundred and five pounds paid a tax of 
two and a half per cent. ; and those over two hundred pounds, ten per cent. 
The intention of this tax was to require from each person a contribution 
to the wants of the state in exact proportion to his ability ; an admirable 
theory, and, if carried fully into effect, would have gone far toward re- 
lieving the financial embarrassments consequent on the war. The land 
forces of Great Britain were this year raised to one hundred and thirty- 
eight thousand men, the sea force to one hundred and twenty thousand, 
and one hundred and twenty thousand were embodied in the militia. 

The forces of the Republic were greatly inferior to those of the allies 
at the opening of the campaign. Their numbers were reduced by dis- 
charges and desertions to an unprecedented extent ; their choicest troops 
were exiled in Egypt ; and the officers of the armies in the conquered 
provinces, were so much more intent on political intrigues and rapine than 
on the proper discipline and regulation of the soldiers, that their effective 
strength was much impaired. Nevertheless, the French commenced hos- 
tilities in the Grisons with considerable success ; and in a series of actions 
in this quarter, during the month of March, made themselves masters of 
the upper extremity of the two great valleys of the Tyrol, the Inn and the 
Adige. Massena and Oudinot then advanced to Feldkirch, a fortress 
situated on a rocky eminence and commanding the principal passage from 
the Vorarlberg into the Tyrol : but here they met with a serious repulse, 
and retreated with the loss of three thousand men. 

In the mean time, Jourdan opened the campaign on the Rhine, which 
river he crossed at Kehl, and marched thence toward the Black Forest ; 
but learning that the Archduke was approaching with superior forces, he 
moved to a strong position between the Lake of Constance and the Danube.. 
The Austrians commenced the attack on the advanced guard of the Re- 
publicans at Ostrach, and were for a time bravely resisted ; but at length 
the French left wing, under St. Cyr, having been outflanked at Mengen, 
Jourdan was forced to retreat with his whole army to Stockach. At this 
place, all the roads to Swabia, Switzerland and the valley of the Neckar 
unite, and Jourdan here made a stand, because by further retreat he would 
have abandoned his communications with Massena and the Grisons. The 
Archduke followed closely the retiring columns of the French, and was 
making his dispositions to attack, when Jourdan resolved to anticipate him 
in that movement. At five o'clock in the morning, on the 26th of March, 
all the French columns were in order of battle, and the left wing, under 
St. Cyr and Soult, was soon engaged with the Austrian right at Liptingen. 
This attack, after an obstinate resistance on the part of the Austrians, was 
successful ; and as their right was turned, the victory seemed to be decided 
in favor of the French. But the Archduke hastened to the scene of danger 
with twelve squadrons of cuirassiers and six battalions of grenadiers, who 
soon changed the fortune of the day. The battle now raged along the 
whole line, each party contesting its ground with the greatest bravery ; 


but the Austrians at length succeeded in cutting off the French left wing 
so entirely from the main body, that St. Cyr was forced to retreat across 
the Danube, and trust to his own resources for escape in a hostile country. 
The French centre and right had hitherto maintained their position ; but 
after St. Cyr's discomfiture, they fell back toward the Black Forest. 
Jourdan was so much disconcerted by the result of this action, that, after 
reaching the defiles of the Forest, he surrendered the command of the 
army temporarily to Ernouf, chief of the staff, and set out for Paris to 
inform the Directory of the condition of the troops. 

The Austrians had now an opportunity to overwhelm the French army 
on its retreat, and the Archduke burned with impatience to crush the 
invaders by a decisive blow ; but he was restrained by the injudicious 
measures of the Aulic Council, who forbade his advance toward the Rhine 
until Switzerland was cleared of the enemy. He was therefore compelled 
to put his army into cantonments between Engen and Wahlweis, and the 
French leisurely effected their retreat through the Black Forest. 

While these operations were in progress north of the Alps, events 
equally important were taking place in Italy, where Scherer had been 
placed in command of the French army. This officer had gained some 
distinction in the Alps and Pyrenees, in the campaign of 1795, but he 
was unknown to the Italian army, and possessed the confidence neither 
of his officers nor soldiers. His first movement was upon the Austrian 
camp at Pastrengo, where his left wing and centre were victorious, but 
his right suffered so severely from the Austrians under General Kray, 
that the advantages of the battle were nearly divided between the two 
armies. This occurred on the 26th of March. On the 30th, Scherer 
resolved to attempt the passage of the Adige and push on to Verona ; and 
he ordered Serrurier with seven thousand men to cross at Polo, which 
that general accordingly did, and advanced boldly on the high road lead- 
ing to Trent : but he was attacked by Kray, and defeated with a loss in 
killed and prisoners of nearly three thousand men. Notwithstanding this 
check, Scherer persisted in his design on Verona, and concentrated his 
army near Magnano, where Kray attacked him on the 5th of April. The 
French forces amounted to forty-one thousand men, and the Austrians to 
forty-five thousand. For several hours victory inclined to the Republican 
standard, and the Imperialists were gradually losing ground, when Kray 
brought up a large reserve of artillery and cavalry, who soon drove the 
French from the field. Scherer retreated behind the Tartaro, carrying 
with him two thousand prisoners and several pieces of cannon taken early 
in the action ; but his own loss was four thousand killed and wounded, 
four thousand prisoners, seven standards, eight pieces of cannon and forty 
caissons, which fell into the hands of the Imperialists. 

The Republicans were thrown into the deepest dejection by this defeat : 
they retired on the day following behind the Mincio; and Scherer, not 
feeling himself in security even there, continued his retreat across the 
Oglio and the Adda. This retrograde movement was performed in such 
haste and confusion that the troops loudly complained of their commander's 
incapacity, and demanded his removal. Their discontent, and that of all 
France, was further augmented by intelligence of the capitulation of 
Corfu, which surrendered to the combined forces of Turkey and Russia 
on the 3rd of March. 

Massena, who after Jourdan's withdrawal was intrusted with the com. 


mand of the French forces both on the Rhine and in the Alps, now found 
himself under the necessity of taking a defensive position in the Grisons, 
as the defeat of the army of Italy threatened to bring Kray's victorious 
divisions on his flank. He therefore intrenched himself on the line of the 
Limmat and Linth, and established his head-quarters at Zurich. 

The Archduke resumed the offensive by a general attack on Massena's 
whole line, on the 14th of May, which was so far successful that Massena, 
after sustaining a loss of near five thousand men in prisoners alone, was 
forced to retreat from the Grisons and collect his whole force around 
Zurich. The Austrian loss in this movement was only seventy-one men; 
an extraordinary but well- authenticated proof of the advantage of offensive 
operations in mountain warfare, and of the great disasters to which the 
best troops are subjected by being exposed, when acting on the defensive, 
to the loss of their communications by having their positions turned. 

Encouraged by this success, and by the near approach of the Russian 
army, the Archduke issued a proclamation exhorting the Swiss to take up 
arms against their oppressors and cooperate with him in driving them to 
their own frontier. At the same time, he ordered a concentration of all 
his forces, and prepared for a vigorous attack on Massena. The latter 
general, anxious to prevent a junction between Hotze and the Archduke, 
left his intrenchments and attacked the Imperialists' advanced guard at 
Stein. An indecisive action ensued, which, though resulting in favor of 
the French, did not prevent the junction of the Austrian forces ; and the 
following day, the Archduke retaliated on the French columns and drove* 
them back to their intrenchments. This repulse of the French centre was 
followed by a defeat of their right wing under Lecourbe ; who, being as- 
sailed by a detachment of ten thousand men from Suwarrow's army, was 
forced to abandon the heights of St. Gothard. The Archduke now resolved 
to attack Massena in his almost impregnable position at Zurich ; and, hav- 
ing drawn together the principal part of his forces, pushed them forward 
to the French lines on the 5th of June. A desperate battle took place, 
but Massena maintained his ground against the utmost impetuosity of the 
Austrian assault, and the Archduke was at length compelled to retire with 
a loss of three thousand men. He was not, however, discouraged by this 
failure ; and after one day's repose, made his dispositions to renew the 
attack : but Massena, apprehensive of the result, retreated during the night 
to Mount Albis, leaving behind him one hundred and fifty pieces of can- 
non and an immense quantity of warlike stores. 

A few' days after the battle of Magnano, Suwarrow, with his Russian 
veterans, joined the Austrian army, which was still encamped on the banks 
of the Mincio ; and the command of the whole devolved on the Russian 
field-marshal. Suwarrow's favorite weapon was the bayonet ; his system 
of war, incessant and vigorous attack ; and the temper of hn mind, as well 
as the general character of his tactics, was aptly illustrated by his first 
order to General Chastelar, chief of the Austrian staff. That officer having 
proposed to reconnoitre the French position, Suwarrow answered hastily : 
" Reconnoitre ! that does not belong to my system : it is of no use but to 
the timid, and to inform the enemy that you are coming. It is never dif- 
ficult to find your opponents when you really wish to find them. No ! 
Form column; charge bayonet; plunge into the centre of the enemy that 
is my way to reconnoitre !" 

Moreau, who had superseded Scherer in the command of the French 


army, finding his forces reduced by sickness and the sword to twenty-eight 
thousand combatants, retired toward Milan, leaving a large quantity of 
military stores and reserved artillery parks at Cremona, to the allies. 
Suwarrow detached twenty thousand men under Kray to besiege Peschiera 
and blockade Mantua, while he, with the main body of his troops, pursued 
the retreating army of Moreau. On the 25th of April, he reached the 
Adda, and prepared to force a passage across it. Moreau made his dis- 
positions to oppose the passage at what he conceived to be the most exposed 
part of the river ; but while his attention was occupied with the allied 
centre, a detachment of Austrians under General Ott succeeded in con- 
structing a bridge during the night at Trezzo, and passed over the whole 
right wing, while Wukassowich surprised the passage at Brivio. These 
movements were decisive. Grenier's division was driven toward Milan 
with a loss of two thousand five hundred men, and Serrurier, being isolated 
by Wukassowich, and at length entirely surrounded by the allies, was 
forced to surrender with his whole corps, seven thousand strong. Su- 
warrow pressed forward to Milan, and made a triumphal entry there on 
the 29th of April ; while Moreau, having left three thousand men to gar- 
rison the citadel of Milan, evacuated the town, divided the remnant of his 
army into two columns, marched with one to Turin, and dispatched the 
other, under Victor and Laboissiere, toward Alexandria, to occupy the 
approaches to Genoa. 

Suwarrow was now master of all the plains of Lombardy, and at the 
head of an overwhelming force ; but he did not evince that activity in fol- 
lowing up his adversary which might have been expected from the general 
vigor of his character. In the mean time, Kray was gaining ground in the 
rear. Orci, Novi, Peschiera and Pizzighitone surrendered to his arms, 
with a hundred pieces of cannon, twenty gun-boats, a siege equipage and 
immense stores of ammunition and provisions ; which acquisitions enabled 
him to draw closer the blockade of Mantua. 

At length, after giving himself up to the festivities of Milan for more 
than a week, Suwarrow left four thousand men to blockade the citadel of 
that town, and set out for Alexandria. On the night of the llth of May, 
one of his divisions, under Rosenberg, was defeated in an attempt to cross 
the Po ; and on the day following, an action took place between his ad- 
vanced guard under Bagrathion and the French division of Victor, near 
Alexandria ; when the Republicans, after an obstinate defence, were 
forced to retreat under shelter of the cannon of Alexandria. Moreau now 
ordered Victor to retire to Genoa, while he himself retreated to Turin ; 
whither Suwarrow eagerly pursued him. On the 27th of May, Wukas- 
sowich, with the Russian advanced guard, having by the assistance of the 
inhabitants surprised one of the gates, the allies-forced their way into the 
town and the French retreated to the citadel, leaving in the hands of the 
victors two hundred and sixty-one pieces of cannon, eighty mortars, sixty 
thousand muskets, and all the ammunition and stores which had been ac. 
cumulating there since the first occupation of Italy by Napoleon. On the 
same day, Suwarrow received intelligence of the surrender of the citadel 
of Milan ; an event which enabled the besieging force of that fortress to 
join with the army before Mantua, and the artillery was dispatched to 
Tortona, which place was now closely invested. After the capture of 
Turin, Moreau's position became nearly desperate ; but by constructing, 
with herculean labor, a practicable road across the Appenines, he at length 

1799.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 119 

made good his retreat to Loano, where he effected a junction with Victor's 
troops. Thus, in less than three months from the opening of the campaign 
on the Adige, the French standards were driven to the summit of the 
Alps ; the whole plain of Lornbardy, excepting a few of its fortresses, was 
regained ; and the conquests of Napoleon were lost to France in less time 
than he had taken to achieve them. 

The affairs of Naples began to attract attention while these events were 
yet in progress. The exactions of the Directory, the desecration of the 
churches, and the abolition of religious festivals, had of late excited in the 
inhabitants of that kingdom the most lively indignation and horror, and 
insurrections were the immediate consequence. At this juncture, Mac- 
donald, who was in command of the Republican troops at Naples, received 
orders, on the 7th of May, to evacuate the South of Italy and hasten to 
the support of Moreau, in Lombardy. He therefore assembled all his 
disposable forces, and set off for Rome at the head of twenty thousand men ; 
and although his movement was a signal for a general rising on the part 
of the Neapolitans, and his march was harassed by their attacks at every 
step, he reached that city on the 16th, and advanced as far as Lucca by 
the end of the month, without serious loss. 

Macdonald was now in full communication with Moreau, and as their 
united forces amounted to thirty-seven thousand effective troops, they de- 
termined to resume the offensive, relieve Mantua and Tortona in the first 
instance, and afterward compel the allies to evacuate Lombardy. The. 
allied troops at this moment in Italy exceeded a hundred thousand men, 
but they were dispersed over a large surface, and not more than eight-and- 
twenty thousand were assembled at any one point ; so that the project of 
the Republican generals was not without promise of success. Macdonald 
therefore pushed on to Modena, where Hohenzollern, with five thousand 
Austrians, was in command, and quickly defeated him with a loss of fifteen 
hundred men. The French general hastened thence to Parma, where 
Ott was stationed with six thousand troops : and he, too, was compelled to 
make a precipitate retreat. 

The moment that Suwarrow heard of Macdonald's advance, he prepared 
to meet him with an energy befitting the emergency ; and by his great 
exertions and the promptness with which his plans of combination were 
carried out, no less than thirty-six thousand troops were assembled at 
Garofalo on the 15th of June. Macdonald nevertheless pressed forward, 
not knowing the amount of the allied forces, and on the 17th crossed the 
Trebbia and attacked the advanced guard of the Imperialists. This corps 
was soon driven back and pursued until the columns of the main body, 
under Suwarrow, came up, when the French in turn gave ground. Vic- 
tor brought up his division to protect the retreat of the Republicans, who 
retired in good order until the Cossacks charged them in flank ; when, in 
spite of the discipline of the troops and the coolness with which they threw 
themselves into squares to resist the onset of these children of the desert, 
the French ranks were broken and a great part of their division cut to 
pieces. A column of allies pursued the fugitives across the Trebbia, but 
they were repulsed by the French main body ; and here, for the day, the 
combat terminated. The hostile armies bivouacked that night on the same 
ground which, nineteen hundred years before, was occupied by Hannibal 
and the Roman legions. The battle was renewed at six o'clock the fol- 
lowing morning between the troops of Bagrathion and the French left under 



Victor, who contested the ground through the whole day, at the close of 
which Victor was driven back with great slaughter. In the course of the 
day, the action became general, but the result was at all points the same. 
The French retired with loss to their former ground, and again the Trebbia 
formed the line of separation between the two armies for the night. On 
the 19th of June, the sun rose for the third time on this scene of slaughter ; 
and at ten o'clock the whole French army, divided into two lines presented 
itself on the opposite side of the river. Suwarrow gave the order to attack ; 
but at the same moment, he saw the first French line advance and throw 
themselves into the stream. Suwarrow awaited their approach ; and, 
after a murderous strife, the Republicans were overwhelmed and driven 
back across the river with great loss. At this moment, Prince Lich- 
tenstein charged the second line, that had advanced to support the first, 
and again the steady valor of the allies prevailed. The French were 
driven back, and the battle was at an end. The total loss on each side about twelve thousand men killed and wounded, but the victoiy re- 
mained with the allies, as they had constantly defeated the French advance 
and finally retained possession of the field. Macdonald retreated toward 
the Appenines during the night of the 19th of June. 

Early in the morning of the 20th, a dispatch from Macdonald to Moreau 
was intercepted, designating the line of the French retreat ; whereupon, 
Suwarrow immediately pushed forward in pursuit. Victor's detachment 
in the rear was soon overtaken, broken, and the greater part made 
prisoners. The Austrian General Melas advanced to Placentia, where 
he made prisoners of the French wounded, five thousand in number, 
including four generals: and at length Macdonald, with a straggling 
remnant of his army, reached Parma, and proceeded thence slowly to 
Genoa ; while Suwarrow retraced his steps, to press with renewed vigor 
the blockade of Mantua and Tortona. He soon received intelligence of 
the fall of the citadel of Turin, the garrison of which capitulated, June 
20th, on condition of being sent back to France. This was a conquest 
of great importance, as it relieved the besieging force, and enabled it to 
join the main army, besides putting in possession of the allies one of the 
strongest fortresses in Piedmont, with six hundred and eighteen pieces 
of cannon, forty thousand muskets, and fifty thousand quintals of powder. 

Mutual exhaustion, and the intervening ridge of the Appenines, now 
compelled a cessation of hostilities for more than a month, during which 
time both parties were engaged in reorganizing their forces. 

The retreat of Macdonald from Naples, was immediately followed by 
the king's taking possession of his throne, and the deliverance of the 
Neapolitan dominions from the French yoke, which was accomplished 
with the assistance of the British and Russian fleets. The French gar- 
risons of the several fortresses that were forced to surrender, were sent 
home in conformity to the conditions of the capitulation; but the insurgent 
N apolitans, who acted with the French in accomplishing the Revolution, 
were handed over to a military commission, and executed without mercy. 
A part of these executions were wholly unjustifiable, the insurgents hav- 
ing, in some instances, been expressly included in the capitulations, and 
surrendered on condition of security to their persons and property. But 
on the arrival of the king and his court, on board Nelson's fleet, these 
conditions were annulled, as not having received the royal sanction, and 
Nelson himself concurred with the king in that outrageous decision. 


These victims, accordingly, suffered death with the rest ; and their blood 
has left an ineffaceable stain on the character of the British admiral and 
the Neapolitan sovereign. The fate of Prince Francis Carraccioli was 
equally conspicuous and deplorable. He had been one of the principal 
leaders of the Revolution, and, after the capitulation, retired to the 
mountains, where he was betrayed by a servant, and brought on board 
of Nelson's own ship. Here, a court-martial was summoned, and the 
old man was condemned, hung at the yard-arm, and thrown into the sea. 
The blockade of Mantua, which had been maintained with rigor during 
the cessation of hostilities, was now changed to a siege. Trenches were 
opened on the 14th of July; on the 24th, all the besiegers' batteries were 
brought to bear on the outworks, and the defences of the fortress rapidly 
sunk before the storm of two hundred pieces of heavy artillery. On the 
30th of July, the garrison, reduced to seven thousand five hundred men, 
surrendered on condition of being sent back to France and not serving 
again until regularly exchanged. The fortress of Alexandria had already 
surrendered to the allies under Count Bellegarde, and Suwarrow, on the 
2nd of August, concentrated his forces around Coni and commenced the 
siege of Tortona, which place at length capitulated on the llth of Sep- 
tember. In the mean time, however, the French army under Joubert, 
who had been appointed to supersede Moreau, advanced to raise the siege 
of the latter place. His movements showed that he was ill-qualified for 
the command he had assumed, as, in defiance of the advice of his officers, 
he unnecessarily exposed himself at Novi, in a disadvantageous position, 
and with forces inferior to the allies. He was not long in discovering 
his error, but it was too late to repair it, for Suwarrow hastened to attack 
him before he could retreat. The action was commenced by Kray, at 
five o'clock in the morning of the 15th of August; he directed his move- 
ment against the French right, and was followed by Bellegarde and Ott, 
who, severally, attacked the left and centre. The Republicans resisted 
this onset with great bravery, but the allies, nevertheless, were gaining 
upon them on the left, when Joubert, placing himself at the head of the 
wavering line, was struck down by a musket-ball, and expired, crying, 
" Forward, my brave fellows ! forward !" Moreau immediately took the 
command, and repaired the confusion that followed the death of Joubert. 
For four successive hours the French stood firm, resisting the reiterated 
attacks of the allies, and repelling them with a steady slaughter, that 
would have discouraged a less resolute commander than Suwarrow. At 
length, when the efforts of both armies were relaxing from fatigue, Melas 
was ordered to charge with the allied reserve on the French right. This 
attack decided the battle. The Republicans were speedily thrown into 
disorder by the onset of fresh troops ; and, although for a time Moreau 
kept his centre steady, to protect a retreat that became inevitable, the 
impetuous assaults of the allies soon converted the retrograde movement 
into a rout : infantry, cavalry and artillery disbanded and fled in tumult- 
uous confusion, and the scattered troops at length rallied at Gavi, only 
because the allies were too much exhausted to continue the pursuit. 
The loss of the allies in this action was seven thousand killed and 
wounded, and twelve hundred prisoners; and that of the French, seven 
thousand killed and wounded, three thousand prisoners, thirty-seven 
pieces of cannon, twenty-eight caissons and four standards. After the 
battle, Suwarrow, in obedience to his orders, detached Kray to the Tessino 


with twelve thousand men ; and, on the surrender of Tortona, himself 
followed the same route with seventeen thousand ; while Moreau retired 
into the fastnesses of the Appenines. 

When Zurich surrendered and Massena retreated to Mount Albis, the 
Archduke established the greater part of his forces on the hills which 
separate the Glatt from the Limmat, and placed a line of posts along that 
river and the Aar, to observe the movements of the Republicans. Each 
of the opposing armies in Switzerland numbered about seventy-five thou- 
sand combatants, and both were waiting for reinforcements ; but, as the 
auxiliaries expected by the Archduke under Korsakow were much the 
more important in strength, Massena resolved to assume the offensive 
before that officer could arrive. At the time that the French commander 
was making preparations for this purpose, the Aulic Council gave him 
every facility for success, by insanely ordering the Archduke to depart 
with hid veterans for the Rhine ; leaving his position to be occupied by 
Korsakow'g Russians, who were yet unskilled in mountain warfare and 
unacquainted with French tactics. It was in vain that the Archduke 
remonstrated against the ruinous policy of this division of forces : he was 
eut short by the court of Vienna with the direction to " execute their will, 
without further objections." 

The result of these movements was what might have been anticipated. 
Massena's troops commenced their march on the 14th of August, and 
made a simultaneous attack on several points of the allied position, in 
every one of which they were successful. The centre was forced back 
almost to Zurich ; the Swiss and Imperialists were expelled from Schwytz ; 
the elevated and important post of Wasen was taken ; the Grimsel and 
the Furca were evacuated: in short, the whole left wing of the allies 
was routed in less than forty-eight hours, with the loss of ten pieces of 
cannon, four thousand prisoners, two thousand killed and wounded, and 
St., Gothard, with all its approaches and lateral valleys, was taken by 
the French. Korsakow now collected his forces around Zurich, and 
dispatched couriers to hasten the advance of Suwarrow, who was coming 
to his aid. Massena, however, resolved to follow up his success before 
the Russian field-marshal's arrival. On the 24th of September, he 
planned two attacks on Korsakow's position; one a feigned attack on 
Zurich in front, and while drawing the attention of the allies to this 
point, he purposed to cross the river with the bulk of his army farther 
down, where it was slightly defended, and, by turning the allied centre, 
make a simultaneous assault in both front and rear. This plan was 
executed with great precision and ability. While the Russian com- 
mander was steadily resisting the feigned attack in front, arid congratu- 
lating himself on an easy victory when he should move forward to secure 
it, he was alarmed, and presently his whole army was thrown into 
confusion, by the French demonstration in his rear. The approach of 
night terminated the contest for the moment, and Massena, fully aware 
of his advantage, summoned the Russian general to surrender: but 
Korsakow, who had formed the desperate resolution of cutting his way 
through the enemy's line, sent no answer to the proposal. 

At daybreak, on the 28th of Sept'r, the allies issued from their in- 
trenchments, and attacked the French divisions on the road to Winterthur. 
The French made an obstinate resistance ; but the allied troops, fighting 
with the courage of despair, were invincible, and Soon opened a passage 

1799.] HISTORY OF EUR OPE. 123 

for retreat. Unfortunately, Korsakow, in arranging his column had, in 
defiance alike of common sense and military rule, placed his infantry in 
front, his cavalry in the centre, and his artillery and equipages in the rear, 
He effected a retreat with the infantry and cavalry ; but his whole ar- 
tillery was lost, and Zurich, thus abandoned, speedily surrendered to 
the Republican arms. Korsakow's total loss was eight thousand killed 
and wounded, and five thousand prisoners. Soult, on the same day, made 
a successful attack on the right wing of the allies, under Hotze, in which 
the latter officer was slain, and his division driven across the Rhine, with 
a loss of three thousand prisoners and twenty pieces of cannon. 

Suwarrow, in the mean time, was pressing forward to the assistance of 
Korsakow. On the 21st of September, he arrived at the foot of the moun- 
tains, crested by St. Gothard, where General Gudin was strongly posted 
with four thousand Republican troops. The Russians pushed bravely up 
the steep zigzag ascent, but were arrested by the incessant fire of the 
sharp-shooters, who, posted behind rocks and trees, caused every shot to 
tell on the dense mass of their opponents, while, in return, the Russians 
could make no impression on the scattered and invisible enemy. Irritated 
by these obstacles, the old marshal advanced to the front of his column, 
laid himself down in a ditch, and declared his resolution "to be buried on 
the ground where his children had retreated for the first time." This 
appeal was irresistible. The Russians renewed their march, sustained 
the fire of the French without flinching, and carried the summit of St: 
Gothard at the point of the bayonet. Lecourbe, who was stationed beyond 
this pass with the French reserve, now found his position turned and had 
no alternative but a retreat. He therefore, during the night, threw his 
artillery into the Reuss, and retired down the valley of Schollenen, de- 
stroying the Devil's Bridge to secure his rear. Suwarrow followed close 
upon his steps, renewed the bridge under a storm of artillery and musketry, 
and formed a junction with Auffenberg at Wasen. When the Russian 
commander arrived at Altdorf, however, he learned the news of Korsa- 
kow's defeat ; and as, by Massena's advance, his own line of march was 
interrupted, he was forced to turn and attempt a junction with the Austrians 
by passing through the terrible defile of Shachenthal. No words can do 
justice to the difficulties and perils braved by the Russians in this retro- 
grade movement. They were compelled to abandon their artillery and 
baggage, and march in a single file up rocky paths, almost inaccessible 
to the chamois-hunter. The passage was at length achieved with great 
loss, and Suwarrow arrived at Mutten, where, in conformity to the plan 
of his march, he was to have met two Austrian corps. But the disasters 
of Korsakow had deranged all the combinations on this side of the 
Alps, and the brave Russian chief found himself in an isolated position, 
v/ithout artillery and baggage, and surrounded by an overwhelming force. 
He immediately called a council of war, and, following the dictates of his 
own impetuous courage, proposed to advance on Schwytz in the rear of 
the French position at Zurich : but this rash project was overruled by 
his more prudent officers, who at length, and with the utmost difficulty, 
persuaded the veteran conqueror to change his plans, and, for the firsl 
time in his life, to order a retreat. 

Preceded by the Austrian division of Aufifenberg, the Russians now 
ascended M6nt Bragel, driving before them the detachments of Molitor, 
who disputed every foot of ground, and finally took post at Naefels, where 



he resolutely withstood the Russian advance, and resisted all attempts to 
dislodge him. Suwarrow, being thus foiled, changed his line of retreat and 
moved toward the Grisons by Engi, Matt, and the valley of Sernst. This 
route offered difficulties even greater than were encountered in the defile 
of Shachenthal, for in addition to the ordinary perils of the way, a fall of 
snow had just obliterated all traces of the path over the mountains. No 
cottages were to be found in these dreary and sterile wastes ; not even trees 
were there to light up the cheerful fires of the bivouac : vast gray rocks, 
rising at intervals above the snow, alone broke the mournful uniformity of 
the scene ; and under their shelter, or on the open surface of the mountain, 
the soldiers were forced to lie down and pass a long autumnal night. But 
nothing could overcome the indomitable spirit of the Russians. They 
struggled on through hardships that would have daunted any other soldiers, 
and at length the straggling army was rallied in the valley of the Rhine, 
and head-quarters were established atllantz, on the 10th of October. 

In the mean time, Korsakow having reorganized his army, halted at 
Busingen, and turned successfully on his pursuers : and the Archduke, 
who since his joining the army of the Rhine had, by a brilliant coup de 
main, taken possession of Manheim, moved forward from that place to 
support the Russian corps. 

This succession of disasters at the close of a campaign that had opened 
so brilliantly, led to an unfortunate jealousy between the Anstrians and 
Russians. Each party laid on the other the blame of its defeats, and 
severe recriminations followed. While they were in this state of mind, 
Suwarrow proposed to the Archduke a renewal of offensive operations 
against the French lines, on the banks of the Thur ; to which the Arch- 
duke with reason objected, as an unnecessary exposure of their troops, but 
recommended a joint movement in Switzerland. The old marshal, irri- 
tated at the disapproval of his plan by a younger officer, and soured by 
his late discomfiture, replied in angry terms, that his troops were not 
adapted to any further operation in the mountains ; but that, on the con- 
trary, they needed repose. And he immediately moved them to winter- 
quarters in Bavaria. This event was, in due time, followed by a rupture 
between the cabinets of St. Petersburg and Vienna. 

On the 22nd of June, in this year, a special treaty was concluded between 
Great Britain and Russia, for the purpose of reestablishing the Stadtholder 
in Holland, and terminating the revolutionary tyranny under which that 
country had for some time groaned. Russia agreed to furnish seventeen 
thousand men for the expedition, and England, in addition to sending thir- 
teen thousand troops to act in conjunction with the Russians, was to pay 
forty-four thousand pounds sterling a month, for the support of their allies, 
and sustain the joint operation of these land forces, by the cooperation of 
her navy. The landing of the British troops on the coast of Holland, was 
accomplished on the 27th of August, under cover of the fire of the ships ; 
and Sir Ralph Abercromby, who commanded the army, immediately took 
possession of the fort of the Helder. The British squadron then entered 
the Texel and summoned the Dutch fleet, under Admiral Story, consist- 
ing of eight ships of the line, three of fifty-four guns, eight of forty-four 
and six smaller frigates. At sight of the British flag, symptoms of insub- 
ordination appeared among the Dutch sailors ; and the admiral, unable to 
escape, and despairing of assistance, surrendered without firing a shot. 

As the Russian troops had not yet arrived, the English commander 


remained on the defensive, and thus gave the Republicans time to assem- 
ble their forces, to the number of twenty-four thousand, including seven 
thousand French soldiers. General Brune was placed at the head of tins 
army, and he attacked the British position on the 10th of September : but, 
after a well contested action, he was repulsed wi'th a loss of two thousand 
men. Soon after this, the Russian contingent, seventeen thousand strong, 
and an English reenforcement of seven thousand joined the British army, 
and the Dux;e of York assumed the command. Being now in sufficient 
force to warrant offensive operations, the Duke resolved to attack the 
enemy. He moved forward for this purpose, on the 19th of September, 
commencing the action with the Russians on his right wing. These troops, 
however, advanced too rapidly, and fell into some disorder before they 
encountered their antagonists, who, receiving them with great steadiness, 
bore them back at the point of the bayonet. The English centre and left 
were more successful : they had gained on the enemy in every attack, and 
were beginning to feel assured of a complete victory, when the retreat of 
the Russian right wing left their flank uncovered, and forced them to fall 
back to their intrenchments. 

The Duke of York, not discouraged by this repulse, renewed his attack 
on the 2nd of October, at six o'clock in the morning. On this occasion, 
the Russians retrieved their late disgrace by an impetuous onset, which 
carried everything before them ; and, being well seconded by the British 
centre, the Republican position was speedily turned, and Brune retreated 
with a loss of three thousand men and seven pieces of cannon. 

Notwithstanding this victory, the allied army was in a precarious con- 
dition. The autumnal rains had set in with more than usual severity, 
the health of the soldiers began to be seriously affected, and they cculd 
look for no further reinforcements; while the enemy was gaining daily 
accessions of men, and preparing to resume the offensive with over- 
whelming numbers. Under these circumstances, it became necessary to 
capture some important town, where the allied troops could be comfort- 
ably quartered ; and after some deliberation, Haarlem was selected, as 
promising the most easy success. All arrangements being completed, 
the army marched toward that place on the 6th of October; but they were 
met by the Republican forces, and an indecisive action ensued which 
lasted through the whole day. The loss on each side was about two 
thousand men, in killed, wounded and prisoners, and the allied army 
retained possession of the field. But to them, an indecisive action was 
equivalent to a defeat: their object was Haarlem, and they had gained 
nothing but a battle-field. They were therefore forced to retreat to their 
intrenchments, where Brune followed them on the 8th; and, after in- 
vesting their position so that they had no hope of escape, he compelled 
them to capitulate on the 17th of October. By the conditions of the sur- 
render, the allies were to evacuate Holland within six weeks, restore 
eight thousand French or Dutch prisoners, and give up in good order the 
works of the Helder, with its artillery. These conditions were all 
fulfilled before the 1st of December; the British troops returned to Eng- 
land, arid the Russians went into winter-quarters in Jersey and Guernsey. 

After Suwarrovv withdrew from Italy, in September, the command of 
the Austrian forces devolved on Melas, who, in obedience to the direc- 
tions of the Aulic Council, concentrated his forces around Coni, and be- 
gan the siege of that last bulwark of the Republicans in the plain of 


Italy. Championnet, to whom the French forces were intrusted, attempted 
to raise the siege; and, for that purpose, made several partial attacks on 
the Austrian outposts, in which he gained considerable advantages. 
Emboldened by this result, he at length resolved on a general action; 
but he committed the capital error, in planning his movement, of dividing 
his army into three columns to attack on three sides an enemy in a cen- 
tral position: thus giving Melas an opportunity to engage any one of his 
divisions with greatly superior forces. The Austrian commander quickly 
seized the advantage thus offered; and, on the morning of November 
4th, greatly to the surprise of Championnet, who dreamed of nothing on 
the part of the Austrians but defensive operations, he impetuously as- 
sailed the division of Victor, sixteen thousand strong. The French 
troops bravely withstood the attack for a time, but, overpowered by num- 
bers, they at length gave way, and retreated with a loss of seven thousand 
men in killed, wounded and prisoners. Notwithstanding this destruction 
of his centre, and the consequent isolation of his two wings, Championnet 
made great efforts to relieve Coni: but the combinations of Melas were 
an overmatch for his diminished strength, and he was forced to abandon 
his project, and leave Coni to its fate. This stronghold was eventually 
surrendered on the 4th of December, and its garrison of three thousand 
men, with five hundred sick and wounded, were made prisoners of war. 

With two other events, the campaign in Italy was brought to a close: 
these were, the ^capture of the castle of St. Angelo by the Neapolitan 
forces, and of Ancona by the Russians. By the latter conquest, five 
hundred and eighty-five pieces of cannon, seven thousand muskets, three 
ships of the line and seven smaller vessels fell into the hands of the allies 



THE Revolution of France had now run through the several changes 
of universal enthusiasm, general suffering, plebeian revolt, bloody anar- 
chy, democratic cruelty and military despotism. There remained a last 
stage to which it had not yet arrived; this was, the rule of a SINGLE 
DESPOT, a result to which the weakness consequent on exhausted passion 
was speedily bringing the country. 

'Ihe election of a new third of the Legislature, in May, 1799, ended in 
a return of members adverse to the government established by Augereau's 
bayonets, who waited only for an opportunity to remove that faction from 
the helm of state. In the Directory, it fell to Rewbell's lot to retire, and 
Sieyes was chosen in his place. The people of France were already 
sufficiently dissatisfied with the conduct of their precedent rulers, when 
tie disasters of the campaign in Italy and the Alps raised their discon- 
.ent to exasperation. In the midst of this effervescence, the restraints 
imposed on the liberty of the press could no longer be maintained, and 
the influence of the daily journals was suddenly brought to bear with 
prodigious force against the government. 

1799.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 127 

A conspiracy was soon organized, of which Sieyes became the head, 
and a large number of both Councils its members. By a series of 
intrigues, they managed to displace Lareveiilere and Merlin from the 
Directory, and appointed General Moulins and Roger Ducos their suc- 
cessors. But these measures, though they placed the government in 
new hands, did not bring to it any accession of vigor or ability. Imme- 
diately after these appointments in the Directory had taken place, news 
was received of the capture of Zurich by the Archduke, and of the suc- 
cess of the allies in Italy ; disasters which rendered it incumbent on the 
Directory to gain favor with the people by some new and decisive effort. 
For this purpose, they made several changes in the commands of the 
army, ordered a conscription of two hundred thousand men to recruit 
their diminished ranks, and levied a forced loan of one hundred and 
twenty millions of francs from the more opulent inhabitants. At the 
same time, as the Jacobins were beginning to make head, and threatened 
serious disturbances, Fouche was appointed minister of police, and his 
energetic measures soon put an end to the intrigues of that dangerous 
party. It was not long, however, before the new Directory grew as un- 
popular as the old one ; and as this state of affairs was greatly promoted 
by the denunciations of the daily journals, which had now become as 
violent in their opposition to the present, as they but recently were to the 
former Directory, a decree was issued for the arrest of eleven of the 
disaffected editors. This bold step again threw the whole country into 
confusion; and the more reflecting part of the inhabitants began to look 
around in the greatest anxiety, dreading another revolution, and won- 
dering what would be its course and who its master spirit. The Direc- 
tory, too, felt the want of a military chief capable of putting an end to 
these distractions, and of extricating the country from the perils con- 
sequent on the alarming progress of the allies. " We must have done with 
declaimers," said Sieyes; "what we want is a head and a sword." It is 
not strange that, in this emergency, all eyes were at length turned toward 
the youthful hero who had hitherto chained victory to his standards. 

Napoleon, on his return to Alexandria, after his victory over the Tuiks 
at Aboukir, on the 25th of July, learned the situation of affairs in Eu- 
rope from some newspapers sent on shore by Sir Sidney Smith ; and he 
adopted the extraordinary resolution of abandoning his army to its fate, 
and returning privately to France. Leaving, therefore, Kleber to direct 
the government, he set out from Alexandria, on the 22nd of August, ac- 
companied by Berthier, Lannes, Murat, Marmont, Andreossy, Berthollet, 
Monge and Bourrienne, escorted by a few faithful guides. The party 
embarked on a solitary part of the beach, in some fishing boats, which 
conveyed them to two French frigates, lying off the shore. Napoleon 
ordered the ships to be steered along the coast of Africa, in order that, if 
pursued by the English cruisers, and no other means of escape v^ere left, 
he might land on the deserts of Lybia, and depend on chance for there- 
after reaching Europe. But his voyage, though protracted by adverse 
winds, was successful ; and, after a narrow escape from the English fleet 
near the coast of France, the frigates anchored in the Bay of Frejus, on 
the 8th of October. 

The arrival of Napoleon at this opportune moment, excited the public 
enthusiasm to the highest pitch. His unauthorized and shameful deser- 
tion of the army was overlooked, and all joined, by universal acclamation, 


in hailing him as the destined saviour of his country. He reached Paris 
on the 16th of October, and presented himself unexpectedly before the 
Directory. Their reception of the renowned commander was, to all out- 
ward appearance, extremely cordial and flattering ; yet a vague disquietude 
had already taken possession of their minds, as to his ulterior intentions. 
Napoleon, on his own part, although convinced that the moment he had 
long wished for had arrived, and also fully determined to seize the 
supreme authority, was yet undecided as to the manner of carrying his 
purpose into effect. And, indeed, so general was the conviction, about 
this period, of the impossibility of continuing the government of France 
under the Republican form, that previous to Napoleon's return, various 
projects had not only been set on foot, but were far advanced, for the 
restoration of monarchical authority. The brothers of Napoleon, Joseph 
and Lucien, were deeply implicated in these intrigues : the Abbe Sieyes 
at one time thought of placing the Duke of Brunswick on the throne : and 
Barras was not averse to the restoration of the Bourbons, but was in fact 
negotiating with Louis XVIII. for that purpose. 

No sooner had Napoleon taken possession of his unassuming dwelling 
in the Rue Chantereine, than the generals who had been sounded by Jo- 
seph and Lucien, hastened to pay their court to him ; and with them carne 
the officers who conceived themselves to have been ill used by the Direc- 
tory. In addition to Lannes, Murat and Berthier who had shared his 
fortunes in Egypt, and were warmly attached to him, Jourdan, Augereau, 
Macdonald, Bournonville, Le Clerc, Lefebvre and Marbot concurred in 
offering the military dictatorship to Napoleon ; and Moreau, although at 
first undecided, was at length won to the same course by the address of 
his great rival. Many of the most influential members of the Councils 
were also disposed to favor the enterprise : Sieyes and Roger Ducos gave 
it their countenance ; and Moulins, Cambaceres, Fouche, and Real, were 
assiduous in their attendance. These individuals, however, were as yet 
far from agreeing on the precise course to be adopted. 

At length, on the 5th of November, after the conspiracy had been in 
progress for nearly a month, a banquet, under the direction of Lucien 
Bonaparte, was given at the Council-Hall of the Ancients, in honor of 
Napoleon. The feast passed off with sombre tranquillity. Every one 
spoke in a whisper ; anxiety was depicted on each face ; and Napoleon's 
own countenance was greatly disturbed. He soon rose from the table and 
left the Hall, where the chief object of the party had already been accom- 
plished, the bringing together, namely, of six hundred persons of various 
political principles, and thus engaging them to act in unison in some com- 
nibn enterprise. In the course of the night, the final arrangements were 
made between Sieyes and Napoleon. It was agreed that the governmen 
should be overturned, and, in place of the Directory, three consuls ap 
pointed, charged with a dictatorial power, which was to last three months 
that Napoleon, Sieyes and Roger Ducos should fill these stations, and thai 
the Council of Ancients should pass a decree on the 8th of November, at 
seven in the morning, transferring the legislative body to St. Cloud, and 
appointing Napoleon commander of the guard of the Council, of the garri- 
son at Paris, and of the National Guard. 

During the two critical days that intervened, the secret was faithfully 
kept, and every preliminary arrangement completed. At daybreak on 
the 8th of November, the boulevards were filled with a numerous and 

3799.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 120 

splendid cavalry, and all the officers in and around Paris repaired in full 
dress to the Rue Chantereine. The Council met at the appointed hour, 
and after some debate, the decree was passed, transferring the seat of the 
legislative body to St. Cloud, appointing their meeting there for the fol- 
lowing day at noon, and charging Napoleon with full powers to see thest- 
measures carried into effect. t This extraordinary decree was then or- 
dered to be placarded on the walls of Paris, and dispatched to all the au- 
thorities. When this was completed, Napoleon presented himself at the 
bar of the A.ncients, attended by his staff; he complimented the mem- 
bers on their firmness, which he averred had saved the country, and 
announced his determination to have and to support a republic. A deputy 
attempted to speak in reply, but the president stopped him, on the ground 
that all deliberation was interdicted until the Council met at St. Cloud. 
The assembly then broke up, and Napoleon proceeded to the garden of 
the Tuileries, where he passed in review the regiments of the garrison, 
addressing to each a few energetic words. The weather was beautiful ; 
the confluence of spectators immense ; their acclamations rent the sky ; 
and everything announced the transition from anarchy to despotic power. 

In the mean time, the Council of Five Hundred, having received a 
confused account of the revolution that was in progress, tumultuously 
assembled in their hall. They were hardly convened when a message 
arrived from the Ancients with the decree of removal to St. Cloud. The 
moment it was read, a number of voices broke forth ; but the president, 
Lucien Bonaparte, cut them short, by referring to the decree which pro- 
hibited debate until after their removal. The Directory was next disposed 
of, by Napoleon's compelling the members to resign. 

On the morning of the 9th, a military force, five thousand strong, sur- 
rounded St. Cloud ; but the Council of Five Hundred were nothing 
daunted, and in their preliminary discussions in the garden of the palace, 
a majority of them resolved to oppose the revolution. The Ancients were 
greatly disturbed at this unexpected resistance, and many of them were 
beginning to regret their own precipitancy, when the hour arrived for 
opening the assembly. 

Lucien Bonaparte was in the chair of the Five Hundred, and Gaudin 
ascended the tribune and commenced a set speech, thanking the Ancients 
for their energetic measures, and proposing the formation of a committee 
of seven persons to report on the state of the Republic. But the moment 
he concluded, a violent opposition arose ; and tumultuous cries of " Down 
with the dictators ! Long live the Constitution !" prevented all further 

Napoleon, who saw the dangerous nature of the crisis, went to the hall 
of the Five Hundred, left his suite and soldiers at the door, and entered 
alone and uncovered. As he made his way to the bar, cries of " Down 
with the tyrant ! death to the dictator !" drowned all other voices ; and 
the deputies, rushing from their places, crowded around and heaped on 
him all manner of personal invectives. At this juncture, two of his grena- 
diers at the door, alarmed for his safety, ran forward, took him in their 
arms and bore him out of the hall. As soon as he was gone, Lucien 
strove to restore order ; but, finding his efforts ineffectual, he resigned 
the chair, and stood before the bar as the counsel of his brother. Just 
as he began to speak, an officer with ten grenadiers entered. The officer 
stepped to Lucien, laid his hand on his shoulder, and whispered, " Bv 


your brother's orders:" the grenadiers shouted, "Down with the assas- 
sins !" and Lucien left the hall with his guard. 

Meanwhile, Napoleon had descended to the court, mounted on horse- 
back and appealed to the soldiers, assuring them that when he was about 
to point out to the Council the means of saving the country, the deputies 
had answered him with poniards. Lucien, soon joined him, corroborated 
his words, and urged the troops to dissolve the Council by force. The 
word was given, the grenadiers advanced with fixed bayonets into the 
hall, and the members of the Council, in dismay, threw themselves out 
of the windows to avoid the charge. At eleven o'clock that night, a por- 
tion of the members of both Councils, not exceeding sixty persons in all, 
assembled, and unanimously passed a decree abolishing the Directory, 
expelling sixty-one refractory members of the Councils, adjourning the 
Legislature for three months, and vesting the executive power in the 
mean time in the hands of Napoleon, Sieves and Roger Ducos, under the 
title of provisional consuls. Two commissions of twenty-five members 
each, were also appointed from each Council, to unite with the consuls in 
the formation of a new Constitution. Some discussion arose in arranging 
the details of that instrument ; but it ended in the assumption of supreme 
power by Napoleon, as First Consul, associated with two other consuls 
holding nominal authority. To these were added eighty senators, a hun- 
dred tribunes, and three hundred legislators, who forthwith proceeded to 
exercise all the functions of government. Sifiyes and Roger Ducos soon 
resigned their offices, and Napoleon appointed in their stead Cambaceres 
and Le Brun. Talleyrand was made minister of Foreign Affairs, Fouche~ 
was retained in the Police, and La Place received the portfolio of the 
Interior. The new Constitution, on being submitted to the people, was 
approved by three millions eleven thousand and seven votes: that of 1793 
had but one million eight hundred and one thousand nine hundred and 
eighteen ; and that of 1795, one million and fifty-seven thousand three 
hundred and ninety. 

One of Napoleon's first measures, on arriving at the consular throne, 
was to make proposals of peace to the British government, which he did 
through the medium of a letter, in his own name, to the King of England. 
His communication was couched in general terms, expressive, indeed, of 
a desire for peace, but filled with vague questions as to the continuance 
of the war, instead of designating some conditions by which it might be 
brought to a close. Lord Grenville's answer was more explicit, disclaim- 
ing any intention, on the part of his majesty, to control or interfere with 
the internal policy of France, but resolving nevertheless to resist her 
foreign aggressions; and at the same time avowing a disposition for peace 
whenever the French government should evince a similar desire, accom- 
panied by a declaration of its principles and the requisite proofs of its 

The debate on the question of continuing the war was prolonged through 
several weeks in Parliament ; and at length, on the 3rd of February, 1800, 
the belligerent measures of the ministry were sustained by a vote of two 
hundred and sixty-five to sixty-four. This was followed by a vote of sup- 
plies to the army and navy proportioned to the importance of the contest. 

Several domestic measures of consequence, were also adopted during 
this session. The Bank charter was renewed for twenty-one years, in 
consideration of which, the directors made a loan to the government of 

1800.1 HISTORY OF EUROPE. 131 

three millions sterling, for six years without interest. The union of Ire- 
land with Great Britain, after a stormy debate in both houses of the Dublin 
Parliament, was carried by a large majority, to which event the powerful 
abilities of Lord Castlereagh greatly contributed. By the treaty of union, 
the Irish peers for the united imperial Parliament were limited to twenty- 
eight temporal and four spiritual ; the former elected for life by the Irish 
peerage, and the latter, by rotation ; and the commoners were limited to 
one hundred. The churches of England and Ireland were united, and 
provision made for their union, preservation, discipline, doctrine and wor- 
ship. Commercial privileges were fairly participated, the national debt of 
each was imposed as a burden on its own finances, and the general expen- 
diture for the next ensuing twenty years, ordered to be defrayed in the 
proportion of fifteen for Great Britain and two for Ireland. The laws and 
courts of both kingdoms were maintained on their present footing, subject 
to such alterations as the united Parliament might deem expedient. This 
important measure was carried in the British House of Commons, by a 
vote of two hundred and eight to twenty-six, and in the Lords, by seventy- 
five to seven. 

Since the financial crisis of 1797, when the suspension of specie pay- 
ments took place, the prosperity of the British Empire had been steadily 
and rapidly increasing. Prices of every kind of produce had risen, and 
the industrious classes were, generally speaking, in affluent circumstances. 
Immense fortunes rewarded the efforts of commercial enterprise ; the de- 
mand and value of labor, increased by the withdrawal of nearly four 
hundred thousand soldiers and sailors, was almost unlimited ; and even the 
increasing weight of taxation and the alarming magnitude of the national 
debt, were but little felt amid the general rise of prices and incomes 
resulting from the profuse expenditure and lavish issue of paper by the 
government. One class only, that of annuitants, and all depending on a 
fixed income, experienced a decline of comforts, which in many cases was 
greatly aggravated by the high prices and scarcity following the disastrous 
harvest of 1799. The attention of Parliament was early directed to the 
means of alleviating the famine of that year. An act was passed to lower 
the quality of all the bread baked in the kingdom ; the importation of rice 
and maize was encouraged by liberal bounties ; distillation from grain 
was prohibited, and by these and other means an additional supply of 
grain, to the enormous amount of two and a half millions of quarters, was 
procured for the use of the inhabitants. 

The jealousies which led to a rupture between the Austrians and Rus- 
sians at the close of 1799, were soon after extended to the relations of the 
Emperor Paul with Great Britain, and were greatly augmented by the 
issue of the expedition against Holland. Napoleon promptly availed 
himself of this state of affairs, and sent back to the Emperor all the 
Russian prisoners taken in the last campaign, not only without exchange, 
but newly equipped in their native uniform : and this was followed by a 
succession of civilities arid courtesies, between the cabinets of St. Peters- 
burg and Paris, which terminated in the dismissal from Russia of Lord 
Whitworth, the English minister; and the arrival at Paris of Baron 
Springborton, the Russian ambassador. 

The Archduke Charles made great exertions in the close of the year 
1799, to reorganize the military forces of Austria ; at the same time, afte^r 
the secession of Russia was confirmed, he urgently recommended the 



Aulic Council to fake advantage of the present opportunity to conclude a 
peace with France, which Napoleon offered on the basis of the Campo 
Formio treaty. But the Council were bent on prosecuting the war, and 
they went so far as to requite the sound and prudent advice of the Arch- 
duke, by dismissing him from the service and appointing Kray in his 

Napoleon's measures for maintaining the war were befitting his talents 
and energy, and were besides much facilitated by the new regulations, 
which he introduced in the management of the national finances. On 
the conditional refusal of Great Britain to treat for peace, he issued an 
exciting proclamation, telling the people that the English ministry had 
rejected his proposals for peace, and that to attain it, he needed money, 
iron and soldiers ; and he swore that, these being conceded, he would 
combat only for the happiness of France, and the peace of the world. A 
conscription was ordered for the whole youth of France, without any 
exemption on account of rank or fortune, which produced a supply of one 
aundred and twenty thousand men ; and thirty thousand experienced sol- 
diers were gained, in addition, by a demand for all the veterans who had 
obtained leave of absence during the eight preceding years. Various 
improvements were effected in the artillery department, which greatly 
augmented the efficiency of that important arm of the public service. 
Twenty-five thousand horses, brought from the interior provinces, were 
distributed among the artillery and cavalry on the frontier ; and all the 
stores and equipments of the armies were repaired with a celerity so 
extraordinary that it would appear incredible, if long experience did not 
prove, that confidence in the vigor and stability of a government operates 
as rapidly in increasing, as the vacillation and insecurity of democracy 
does in withering the national resources. 

While these energetic measures for conquest were in progress, Napo- 
leon applied himself to ulterior projects, which he had already resolved 
on. He endowed the officers of state, and all the members of the legis- 
lature, with ample salaries ; even the tribunes, who were professedly 
created as barriers for the people against governmental encroachments, 
received each an annual compensation of seventeen thousand francs. He 
also commenced the demolition of all ensigns and memorials, which re- 
called the ideas of liberty and equality : the engraved image of the 
Republic, at the head of official letters, was cancelled ; and the habili- 
ments of authority were replaced by the military dress, so that the courl 
of the first magistrate of the Republic bore the appearance of a general's 
head-quarters. These acts were followed by a total suppression of the 
liberty of the press ; and not long after, preparations were made by Na- 
poleon for removing from his place of residence to the Tuileries, which 
was accomplished on the 19th of February, 1800, with great pomp and 
military display. On that day, royalty was, in effect, restored in France, 
somewhat less than eight years after it had been formally abolished by 
the revolt of the 10th of August. No sooner was Napoleon established 
at the Tuileries, than the usages, dress and ceremonial of a court were 
resumed. The anterooms were filled with chamberlains, pages and 
esquires; footmen, in brilliant liveries, crowded the lobbies and stair- 
cases ; and Josephine presided over the drawing-room, with a grace well 
becoming the brilliancy of the assemblage. 



AT the opening of the campaign of 1800, Field-marshal Kray had his 
head-quarters at Donauschingen, but his chief magazines were in the 
rear at Stockach, Engen, Moeskirch and Biberach. His right wing, 
twenty-six thousand strong, under Starray, rested on the Maine ; the left, 
consisting of twenty-six thousand men and seven thousand militia, under 
the Prince of Reuss, was in the Tyrol ; and the centre, under Kray in 
person, forty-three thousand strong, was stationed behind the Black For- 
est: while a reserve of fifteen thousand, commanded by Keinmayer, 
guarded the passes from the Renchen to the Valley of Hell, and formed 
the link connecting the centre with the right wing. Thus, although the 
total Imperialist force exceeded one hundred and fifteen thousand men, 
the divisions were stationed at such distances from each other as to be 
incapable of rendering effectual aid in case of need. 

The French army was also divided into three corps. The right, thirty- 
two thousand strong, under Lecourbe, occupied the Cantons of Switzerland 
from the St. Gothard to Bale ; the centre, under St. Cyr, consisted ol 
twenty-nine thousand men, and occupied the left bank of the Rhine from 
New Brisach to Plobsheim ; the left, under Sainte Suzanne, twenty-one 
thousand strong, extended from Kehl to Haguenau. In addition to these, 
Moreau, who was general-in-chief of the whole force, was at the head of 
twenty-eight thousand men in the neighborhood of Bale. Moreau had also 
at disposal, the garrisons of the fortresses in his vicinity, which together 
might be estimated as a reserve of thirty-two thousand men ; and his pos- 
session of the bridges of Kehl, New Brisach, and Bale, gave him the 
means of crossing the Rhine at pleasure. The plan for opening the 
campaign, as arranged between Moreau and Napoleon, was to make a 
feint against the corps of Keinmayer and the Austrian right ; and, having 
thus drawn Kray's attention to that quarter, to concentrate the French 
centre and left upon the Imperial centre, break through the Austrians' 
line, cut off their communication with the Tyrol and Italy, and force 
them to the banks of the Danube. 

The preliminary movements of this plan were executed with precision, 
and the Austrian generals, perplexed at the apparently contradictory 
character of the French evolutions, were in great uncertainty as to the 
point where the storm was really to burst ; and were therefore compelled 
to await it without any material change of position. Under these cir- 
cumstances, Moreau directed Lecourbe to move toward Stockach, and 
separate the Austrian left wing from its centre ; this order was promptly 
executed, and the French general, falling in with an Austrian corps, 
under the Prince of Lorraine, defeated it with a loss of three thousand 
prisoners and eight pieces of cannon. On the same day, May 2nd. Mo- 
reau attacked the main body of Austrians, in the plain before Rngen. 
Kray maintained his ground with great resolution until nightfall, when 
the French, being reenforced by St. Cyr, renewed the battle and forced 
the Austrians to retreat. The loss on each side was about seven thou- 


sand men ; but the advantages of the victory remained with the French, 
by reason of its moral effect on the troops of both armies. 

On the 4th of May, Kray retired to a strong position in front of Moes- 
kirch, the natural and military defences of which place seemed to render 
it almost inaccessible to an attacking army. The French soon advanced 
in great force, preceded by Lecourbe, who, in hastening to form a junction 
with Moreau, arrived on the ground sooner than the designated time. 
He immediately attacked, without waiting for the main army to come 
up ; hut he was received with such a storm from the Austrian batteries, 
that he soon fell back, and took refuge in a neighboring wood, to avoid 
the shot. Moreau now approached, and ordered the division of Lorges to 
attack Kray's intrenchments on the left : but this corps, too, was thrown 
into confusion, and routed by the Austrian fire. Encouraged by this 
success, Kray made a sally with his right wing, which was, however, 
promptly repulsed by the French ; and Moreau, following up this advan- 
tage by a simultaneous attack on all points of the Austrian left, pushed 
his columns into the village of Moeskirch, and carried that part of the 
Imperialist position. Kray now withdrew his defeated left wing, and 
bravely maintained the action with his centre and right. Both parties 
redoubled their efforts, but at length the day closed, leaving a part of 
the field in the hands of the Austrians, while the French retained the 
remainder. The loss on each side was about six thousand men. 

Kray retired across the Danube on the following day, and on the 7th, 
was joined by Keinmayer's division, at Sigmaringen. With this aug- 
mented force, he recrossed the Danube and moved toward Biberach, in 
order to secure the magazines at that place, and transport them to the 
intrenched camp at Ulm. But on the 9th, St. Cyr came up with an 
Austrian detachment at Biberach, and by means of his superior force, 
entirely routed them. Pursuing his success, the French general ad- 
vanced into the town, seized the magazines before the Austrians had time 
to destroy them, and compelled Kray to continue his march upon Ulm, 
where he arrived two days afterward, having lost in this affair at Bibe- 
rach, twenty-five hundred men in killed, wounded and prisoners, and five 
pieces of cannon. 

The Austrian commander, in retiring to Ulm, separated himself from 
his left wing in the Tyrol ; but in other respects he occupied, there, a 
very advantageous position. Its location was central; its defences were 
nearly impregnable, and daily accessions of strength were coming in 
from Bohemia and the hereditary states: while the French, unable to 
dislodge them by a sudden attack, and equally unable to advance into 
the Austrian dominions, leaving such a formidable army in their own 
rear, were brought to a stand, in spite of their previous successes. 

Nevertheless, as it was indispensable to the progress of the campaign 
that Kray should be driven from this stronghold, Moreau devoted all his 
energies to the task. He first divided his forces into three columns, and 
advanced to the Austrian intrenchments on three different points, hoping, 
by distracting the enemy's attention, to find a practicable opening in his 
lines. Kray narrowly watched this movement, and discovered that the 
French division under Sainte Suzanne was so far separated from the 
other two columns as to be precluded from their support. The Archduke 
Ferdinand was therefore dispatched against this corps, and, by an im- 
petuous and brilliant charge, completely routed Sainte Suzanne, and 


drove him back in disorder more than two leagues. Moreau, perceiving 
from this vigorous stroke, the danger of dividing his forces, tried the 
expedient of advancing into Bohemia, and occupying Augsburg; in the 
belief that Kray, when he saw his communications thus threatened, 
would abandon his position to maintain them. But Kray, well knowing 
that Moreau would not continue his march in that direction, as he would 
thereby be cut off from his own communications, patiently awaited the 
French commander's return ; a movement which Moreau gladly made, 
as soon as he found that Kray was not deceived by the artifice. At 
length, on the 19th of June, Moreau effected a passage across the Danube 
at Blindheim, and thence took a position at Hochstedt, which induced 
Kray to risk a general action. A short but desperate combat took place, 
in which the Austrians were defeated, and Kray, finding himself out- 
flanked, was compelled to evacuate his intrenchments at Ulm. He left 
a garrison of ten thousand men within its walls, and stationed his cavalry 
on the Brentz to cover his movement ; then, pushing forward his artillery 
and caissons, he followed with the main body of his army in three divis- 
ions, and by a masterly retreat on a semicircular line, of which the 
French occupied the base, he reached Nordlingen in safety on the evening 
of the 23rd of June. He thence moved along the Danube to Landshut, 
where he crossed the river, and finally retreated to Amfing on the Inn. 
Moreau left a detachment to invest Ulm, and with his main body occu- 
pied Munich. On the 15th of July, intelligence arrived of Napoleon's 
operations in the south, which led to a suspension of arms under the ap. 
pellation of the armistice of Parsdorf ; and for the present the campaign 
in this quarter was at an end. By this subsidiary treaty, hostilities were 
terminated in all parts of the Empire, and were not to be resumed with- 
out a notice of twelve days. 

The military operations in Italy were commenced by a formidable 
attack on the French defensive positions around Genoa, led on by Melas, 
with near sixty thousand Austrian troops. This beautiful city was pro- 
tected by a double line of strong fortifications, extending through the 
heights of the Appenines, that surround it, and the Imperialists every- 
where met with the most determined opposition from the French covering 
army : but Melas, aided by superiority of numbers, and the advantage 
which is inseparable from the initiative in mountain warfare, prevailed 
on every point. Soult, on the French right, was driven in from Monte- 
notte upon Genoa ; Savona, Cadebone, and Vado, were occupied by the 
Austrians, and the Republican left, under Suchet, was altogether de- 
tached from the centre and thrown back toward France. Hohenzollern, 
who was intrusted with the attack of the Bochetta, drove the French far 
up that important pass, and succeeded in retaining the crest of the moun- 
tains ; while Klenau, on the Austrian left, advanced in three columns up 
the narrow ravines leading to the eastern fortifications of Genoa, dis- 
lodged the French from the heights of Monte Faccio, and invested the 
forts of Quizzi, Richelieu, and San Tecla, within cannon-shot df Genoa. 

The situation of the French in Genoa was now critical, more especially,. 
as a large and influential part of the inhabitants were attached to the 
cause of the Imperialists, and ardently desired to throw off the democratic 
tyranny to which for four years they had been subjected. But Massena 
was not easily daunted. On the 7th of April, he sallied from the town, 
and attacked the Austrians on Monte Faccio with such vigor, that they 



were dislodged and driven from their posts with a loss of fifteen hundred 
prisoners. On the same day, however, the Imperialist right was greatly 
strengthened at Vado and St. Jaques, and the French were threatened 
with more serious evils in that quarter. Massena soon found that his 
partial success at Monte Faccio would be of little avail for the protection 
of Genoa, and he resolved on a more serious attack in the direction of 
Savona. Accordingly, he organized his forces for that purpose, and a 
series of desperate actions ensued, which continued during fifteen days; 
but in the event, he made no impression of consequence on the Austrians, 
and was driven back to the town with a loss of seven thousand men in 
killed and wounded. Melas now established a strict blockade of Genoa, 
and marched against the French left wing under Suchet, who had long 
been separated from the main army, but continued to maintain a position 
where he threatened the right of the Imperialists. He withstood the 
Austrian assault for a time at the Col di Tende, but on the 6th of May, 
he was forced across the frontier and over the Var, with a loss of more 
than three thousand men. After this event, nothing remained to the 
French of their conquests in Italy but the ground which was commanded 
by the cannoo of Genoa. 

The Austrians pressed the siege of Genoa with redoubled vigor, while 
the British fleet, maintaining a rigid blockade of the harbor, shut out all 
hope of relief from the sea ; so that the garrison and inhabitants soon be- 
gan to suffer for want of provisions. For a few days, Massena desisted 
from offensive operations, repaired the injury done to his defences, and 
established a system for the equal and economical distribution of his sup- 
plies ; but as the condition of the garrison was rapidly growing worse, he, 
on the 13th of May, resolved to break up the position of the besiegers by a 
powerful attack on Monte Creto. Soult led the Republican columns, and 
at first the Austrians began to give way ; but, rallying under the support 
of Hohenzollern's reserve, they drove the French back into the town, taking 
a large number of prisoners, and Soult himself among the number. 

With this repulse, Massena relinquished all efforts to raise the siege, 
and the horrors of famine and pestilence soon reduced the garrison to the 
last extremity. Finding, at length, that it was impossible to hold the 
place, Massena, on the 5th of June, surrendered Genoa to the Austrians, 
and was permitted to march out with his troops, artillery, baggage and 
ammunition. The favorable terms granted to Massena, and the facilities 
afforded him by the Austrians and the English fleet in expediting his de- 
parture, were soon explained by the intelligence of Napoleon's advance 
to Milan, of which the Austrian commander was aware previously to his 
agreeing to the capitulation. 

Napoleon, at the opening of the campaign, hesitated whether to unite 
himself with Moreau in Germany, or Massena in Italy ; but the decided 
success which accompanied the movements of the former commander, soon 
rendered the First Consul's aid unnecessary on the Rhine, and he therefore 
turned his attention to Italy, where the Austrians were victorious. In 
order to advance by the shortest route, and pursue a march that would place 
his army on the weakest point of the Austrian lines, he resolved to cross 
the Alps by the Great St. Bernard, and sent his engineers to explore the 
passage. When Marescot returned from the survey, he began to enume- 
rate the dangers of the attempt ; but Napoleon interrupted him, by say- 
ing, " Is it possible to pass ?" " Yes," answered Marescot, " but with great 

1800.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 137 

difficulty." "Let us set out, then," said Napoleon; and on the 9th of 
May, preparations were begun for the ascent. 

A hundred large fir-trees were provided, each so hollowed as to contain 
a piece of artillery ; the carriages of the guns were taken to pieces and 
placed on the backs of mules ; and the ammunition was dispersed among 
the peasants, who, induced by the large rewards offered them, arrived from 
all quarters to aid in the enterprise. On the 16th of May, Napoleon slept 
at the convent of St. Maurice, and on the following morning the army be- 
gan to ascend the mountain. The march continued through four days, 
and during each, from eight to ten thousand men passed along. Napoleon 
remained at St. Maurice until the 20th, when the whole had crossed. 
The march, though toilsome, presented no extraordinary difficulties, till 
the leading column arrived at St. Pierre : but from that village to the sum- 
mit, it was painful and laborious in the highest degree. A hundred men 
were harnessed to each gun, and they were relieved every half mile ; the 
soldiers vied with each other in dragging their load up the rugged track; 
and it soon became a point of honor for each column to prevent its cannon 
from falling behind. To encourage their efforts, the band of each regiment 
played the most lively airs, and, where the ascent was particularly steep, 
the charge was sounded : while the men, toiling painfully up and ready 
to sink under the weight of their arms and baggage, joined their voices to 
the noise of the instruments, making the solitudes of St. Bernard resound 
with the strains of military music. 

At length, the leading files reached the hospice at the summit, where, by 
the provident care of the monks, each soldier received a ration of bread 
and cheese and a draught of wine, as he passed ; a most seasonable supply, 
which exhausted the ample stores of the establishment ; but the liberality 
was amply compensated by the First Consul before the termination of the 

Lannes, who commanded the advanced guard, descended rapidly the 
beautiful valley of Aosta, occupied the town of that name, and overthrew, 
at Chatillon, a body of fifteen hundred Croatians, who endeavored to dis- 
pute his passage. The soldiers, finding themselves in a level and fertile 
valley, believed their difficulties were all passed, when suddenly their ad- 
vance was checked by the cannon of Bard. This fort, perched on a pyra- 
midal rock midway between the opposite cliffs of the valley, and not more 
than fifty yards distant from the base of either side, commands the narrow 
road that winds around its feet, and is beyond the reach of any attack other 
than regular approaches. The cannon of the fort, twenty -two in number, 
were so disposed on its well-constructed bastions as to reach not only every 
point of the road through the village below, but apparently every path on ' 
the mountains practicable for a single traveller. 

When Lannes became aware of this formidable obstacle he advanced to 
the front of his column, and ordered an assault on the village ; this was 
quickly carried by the French grenadiers, but the Austrians retired in 
good order to the rock above, whence the garrison of the fort poured an 
incessant fire on every column that attempted to pass. In a moment, the 
march of the whole army was arrested ; the alarm extended rapidly along 
the line from front to rear, and it seemed to be necessary to retreat over 
the mountains. Napoleon was at St. Bernard when this intelligence 
reached him. He instantly pushed forward, and with his spy-glass long 
and minutely surveyed the ground. After a time, he discovered that it 



was possible for the infantry to pass by a path along the face of the cliff, 
above the range of the guns of Bard ; but it was wholly impracticable for 

In this extremity, he summoned the fort to surrender, and threatened an 
instant assault in case of refusal ; but the Austrian commander replied as 
became a man of courage and honor, that he was well aware of the im- 
portance of his position, and that the means of defending it were in his 
power. Time now pressed, and almost every one was in despair ; but the 
genius and intrepidity of the French engineers surmounted the difficulty. 
The infantry and cavalry traversed, one by one, the path which Napoleon 
had discovered on the side of the mountain ; and in the night, the artil- 
lery-men moved their cannon gradually through the village, and close 
under the guns of the fort, by spreading straw and manure over the streets 
and wrapping the wheels, so that scarcely any sound was made by their 
transportation. In this manner, forty guns and a hundred caissons were 
conveyed beyond the reach of the fort, while the Austrians above, in un- 
conscious security, were sleeping beside their loaded cannon. During 
the following night, the same hazardous operation was repeated with equal 
success : and although the Austrian commander wrote to Melas that 
thirty-five thousand men and four thousand horse had defiled along the 
cliffs, but that not one piece of artillery should pass beneath his guns, the 
cannon and ammunition of the French army were in fact safely proceed- 
ing on the road to Ivrea. The passage was completed on the 26th of 
May, and on the 28th, the whole of the Republican forces with their 
artillery reached Ivrea, which place Lannes had already taken with the 
advanced guard. 

While the centre of Napoleon's army was thus surmounting the 
obstacles of St. Bernard, his right and left wings were equally successful 
in the movements assigned to them. Thurreau, with five thousand men, 
descended to Susa and Novalese ; Moncey, with sixteen thousand crossed 
the St. Gothard, and Bethencourt with a division of Swiss troops ascended 
the Simplon and forced the defile of Gondo. Consequently, more than 
sixty thousand men were assembling in the plains of Piedmont, and threat- 
ened the rear of the Imperial army. 

Napoleon directed his troops rapidly toward the Ticno, and reached 
the banks of that river on the 31st of May. The arrival of so great a 
force in a quarter where they were wholly unexpected, threw the Aus- 
trians into the utmost embarrassment ; and a general retreat, on their 
part, was the first consequence of the French advance. On the 2nd of 
June, the First Consul made a triumphal entry into Milan; where he 
instantly dismissed the Austrian authorities, and reinstated the Republican 
magistrates ; but, knowing that the chances of war might expose his par- 
tisans to severe reprisals, he wisely forbade any harsh measures against 
the vanquished party. The entrance into Milan was followed by a gene- 
ral submission of the towns in Lombardy. 

Melas, on learning the progress of the French army, concentrated his 
forces at Alexandria with all possible expedition ; while Napoleon hast- 
ened onto assail the detached columns of the Austrians before they could 
effect a junction with each other, Lannes first came up with a body of 
fifteen thousand men advantageously posted at Montebello, under the com- 
mand of Ott. His own corps numbered but nine thousand ; but as Victor 
with a similar force was only two leagues in his rear, he did not hesitate to 

1800.. HISTORY OF EUROPE. 139 

attack. The French infantry with great gallantry advanced in echellon, 
under a fire of grape-shot and musketry, to storm the hills on the right of 
the Austrian position ; but after making a temporary lodgment, they were 
driven with great slaughter down into the plain. The Imperialists fol- 
lowed up this success with an attack on the French centre, and the 
Republicans were there beginning to waver, when the arrival of Victor 
enabled the broken divisions to rally, and the contest was maintained for 
some hours, without advantage to either party. Napoleon, at length, 
came on with the division of Gardaune, and decided the battle. Ott, how- 
ever, retreated in good order, leaving behind him three thousand killed 
and wounded, and fifteen hundred prisoners : the French loss, in killed 
and wounded, was nearly the same. 

While Napoleon was thus driving the Austrians before him, Suchet, 
with the left wing of the army of Genoa, had made a stand against the 
pursuing Imperialists under Elnitz, and, by an impetuous assault on the 
banks of the Var, forced him, in turn, to retreat ; after which, by a skilful 
combination of movements and attacks, he at length drove him to Ceva, 
with a loss of one half of his whole corps. 

These operations rendered the situation of Melas highly critical. Na- 
poleon was in his front, Suchet in his rear, the Alps on the left, and the 
Appenines on the right : he had no hope of escape but by cutting his way 
through Napoleon's army ; and, with the resolution of a brave man, he 
adopted this alternative. While he was vigorously concentrating his 
forces for the enterprise, Napoleon, anticipating the movement, had for 
some days awaited his approach at Stradella, where Desaix arrived from 
Egypt with his aids-de-camp, Savary and Rapp, on the llth of June. In 
the belief that the Austrian commander was not likely to attack him in 
his present strong position, he resolved to give battle to Melas on his own 
ground ; for which purpose he advanced to the plains of Marengo, on the 
13th, and made his dispositions for the combat. The Austrian army 
amounted to thirty-one thousand men, including seven thousand five hun- 
dred cavalry ; and the French were twenty-nine thousand strong. 

By daybreak on the 14th of June, the whole force of Melas was in mo- 
tion, advancing in three columns over the bridges of the Bormida, toward 
the French position. Napoleon was surprised. He had been induced to 
believe during the night, that Melas intended to retreat ; and he had not, 
therefore, the slightest anticipation of his commencing the attack : nor was 
he prepared to receive it, for his right wing was near half a day's march 
in the rear. At eight o'clock, the Austrian infantry, under Haddick and 
Kaim, preceded by a splendid array of artillery, commenced the battle. 
They speedily overthrew Gardaune, who, with six battalions, was sta- 
tioned in front of the village of Marengo ; and, following on, encountered 
the corps of Victor and Lannes. Here, for two hours, the battle raged with 
the utmost fury. The opposing masses were within pistol-shot of each 
other, and all the chasms produced by the incessant discharge of artillery 
were rapidly filled up by a regular movement to the centre : but at length, 
the perseverance of the Austrians prevailed over the heroic devotion of 
the French ; the village was carried ; the stream that traversed it, forced ; 
and the Republicans were driven back to their second line in the rear. 
Here they made a desperate stand, and Haddick's division, disordered by 
success, was in turn forced back across the stream ; but the French could 
not follow up their advantage, and the Austrians, perceiving their weak* 


ness, returned to the charge, and Victor's line was broken. Thus en- 
couraged, Melas pushed on with additional forces, established himself in 
the village, and having outflanked Lannes, he, too, was compelled to 
retreat. At first, he retired by echellon in squares, with admirable dis- 
cipline ; but the Imperial cavalry, which swept like a tempest around 
the retreating troops, at length disordered their squares, while the Hunga- 
rian infantry, halting at every fifty yards, poured in destructive volleys 
at point-blank range, and the incessant storm of grape from the well-served 
Austrian artillery, completed the rout. The whole mass at length gave 
way; the plain was covered with a confused host of fugitives; the alarm 
spread even to the rear of the army; and the fatal cry "tout est perdu, 
sauve qui peut," echoed over the field. 

Matters were in this condition, when, at eleven o'clock, Napoleon 
arrived with a detachment of the right wing. The sight of his staff, sur- 
rounded by two hundred mounted grenadiers, and accompanied by the 
Consul's own guard of reserve, revived the spirit of the fugitives. Napo- 
leon immediately detached eight hundred grenadiers of his guard, to make 
head against Ott ; at the same time, he himself advanced with a demi- 
brigade to support Lannes, and sent five battalions under Monnier, to 
hold in check the Austrian light infantry on the left. The grenadiers 
advanced in squares into the midst of the plain, making their way through 
both their own fugitives and the enemy, and for a time they sustained the 
brunt of the battle ; but at length, the steady fire of the Austrian artil- 
lery, followed up by a charge of hussars, broke their ranks, and drove 
them back in disorder ; the leading battalions of Desaix's division, how- 
ever, came forward in time to cover their retreat. Melas now, deeming 
the victory secure, retired to Alexandria, leaving Zack, chief of his stafi^ 
to follow up his success : while Napoleon made arrangements to secure 
a retreat by the line of Castel Nuovo. 

It was now four o'clock ; and Desaix's main body, being the French 
right wing, made its appearance. " What do you think of the day ?" 
said Napoleon. " The battle is lost," answered Desaix ; " but it is early ; 
there is time to gain another one." Napoleon coincided with this opinion, 
but all the other officers advised a retreat. The combat was, therefore, 
to be renewed ; and Desaix put himself at the head of his division, arid 
pressed on to meet Zack's advancing columns, who, expecting no resist- 
ance, were at first thrown into disorder. They soon rallied, however, 
checked the French advance, and at this moment Desaix was mortally 
wounded by a ball in the breast. The Hungarian grenadiers pressed on, 
and the French column soon hesitated, broke, and gave way. At this 
critical moment, when everything seemed lost for Napoleon, Kellerman, 
by a sudden movement, conceived and undertaken by himself, changed 
the defeat into a victory. He was stationed with eight hundred cavalry 
in a vineyard, where the overhanging vines concealed him from sight ; 
and the advancing column of Zack, having just broken Desaix's division, 
was following up its success, and marching past Kellerman's squadron 
without being aware of his presence. In an instant, Kellerman dashed out 
on the unprotected flank of this column, threw it into inextricable confu- 
sion in less time than is requisite to relate the fact ; and, being supported 
by Desaix's division, which immediately rallied, made Zack himself, and 
two thousand of his grenadiers prisoners on the spot. The remainder of 
the column retreated in confusion- overturned those who were advancing 

1800.] HTSTORY OF EUROPE. 141 

to its support, and the entire Austrian army became, in those few moments, 
one mass of fugitives, flying across the plain. 

The tide of battle being thus suddenly and unexpectedly turned, it 
was easy to rally the broken French divisions, and secure the victory. 
The loss of the Imperialists was seven thousand killed and wtmnded, 
three thousand prisoners, eight standards and twenty pieces of cannon. 
The French sustained an equal loss in killed and wounded, together with 
one thousand prisoners taken in the early part of the day. But although 
the losses .on both sides were so nearly equal, defeat was highly disastrous 
to the Austrians ; for they fought to secure a passage through Napoleon's 
enveloping masses, and having failed, they were left without retreat ; so 
that, by a single victory, Napoleon had in effect destroyed his enemy, 
and gained the command of Italy. Nor was that all : for such a result, 
coming at the outset of his career as First Consul, served to fix him per- 
manently on the throne of France. 

In view of these brilliant consequences, one would suppose that Napo- 
leon might have been generous to Kellerman, who in reality and directly 
secured them : but his was a disposition that could not pardon one whose 
services chanced to dimmish the lustre of his own exploits. When this 
young officer appeared at head-quarters after the battle, Napoleon coolly 
said, " You made a good charge this evening ;" then turning to Bessieres, 
he added, " The guard has covered itself with glory." " I am glad you 
are pleased with my charge," said Kellerman, nothing daunted, " for it 
has placed the crown on your head." But the obligation was too great 
and too notorious to be forgiven, and Kellerman though promoted with 
the other generals, never aftenvard enjoyed the favor of Napoleon. 

On the following morning, after holding a council of war, Melas sent 
a flag of truce to the French head-quarters, with proposals fora capitula- 
tion. An armistice was immediately agreed upon, until an answer could 
be received from Vienna ; and, in the mean time, the Imperial army was 
to occupy the country between the Mincio and the Po, and the fortresses 
of Tortona, Milan, Turin, Pizzighitorie, Arona, Placentia, Ceva, Savona, 
Urbia, Coni, Alexandria and Genoa were to be surrendered to the French, 
with all their artillery and stores, the Austrians taking with them only 
their own cannon. 



Two days before intelligence was received of the battle of Marengo 
and the armistice that followed it, a treaty between Austria and Great 
Britain for the further prosecution of the war had been signed at Vienna : 
but even the disasters of that defeat could not shake the firmness or good 
faith of the Austrian cabinet. The inflexible Thugut, who then presided 
over its councils, was assailed by representations of the perils of the Em- 
pire ; but he opposed all such arguments by producing the treaty with 
England, and pointing out the disgrace that would attach to the Imperial 


government if, on the first appearance of danger, engagements so solemnly 
entered into were to be abandoned. Nor did the situation of affairs justify 
any measures of despondency. If the battle of Marengo had deprived 
the allied powers of Piedmont, the strength of the Imperial army was still 
unbroken : it had exchanged a disadvantageous offensive position in the 
Ligurian mountains, for an advantageous defensive one on the frontiers 
of Lombardy ; the cannon of Mantua, so formidable to France in 1796, 
still remained to arrest the progress of the victor; and the English 
forces of Abereromby, joined to the Neapolitan troops and the Imperial 
divisions in Ancona ancl Tuscany, might prove too formidable a body on 
the right flank of the Republicans, to permit any considerable advance 
toward the hereditary states. Nor were affairs by any means desperate 
in Germany. The advance of Moreau into Bavaria, while Ufm and In- 
golstadt were not reduced, was a perilous measure for the French ; and 
the line of the Inn furnished a defensive frontier not surpassed by any in 

Influenced by these considerations, the Austrian cabinet resolved to 
gain time, and, if they could not obtain tolerable terms of peace, to run 
all the hazard of a renewal of the war. -Count St. Julien was sent to 
Paris, as plenipotentiary on the part of Austria, bearing a letter from the 
Emperor individually, in which were these words .' " You will give credit 
to everything which Count St. Julien shall say on my part, and I will 
ratify whatever he shall do." In virtue of these powers, preliminaries 
of peace were signed at Paris, on the 28th of July, by the French and 
Austrian ministers. The treaty of Carnpo Formio was taken as the basis 
of the pacification, unless where changes had become necessary. It was 
provided that the frontier of the Rhine should belong to France, and the 
indemnities stipulated for Austria, by the secret articles of the treaty 
of Campo Formio, were to be given in Italy, instead of Germany. 

As the treaty was signed by Count St. Julien in virtue of the Emperor's 
letter only, it was further provided that these preliminary articles should 
not be binding until after being ratified by the respective governments : a 
clause of which the cabinet of Vienna availed themselves. On the 15th 
of August, the Austrian plenipotentiary was recalled, and notice given 
of the refusal to ratify. 

Napoleon was, or affected to be, highly indignant at this proceeding, 
and he immediately announced that the conclusion of the armistice should 
take place on the 10th of September, and ordered certain movements of 
the army in reference to that event. But he soon returned to more mode- 
rate sentiments, and dispatched full powers to M. Otto, resident at London 
as agent for the exchange of prisoners, to conclude a naval armistice with 
Great Britain. The object of this proposal, hitherto unknown in European 
diplomacy, 'was to obtain means, while the negotiations were pending, 
of throwing supplies into Egypt and Malta, the former of which stood 
greatly in need of assistance, while the latter was reduced to the last 
extremity from the vigilant blockade maintained for two years by the 
British cruisers. 

As soon as the English government received this proposal, they signified 

their desire for a general peace, but declined to agree in the mean time 

to a naval armistice, until the preliminaries of such general pacification 

were signed. Napoleon, however, was obstinately bent on saving Malta 

and Egypt, and insisted on the naval armistice as a sine qua non; declaring, 


that unless it were agreed to before the llth of September, he would 
recommence hostilities in both Italy and Germany. The urgency of 
the case, and the imminent danger that would ensue to Austria if war 
were so soon renewed, induced the cabinet of London to make some con- 
cession : they therefore presented to M. Otto a counter project for a sus- 
pension of hostilities between all the belligerent powers. By this it was 
proposed, that an armistice should lake place by land and sea, during 
which the ocean was to be open for the navigation of trading vessels of 
both nations ; Malta and Egypt were to be put on the same footing as the 
besieged fortresses in Germany, by the armistice of Parsdorf ; that is to 
say, they were to be provisioned for twelve days at a time, during the 
dependence of the negotiations. The blockade of Brest and other mari- 
time ports was to be raised, but the British squadrons would remain off 
their entrances, and ships of war would not be permitted to pass. Nothing 
could be more equitable toward France or generous towartfr-Austria, than 
these propositions. They compensated the recent disasters of the Impe- 
rialists on land with concessions by the British at s"ea, and abandoned to 
the vanquished on one element, those advantages of a free navigation 
which they could not obtain by force of arms, in consideration of the 
benefits that would accrue from a prolongation of the armistice to their 
allies on another. 

Napoleon, however, insisted on a condition which ultimately proved 
fatal to the negotiation. This was, that the French ships of the line only 
should be confined to their ports, but that frigates should have liberty of 
egress, and that six vessels of that description should be allowed to go 
from Toulon to Alexandria without being visited by the English cruisers. 
This condition was inadmissible, and the negotiation was broken off". 
The Austrian cabinet, being now left to contend alone with Napoleon, 
were in no condition to resist his demands. A new convention was there- 
fore concluded at Hohenlinden, on the 28th of September, by which the 
cession of the three German fortresses, Ulm, Philipsburg and Ingolstadt, 
was agreed on, and the armistice was prolonged for forty-five days, both 
in Germany and Italy. 

As soon as it became evident that Great Britain would not accede to 
the First Consul's demands, the portfolio of the French war department 
was placed in the hands of Carnot, and every exertion made to put all the 
armies in a condition to resume hostilities. On the same day that this 
took place, October 8th, a plot to assassinate Napoleon at the opera was 
discovered by the police. Cerachi and Demerville, the leaders of the 
conspiracy, and both determined Jacobins, were arrested and executed. 

It was not long before the French armies were in a very formidable 
condition. In addition to a corps of fifteen thousand under Macdonald at 
Dijon, and one of twenty thousand on the Maine under Augereau, the 
army of Italy was raised to eighty thousand men, and the grand army 
under Moreau in Bavaria to one hundred and ten thousand. Austria, 
too, foreseeing the result of the negotiations for peace, had made good use 
of the armistice to recruit and reorganize her forces, having raised her 
entire German army to one hundred and ten thousand men ; though its 
efficiency was greatly impaired by the usual system of the Aulic Council, 
which caused the troops to be scattered too much in detail over the coun- 
try ; and also by their injudicious removal of Kray, and the substitution 
in his place of the young Archduke John. In Italy, the ntal foice under 



Field-marshal Bellegarde amounted to one hundred thousand men ; but 
it was so subdivided that not more than sixty thousand could be assem- 
bled at any one point. Renewed efforts were made at this time to engage 
Russia and Prussia in the common cause; but they both declined to 

In the middle of September, the garrison of Malta, having been entirely 
reduced by famine, capitulated, on condition of being sent to France and 
not serving again until regularly exchanged : this noble fortress, therefore, 
with its unrivalled harbor and impregnable walls, was permanently 
annexed to the British dominions. The English also made themselves 
masters, in the course of this year, of Surinam, Berbice, St. Eustache 
and Demerara, Dutch settlements in the West Indies and on the main 
land adjoining them. 

After the death of Pope Pius VI., through the cruelty and tyranny of 
the French government, the Roman conclave made choice of Cardinal 
Chiaramonte as his successor, with the title of Pius VII. Rome at this 
time was suffering under the exactions of the recently recovered power 
of the King of Naples, and the new pontiff, without openly engaging in a 
war, lent a willing ear to the proposals of Napoleon. But in other parts 
of Italy, a feeling of entire hostility to France prevailed ; and in Tuscany 
an insurrection broke out among the peasants, which was promptly sub- 
dued, and with great cruelty, by the French troops. The army employed 
on this service was afterward dispatched to Leghorn, where they seized 
and confiscated forty-six English vessels with their cargoes. 

In the month of November, Napoleon announced the conclusion of the 
armistice, and on the 28th of that month, both parties were prepared to 
commence hostilities. The line of the Inn, behind which the Austrians 
were intrenched, is one of the strongest frontier positions in Europe ; and 
the true policy of the Imperial forces, at this time, was to remain on the 
defensive, but the Aulic Council decided on carrying the war into Bava- 
ria ; and accordingly, the Austrian columns were moved to Landshut on 
the 29th ; and as it chanced, Moreau, unaware of their march, was at 
the same time advancing toward Ampfing on such a line as to bring the 
flank of his left wing in immediate contact with the main body of the 
Imperialists. The consequence was, that despite the utmost efforts of 
Ney, Grenier and Legrand, the division was totally routed, and, falling 
back in confusion on the centre, spread terror and discouragement through 
the whole army. Had this success been vigorously followed up, there 
can be no doubt that Moreau would have suffered an overwhelming 
defeat. But the Archduke John, satisfied with his advantage, allowed 
the French troops to recover from their consternation ; and on the follow- 
ing day, they retired in good order through the forest of Hohenlinden to 
the ground beyond, which Moreau had previously studied as the probable 
theatre of a decisive battle, and where he now defended his position with 
great care and skill. 

The Archduke, after having thus allowed the enemy to escape when 
he might have taken him at advantage, resolved now to pursue him ; not 
imagining that Moreau had made a stand, but indulging the belief that 
he was retreating in disorder. On the 3rd of December, long before day- 
light, his whole army was in motion in three columns, and they plunged 
into the forest, trampling the yet unstained snow in full confidence of 
victory. From the outset, however, the most sinister presages attended 


their steps. During the night, the wind had changed, and the heavy 
rain of the preceding day turned into snow, which fell in such thick 
flakes as rendered it impossible to see twenty yards before the head of 
the columns; while the dreary expanse of the forest, under the boughs, 
presented a uniform white surface where the roads could not be distin- 
guished. The cross-paths between the roads, bad at any time, were 
almost impassable in such a storm; and each division, isolated in the 
snowy wilderness, was left to its own resources without receiving intel- 
ligence or aid from its associates. 

The central column, which advanced along the only good road, out- 
stripped the others, and its leading detachments had traversed the forest 
and approached the village of Hohenlinden about nine o'clock in the 
morning. It was there met by the division of Grouchy, and a furious 
conflict immediately commenced. The Austrians endeavored to debouch 
with their main body from the defile, and extend themselves along the 
front of the wood ; while the French strove to drive them back into the 
forest. Both parties made the most heroic efforts ; the falling snow at 
first prevented the troops of the opposing lines from seeing each other, 
but they aimed at the flashes which appeared through the gloom, and 
rushed forward with blind fury to the deadly charge of the bayonet. 
Gradually, however, the Austrians gained ground, and their ranks were 
extending themselves in front, when Grouchy and Grandjean, by leading 
on fresh battalions, forced them to retire into the wood. Here, the combat 
was maintained hand to hand among the trees and thickets with invincible 

In the mean time, the other columns had advanced by different roads 
to more remote parts of the field, and were warmly engaged in the battle. 
The right was assailed by Ney as it began to defile on that side from the 
forest, and it was driven back by such an impetuous charge that its 
ranks were broken, and the whole mass retired with a loss of eight 
pieces of cannon and a thousand prisoners. A similar fate awaited the 
left wing, which, being attacked by Grenier, was forced to retreat with 
still greater loss. Moreau was keeping the Austrian centre in check by 
a series of assaults with fresh detachments, when the defeat of both wings 
of the Archduke's army not only spread confusion into the main column, 
but, by disengaging a part of Ney's and Grenier's divisions, enabled him 
to bring an overwhelming force against the only corps of Imperialists 
that yet maintained its ground. Soon after this accumulation of strength 
began to be felt in front, the rear of the same column was assailed by 
Richepanse with two regiments of infantry. This combined attack was 
decisive. The Imperialists broke and fled in every direction, leaving 
more than a hundred pieces of cannon, and fourteen thousand men, killed, 
wounded and prisoners, on the field. 

The Archduke retired with his shattered forces during the night behind 
the Inn, where he made a show of defence; but Moreau soon crossed the 
river lower down than the Austrian position, and the Imperialists, being 
thus outflanked, again retreated and took post behind the Alza, to cover 
the roads leading to Salzburg and Vienna. But Moreau found, from 
the manner of the Archduke's retreat, that the spirit of the Austrian 
troops was broken ; and he continued his pursuit, with a determination of 
destroying the whole army before it could recover from its disasters. He 
therefore hastened on to Salzburg, where his advanced guard became 


enveloped in a thick fog ; and before Lecourbe, who led the attack, was 
aware of his danger, his corps was charged by a large body of Imperial 
horse, and routed with a loss of two thousand men. The affairs of the 
Archduke were, however, in too desperate a condition to be relieved by 
this partial success, and he retreated in the night, leaving Salsburg to 
its fate. Decaen took possession of it in the morning, and, for the first 
time, the Republican standards waved on the picturesque towers of that 
romantic city. 

The same day, Richepanse continued the pursuit, and on the 16th he 
overtook the Austrian rear at Herdorf, where he routed them with the 
loss of a thousand prisoners. For the next two days, he kept up a run- 
ning fight, at the end of which the Austrians reached Schwanstadt, arid 
endeavored to make a stand against their inveterate pursuers. Still, all 
was in vain. Nothing could resist the impetuosity of the French troops, 
and the Imperialists, again defeated with great loss, continued their flight. 

Affairs were in this disastrous state, when the Archduke Charles, to 
whom the nation unanimously appealed as the only means of saving the 
monarchy, arrived, and took command of the army. But when he 
reviewed the troops as they crossed the Traun, his experienced eye told 
him that little was to be hoped from their exertions: they were but a 
confused mass of infantry, cavalry and artillery: their discipline was 
lost ; the men neither grouped around their standards nor listened to the 
voice of their officers; dejection and despair were painted in every 
countenance. The Archduke, perceiving that resistance was hopeless, 
reluctantly dispatched a messenger to Moreau, soliciting an armistice ; 
which, after some hesitation on the part of the French general, was 
signed on the 25th of December. 

Before these events were brought to a conclusion in Germany, Macdon- 
ald was ordered to march his army of fifteen thousand men across the 
Alps, into the Italian Tyrol, by the passage of the Splugen. He arrived 
with his advanced guard at the village of that name, on the evening of 
the 26th of November, accompanied by a number of sappers, and the 
sledges containing his artillery. In the morning of the 27th, he com- 
menced the ascent. The country guides placed poles along the route ; 
the laborers followed and removed the snow, and the dragoons came next, 
to trample down the road with their horses' feet. In this manner, a de- 
tachment had, with great fatigue, nearly reached the summit; when the 
wind suddenly rose, an avalanche slid down the mountain, crossed the 
path and swept away thirty dragoons from the head of the column, into 
the abyss below, where they were dashed to pieces between the ice and 
the rocks. General Laboissiere, who led the van, was a little in advance 
of the dragoons ; he therefore escaped the avalanche, and proceeded in 
safety to the hospice above : but the remainder of the column, thunderstruck 
by such a catastrophe, returned to Splugen. The wind continued to blow 
with great violence for the three succeeding days, and detached so many 
avalanches, that the road was entirely blocked up ; and the guides declared 
that no efforts could render it passable in less than two weeks. Macdon- 
ald, however, was not to be daunted by such obstacles. Independently 
of his anxiety to fulfil his designated part in the campaign, necessity re- 
quired him to proceed ; for the unwonted accumulation of men and horses 
in these Alpine regions, promised soon to consume the whole substance 
of the country, and expose the troops to destruction from famine He 



consequently, made the best arrangements within his control, to reopen 
the passage. Four strong oxen were first sent along the route, led by 
experienced guides : these were followed by forty robust peasants, who 
cleared or beat down the snow ; two companies of sappers came next and 
improved the path ; and behind them rode the dragoons. A convoy of 
artillery, a hundred beasts of burden, and a strong rear-guard closed the 
march. Many men and horses were overwhelmed by the snow, and not 
a few perished from cold ; but at length, the hospice was gained, the 
descent on the other side achieved, and the advanced guard of the army 
reached the sunny fields of Campo Dolcino, at the southern base of the 
mountain. On the 5th of December, Macdonald commenced the passage 
with the remainder of his army ; and on the 7th, he reached Chiavenna 
with his whole force. 

But the difficulties of this enterprising commander did not terminate 
here : for his subsequent orders required him to penetrate into the valley 
of the Adige, by the route of Mont Tonal, on the summit of which ridge, 
after encountering all the perils of the ascent, he found his road barred 
by a corps of Austrian troops, posted behind a triple line of intrenchments. 
He advanced against this new obstacle with great intrepidity, and forced 
two of the lines ; but the third resisted every effort, and he was compelled 
to retrace his steps down the mountain. He now made a circuit to reach 
his destination in the Tyrol ; which, after a series of hardships, he at 
length accomplished on the 6th of January. All the operations in this 
quarter, however, were brought to an end by an armistice, agreed upon 
between the armies, at Treviso, on the 16th of the same month. By the 
conditions of this armistice, the Austrians were to surrender Peschiera, 
Verona, Legnago, Ancona and Ferrara ; but they retained Mantua, the 
chief object of the campaign. Napoleon was so irritated at these terms, 
that he never again intrusted an important command to Brune, by whom 
they were conceded. 

As the French troops were now disengaged from all other enemies in 
Italy, Napoleon directed a corps to advance on Naples, with the avowed 
intention of dismembering that kingdom. And this he would readily have 
accomplished, but for the heroic exertions of the Neapolitan queen, who, 
immediately after the battle of Marengo, anticipating such an invasion, 
set off alone from Palermo, and made a journey to St. Petersburg, where 
she implored the intervention of the Russian Emperor. Paul, whose 
chivalrous character was highly flattered by this adventurous step on the 
part of the queen, espoused her cause, and dispatched a special messenger 
to treat with Napoleon in her behalf. It may be presumed that, desirous 
as Napoleon was of maintaining a good understanding with Russia, this 
mediation was entirely successful ; and the First Consul, abandoning his 
hostile purposes, concluded a treaty with Naples, on the 9th of February. 

By this compact, known as the treaty of Foligno, it was provided that 
the Neapolitan troops should evacuate the Roman States, and that all the 
ports of Naples and Sicily should be closed against English and Turkish 
vessels of merchandise, as well as war, and remain shut until the conclu- 
sion of a general peace ; that port Longone in the island of Elba, Piom- 
bino in Tuscany, and a small territory on the sea-coast of that duchy, 
should be ceded to France ; and that in case of a menaced attack on the 
Neapolitan dominions, from the troops of Turkey or England, a French 
corps, equal in strengh to one that the Emperor of Russia might send, 



should be placed at the disposal of the King of Naples. Under the words 
of this last condition, was veiled the most important article of the treaty ; 
for, being speedily carried into effect, it revealed the intention of Napo- 
leon to take military possession of the whole peninsula. On the 1st of 
April, before either any requisition had been made by the King of Naples 
or any danger menaced his dominions, a corps of twelve thousand men, 
under the command of General Soult, set out from the French lines and 
took possession of the fortresses of Tarentum, Otranto, Brindisi, and all 
the harbors in the extremity of Calabria. The object of this obtrusive 
occupation was to facilitate the establishment of a communication with 
the army of Egypt. 

As a consequence of the armistice granted to the Archduke Charles in 
Germany, and that agreed upon with Brune at Treviso, negotiations for 
peace were entered into between Austria and France, which ended on 
the 9th of February, in the treaty of Luneville. The conditions of this 
treaty did not materially differ from those of the treaty of Campo Formio, 
or from those offered by Napoleon before the opening of the campaign : a 
remarkable fact, when it is considered how great an addition the victories 
of Marengo and Hohenlinden had since made to the preponderance of the 
French arms. 



THE various alternations of war, peace and neutrality that were now 
occurring between the different powers of Europe, led naturally to much 
discussion and controversy on the subject of maritime law, and the rights 
of merchant ships trading from neutral to belligerent countries. Under 
a strict construction of the law of nations, and without at all violating 
the provisions of that code, numerous seizures and confiscations had been 
made by the British government, which revived the jealousies of the 
other European states, at the almost unlimited power of the English navy. 
In December, 1799, an altercation took place in the Straits of Gibraltar 
between some British frigates and a Danish ship, in which the Dane 
refused to submit to a search of the vessels under his convoy: but 
eventually, the government of Denmark formally disavowed the conduct 
of their captain, and the amicable relations remained unchanged. But 
the next "collision of a similar character, led to more serious results. On 
the 25th of July, 1800, the cornmander of the Danish frigate Freya re- 
fused to allow his ships to be searched, but offered to show certificates to 
the British officer, specifying the nature of the cargoes under his charge : 
and he intimated, that if a boat were sent to make search it would be fired 
upon. On receiving this reply, the British captain laid his vessel along, 
side the Dane ; and, as the latter persisted, he discharged a few broadsides 
at the Freya, took possession of her and the ships under her convoy, and 
carried them into the Downs. 


At the same time, the English cabinet had learned that hostile negotia- 
tions were in progress between the Northern courts relative to neutral 
rights ; and deeming it probable that these would end in a declaration of 
hostile intentions, they wisely resolved to anticipate an attack. For this 
purpose, Lord Whitworth was sent on a special message to Copenhagen ; 
and, to give greater weight to his arguments, a squadron of nine sail of 
the line, four bombs and five frigates was dispatched to the Sound, under 
the command of Admiral Dickson. The Admiral found four line-of- 
battle ships moored across the strait from Cronenberg Castle to the Swe- 
dish shore ; but the English fleet passed without the commission of any 
act of hostility on either side, and came to anchor off Copenhagen. The 
Danes were employed in strengthening their fortifications ; batteries 
were erected on advantageous points near the coast, and three floating 
bulwarks were stationed at the mouth of the harbor* but their prepara- 
tions were incomplete, and the strength of the British squadron precluded 
the hope of a successful resistance. An accommodation was therefore 
entered into, the principal conditions of which were, that the frigate and 
merchant vessels -carried into the Downs, should be repaired at the ex- 
pense of the British government, and the question of right of search 
adjourned to London, for further consideration. In the mean time, 
Danish trading ships were to sail with convoy only in the Mediter- 
ranean, where it was necessary to guard against the Barbary cruisers, 
and their other vessels were to be liable, as before, to search. 

This treaty was, under the circumstances, a triumph to Great Britain ; 
and it would have led to no disastrous consequences, but for the interfer- 
ence of the Emperor of Russia. The Northern Autocrat had been greatly 
irritated at the ill-success of the expedition to Holland ; he was further 
exasperated at the refusal of the British government to include Russian 
prisoners with English, in the exchange with the French ; and finally, the 
taking possession by England of Malta which fortress Paul, as Grand- 
master of the order of St. John of Jerusalem, felt bound to restore to that 
celebrated order, while at the same time he knew that England would 
not relinquish it excited him to o^n- hostility and outrage. He 
instantly ordered an embargo on all Britisn ships in the Russian harbors ; 
and thereby detained nearly three hundred vessels with valuable cargoes, 
until the frost had set in and rendered the Baltic impassable. Nor was 
this all. ' The crews of these vessels, with Asiatic barbarity, and in 
defiance of the usages of civilized states, were marched off into prisons in 
the interior, some of them a thousand miles from the coast ; and all the 
English property on shore was put under sequestration. When these 
orders were promulged, several British ships at Narva weighed anchor, 
and escaped the embargo : this so enraged the Autocrat, that he com- 
manded the remaining vessels in the harbor to be burned, and published 
a declaration that the embargo should not be removed until Malta was 
given up to Russia. 

The moment that Russia thus made common cause with the other 
Northern powers, Prussia and France threw their influence into the scale, 
and brought about a general maritime confederacy, hostile to Great 
Britain, which was signed ^ Russia, Sweden and Denmark, on the 16th 
of December, 1800. By this treaty, the contracting parties proclaimed 
that free ships made free goods ; that the flag covered the merchandise ; ' 
and that a port is to be considered under blockade, only when such a force 


is stationed at its mouth as renders an entrance dangerous. They fur- 
ther declared, that the certificate of a captain of a convoy that no contra- 
band goods were under his charge, should relieve his vessels from search ; 
and that if any of the parties to this convention should be dealt with 
otherwise than in conformity to its enactments, the other parties would 
make common cause with the party aggrieved, and aid in its defence. 

As it was manifest, that if this new code of maritime law were recog- 
nized, all the victories of the British navy would be fruitless since 
France, by means of neutral vessels, could regain her whole commerce, 
import all the materials for the construction of a navy, and educate a 
body of sailors to man her ships of war, when so constructed Mr. Pitt 
resolved on such measures of reprisal, as would show the Northern pow- 
ers the qualities of the nation they had thought fit to provoke. On the 
14th of January, 18dl,the British government issued an order for a gen- 
eral embargo on all vessels belonging to any of the confederated powers ; 
and letters of marque were granted for the capture of the numerous ves- 
sels belonging to those states. The House of Commons sustained Mr. 
Pitt's measures by a vote of two hundred and forty-five to sixty-three, and 
the result was, that nearly one half the merchant ships at sea, belonging 
to the Northern powers, found their way into the harbors of Great Britain. 

The union of Ireland with England, from which such important 
results were anticipated, proved a source of weakness to the British 
Empire at this important crisis. By a series of concessions, which com- 
menced soon after the coronation of George III. and continued through 
his reign, the Irish Catholics had been placed nearly on a level with 
their Protestant fellow-subjects, and they were at length excluded only 
from sitting in Parliament, and from holding about thirty of the principal 
offices in the state. When, however, Mr. Pitt carried through the great 
measure of Union, he gave the Catholics reason to expect, that a removal 
of all disabilities would follow : not, indeed, as matter of right, but of 
grace and favor. When the time arrived, he found himself unable to 
redeem his tacit pledge. It was ascertained, that the removal of the 
Catholic disabilities involved many fundamental questions in the Consti- 
tution : in particular, the Bill of Rights, the Test and Corporation Acts ; 
and, in general, the stability of the whole Protestant Church establish- 
ment. It was, besides, discovered, when the measure was brought for- 
ward in the cabinet, that the king entertained scruples of conscience on 
the subject, in consequence of his oath at the coronation, " to maintain 
the Protestant religion established by law." Under these circumstances, 
Mr. Pitt stated that he had no alternative, but to resign his office. On 
the 10th of February, it was announced in Parliament, that the cabinet 
ministers held the seals only, until their successors were appointed ; and 
soon after, Mr. Pitt, Lord Grenville, Earl Spenser, Mr. Dundas and Mr. 
Windham resigned, and were succeeded by Mr. Addington, then Speaker 
of the House of Commons, as First Lord of the Treasury, Lord Hawkes- 
bury, as Minister of Foreign Affairs, and a new ministry taken entirely 
from the Tory party. 

It has long been the practice of the administrations of Great Britain, not 
to resign on the question which directly occasions their retirement, but to 
select some minor point, which is held forth to the world as the real ground 
of the change : and this custom is attended with the great advantage, of 
not implicating the crown or the government in a collision with either 

1801.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 151 

House of Parliament. From the fact, therefore, of Mr. Pitt's having so 
conspicuously designated the Catholic Question as the reason of his with- 
drawing, it is more than probable that this was not the true cause : or, 
that if it were, he caught at the impossibility of any further concessions to 
the Catholics of Ireland as a motive for resigning, to prevent the approach 
of other and more important questions which remained behind. There was 
no necessity for bringing forward the Catholic claims at that moment, nor 
any reason for breaking up a cabinet at a period of unparalleled public 
difficulty, merely because the king's scruples prevented them from being 
at that time conceded. But the question of peace or war was in a very 
different situation. Mr. Pitt could not disguise from himself that the coun- 
try was now involved in a contest, apparently endless, if the principles on 
which it had so long been conducted were rigidly adhered to. Hence, as 
it was possible, perhaps probable, that at no distant period England might 
be driven to an accommodation, to which arrangement the maintenance 
of his system would prove an obstacle, Mr. Pitt retired with the leading 
members of his cabinet and was succeeded by inferior adherents of his 
party, who, without departing altogether from his principles, might feel 
more at liberty to adapt them to the pressure of actual circumstances. 
In doing this, the English minister acted the part of a patriot. " He sacri- 
ficed himself," said Bignon, "to the good of his country and a general 
peace. He proved himself to be more than a great statesman a good 

But, though Mr. Pitt retired, his mantle fell on his successors, who, in 
their measures toward foreign States, evinced neither vacillation nor 
timidity. They provided, for both the army and navy, larger appropria- 
tions than had been made in any previous year since the commencement of 
the war : and they had need of all the resources of the nation, for the forces 
of the maritime league were extremely formidable. Their united strength 
amounted to twenty-four ships of the line roady for sea, which, in a few 
months, could with ease have been increased to fifty, besides twenty-five 
frigates ; a fleet which, combined with the Dutch ships, might have raised 
the blockade of the French harbors and enabled tho confederated powers 
to ride triumphant in th^ British Channel. As yet, however, the hostile 
fleets were not concentrated, and England resolved to strike a decisive blow 
in a vulnerable point, before her enemies could combine for her destruction. 

In the beginning of March, a squadron was assembled at Yarmouth, 
consisting of eighteen ships of the line, four frigates and a number of bomb 
vessels; in all, fifty-two sail. Sir Hyde Parker was placed at the head 
of the fleet, and Nelson received the appointment of his second in com- 
mand. The admiral set sail on the 12th of March. Soon after putting 
to sea, the Invincible struck on one of the sand banks of that dangerous 
coast, and sunk with a part of her crew. On the 27th, Sir Hyde arrived 
off Zealand and dispatched a letter to the governor of Cronenberg Castle, 
to inquire whether the fleet would be allowed to pass the Sound. The gov- 
ernor replied, that he could not allow a squadron to approach the guns of 
his fortress until the intentions of its commander were declared : and the 
British admiral rejoined, that he considered such answer equivalent to a de- 
claration of war. By the earnest advice of Nelson, it was resolved to force 
the passage, and the line was formed accordingly. Nelson's division led 
the van, Sir Hyde's followed in the centre, and the rear was commanded 
by admiral Graves. When the leading ships came within range,, the bat- 



ferics from the Danish shore opened their fire ; and, as the vessels were 
steered through the middle of the channel, they began to suffer consider- 
able injury ; but Nelson, observing that the batteries on the Swedish side 
of the Sound were silent, changed his direction, and, by running along 
that shore, was enabled to pass almost without the reach of the Danish 
guns. The passage occupied four hours ; and, about noonday, the fleet 
came to anchor off the harbor of Copenhagen. 

The garrison of this city consisted of ten thousand regular troops and a 
larger number of volunteers. Six ships of the line and eleven floating- 
batteries, besides a great number of smaller vessels, were moored in an 
external line to protect the entrance of the harbor, and those were flanked 
on either side by two islands called the Crowns, each mounting about sixty 
large guns. Within these powerful defences, four ships of the line were 
moored across the harbor, and a fort of thirty-six heavy guns had been 
constructed on a sand-bar to support them. The fire of these formidable 
out- works crossed with that of the batteries on the island of Amack and 
the citadel of Copenhagen ; and it seemed impossible that an attacking 
squadron could, for any length of time, endure so heavy and concentric a 
discharge. Besides, the channel, by which alone the harbor could be ap- 
proached, was extremely intricate and little known to the British pilots : 
the water on either side of the channel was shoal and intersected with bars, 
and the buoys that marked the true course had all been removed. Indeed, 
the danger of the navigation was so great, that a day and night were oc- 
cupied by the boats of the fleet in making soundings, and in endeavoring 
to replace the buoys. 

The approach to the Danish exterior line was covered by a large shoal 
called the Middle Ground, exactly in front of the harbor and distant from 
it three-quarters of a mile. As this shoal was impassable for ships of 
any magnitude, Nelson proposed to pass around it by the King's channel 
with a detachment of twelve ships, and lay them between the Danish line 
and the entrance of the harbor ; while Sir Hyde Parker, with the remain- 
der of the fleet, was to menace the Crown batteries and the four Danish 
ships on the inner line, and also lend his aid to such of Nelson's squadron 
as might come disabled out of the action. The small craft, headed by 
Captain Riou, led the way, accurately threading u dangerous and winding 
course between the island of Saltholm and the Middle Ground ; the larger 
ships followed, coasting along the outer edge of the shoal, doubled its far- 
ther extremity, and cast anchor just at sunset off Draco Point, not more 
than two miles from the right of the enemy's line. The signal to prepare 
for action was made, and the seamen passed the night in anxious expecta- 
tion. At daybreak on the 2nd of April, the wind was found to be fair, and 
all the captains received their final instructions. 

The action began at a few minutes past ten, and was general by 
eleven. Nine only of the line-of-battle ships could reach the stations 
allotted to them, three others having run aground; and, in consequence, 
Captain Riou, with his frigates, was compelled to confront the Crown 
batteries. The cannonade soon became tremendous ; more than two 
mousand guns poured forth their, thunder within a space not exceeding 
half a mile in breadth, and the fleets were wrapped in a huge mass of 
smoke and flame. The firing continued for three hours without any 
apparent diminution on either side, but at length, the discharges from the 
Danish fleet began to slacken; loud cheers from the English sailors 



announced the surrender of the enemy's ships, as they successively low- 
3red their flags ; and before two o'clock, the whole outer line of defence 
was either taken or destroyed. The loss of men in this desperate action 
was very severe ; that on the side of the British amounting to twelve 
hundred, and of the Danish, including prisoners, to six thousand. Of the 
/essels taken, one only, the Holstein, of sixty-four guns, was brought to 
England ; the remainder were so far injured, that it was deemed advis- 
able to sink them after their capture. A negotiation immediately fol- 
lowed the battle, which, though protracted by the Danish government 
on account of thefr fears of Russia, was at last concluded in an armistice 
for fourteen weeks, during which the armed Danish vessels were to remain 
m their present position, and the prisoners and wounded immediately 
sent ashore, and placed to the credit of England in case of a renewal 
of hostilities. 

On the same day that the British fleet forced the passage of the Sound, 
the Prussian cabinet made a formal demand on the regency of Hanover, 
to permit the occupation of the Electorate by the Prussians, and disband 
a part of their own forces. As this proposal was -supported by an army 
of twenty thousand men, the Hanoverian government was compelled to 
submit; and Hanover, Bremen and Hameln were occupied accordingly. 
At the same time, the Danes took possession of Hamburg and Lubec, so 
as to close the mouth of the Elbe against English commerce : and, on 
the other hand, a British squadron, under Admiral Duckworth, reduced 
all the Swedish and Danish islands in the West Indies. 

While everything thus announced the commencement of a war with 
the Northern powers, an event occurred which altered the whole aspect 
of affairs; this was, the death of the Emperor Paul, which took place on 
the 23rd of March. His son, Alexander, succeeded to the throne, and a 
total change of policy ensued on the part of the cabinet of St. Petersburg. 

The administration of Paul was a season of misrule and tyranny, 
owing in part to the impetuosity of his temper; and, of late, to a partial 
insanity, which was evinced in a variety of ways. The leading nobles 
of Russia, disapproving his policy, and foreseeing that it would bring 
permanent injury and disgrace on the Empire, formed a conspiracy to 
compel him to abdicate the crown, and the plot was so far communicated 
to Paul's two sons, the Grand-dukes Alexander and Constantine; but no 
intimation was given them that the conspiracy would endanger their 
father's life : the young princes, however, very reluctantly consented to 
the measure, although they were forced to admit its necessity; and 
Alexander, in particular, yielded to the arguments of the nobles, only 
on condition that no personal violence should be exerted in the proceed- 
ing. The nobles had, nevertheless, resolved on Paul's death,, as the 
only method of attaining security for the government; and they assas- 
sinated him at night in his bed-chamber. 

The new Emperor, on the day succeeding his elevation to the throne, 
proclaimed his intention of governing according to the maxims and system 
of his august grandmother, Catherine ; and one of his first acts was an 
order for the liberation of the British sailors, who had been taken from 
their ships and carried into prisons in the interior of the country : these 
men were therefore immediately conducted, at the public expense, to the 
ports from which they had severally been taken. At the same time, all 
prohibitions against the export of corn were removed; a measure of no 


small importance to the famishing population of the British Isles, and 
hardly less material to the well supplied proprietors of Russian grain. 
The young Emperor soon after wrote a letter, with his own hand, to the 
King of England, expressing, in the warmest terms, his desire to reestab 
lish the amicable relations of the two countries ; a declaration that was 
received with shouts of joy both in London and St. Petersburg. 

The British cabinet at once dispatched Lord St. Helens to the Russian 
Capital ; and, soon after his arrival, he signed a treaty, as glorious to 
England as it was confirmatory of the correctness of her views in regard 
to the right of search. By this convention it was provided, that the 
search "of merchant ships belonging to one of the contracting powers, 
and navigating under convoy of a ship-of-war of the same power, shall 
be exercised only by ships-of-*var of the belligerent party, and shall 
never extend to the fitters-out of privateers or other vessels which do not 
belong to the imperial or royal fleets of their majesties, but which their 
subjects may have fitted out for war; that the effects on board neutral 
ships shall be free, excepting contraband of war and enemies' property ; 
and it is agreed not to comprise in the number of the latter, the merchan- 
dise of the produce, growth or manufacture of the countries at war, which 
shall have been acquired by the subjects of the neutral power, and shall 
be transported for their account." The articles contraband were spe- 
cified to comprise all arms and materials of war, excepting such as were 
necessary for the defence of the ship and crew ; and a port was declared 
to be blockaded only when, by reason of the disposition and strength of 
the ships maintaining such blockade, there was danger in entering the 
harbor. By this treaty, the right of search was placed on its true footing, 
being divested of the accompaniments most likely to occasion irritation 
in neutral vessels, and not stipulated in favor of either party as a new 
right, but recognized as a privilege already existing, necessarily inherent 
by the practice of maritime states in every belligerent power, and sub- 
jected to such restraints as the enlarged experience of mankind had 
proved to be beneficial. 

Napoleon was greatly exasperated at the terms of this treaty, and sent 
Buroc to St. Petersburg to counteract the influence of Great Britain; 
but, though Alexander gave the French minister a flattering reception, 
lae could not be induced to waver in his policy. 

Sweden and Denmark were not expressly included in this convention, 
but they of necessity followed the example of Russia. On the 20th of 
May, therefore, the Danish government agreed to evacuate Hamburg, 
and restore the free navigation of the Elbe, and both Sweden and Den- 
mark raised the embargo: Great Britain adopted corresponding mea- 
sures; and Prussia took an early opportunity to withdraw her troops 
from Hanover. Thus was dissolved, in less than six months after its 
formation, the most formidable confederacy that then had ever been 
arrayed against the maritime power of England. 




THE Turkish army which Napoleon destroyed at Aboukir, was but an 
advanced guard of the force collected by the Sublime Porte to recover 
Egypt from the Republican arms. The main body, consisting of twenty 
thousand janizaries and regular troops, and twenty-five thousand irreg- 
ulars, arrived in the end of October, 1799, in the neighborhood of Gazah, 
on the confines of the Desert which separates Syria from Egypt. At the 
same time, a corps of eight thousand janizaries, under convoy of Sir 
Sidney Smith, arrived at the mouth of the Nile, to effect a diversion in 
that quarter. The leading division of this corps, four thousand strong, 
landed and took possession of the tower of Bogaz, where they began to 
fortify themselves ; but General Verdier, with one thousand French 
troops, routed them with a loss of five pieces of cannon and all their 

Kleber now turned his attention to the main army approaching from 
the Syrian desert. The check at the mouth of the Nile rendered the 
Grand Vizier well disposed toward negotiation ; and on the other hand, 
the declining numbers and desponding spirit of the French made them 
desirous, on almost any terms, to extricate themselves from a hopeless 
banishment. A convention was accordingly signed by the two parties 
on the 20th of January, 1800, which provided that the French soldiers 
should return to Europe with their arms and baggage in their own vessels 
or in those furnished by the Turkish authorities. But the British govern- 
ment had previously prohibited such a convention, as by their joint treaty 
with Turkey and Russia they were empowered to do, and sent orders to 
Lord Keith, commanding the English fleet in the Mediterranean, not to 
consent to any arrangement which should allow the French troops to 
return to Europe but as prisoners of war: and Kleber was advised of 
this after he had begun his preparations for embarking, in conformity to 
the agreement with the Turks. 

The French general, naturally exasperated at this interference of 
England, resolved to renew hostilities ; and, on the 20th of March, he 
reached and attacked the Turkish army in its intrenchments atHeliopolis. 
The disproportion of 'numbers between the two parties was very great ; 
but European discipline prevailed, as usual, over Asiatic valor, and the 
Turks were defeated with prodigious loss. This victory, though it availed 
nothing toward aiding the French to return home, was of consequence in 
enabling them to remain in peace on the banks of the Nile, a treaty to that 
effect having been concluded with the Turks, soon after the battle : buT 
Kleber reaped little personal benefit from this result, as he was assassi- 
nated by an Arab in the month of June. Menou succeeded to his com- 

As soon as the British government learned the new position assumed by 
the French troops in Egypt, they resolved on an expedition to expel them 
from tha* country, and dispatched Sir Rulph Abercromby with a large fleet 



and fifteen thousand men, to Alexandria. The leading frigate of the 
squadron made the signal for land, on the 1st of March, 1801, and on the 
following morning the whole fleet anchored in the Bay of Aboukir, on the 
same spot where Nelson had gained his great victory three years before. 
The state of the weather prevented for some days the landing of the troops ; 
but on the 8th, five thousand five hundred men embarked in one hun- 
dred and fifty boats for the shore. The French, to the number of about 
two thousand, were posted on the heights, in a semicircular line about a 
mile in length, supported on one side by twelve pieces of artillery, and on 
the other, by the castle of Aboukir. The moment the boats came within 
easy range of the French fire, a tremendous storm of grape opened upon 
them, ploughing the water in every direction, and scattering the transports 
over the waves. But the sailors plied their oars, and the troops steadily 
advanced in spite of every obstacle ; indeed, they moved with such pre- 
cision, that the prows of nearly all the first division struck the beach at 
the same moment. The troops sprang on shore, formed before they could 
6e charged by the enemy's cavalry, and moving rapidly up the ascent 
with fixed bayonets, carried the heights in the most gallant style. In an 
hour, the whole detachment was established on the French lines, and had 
taken eight of the twelve guns by which they were supported. 

Abercromby proceeded to strengthen his position and effect the land- 
ing of the remainder of his forces. Several partial actions ensued be- 
tween detachments of the two armies during the following days, and on 
the morning of the 21st, a general battle was fought in front of Alex- 
andria, in which the French were defeated with a loss of two thousand 
men, and Menou retreated to the heights of Nicopolis ; but the victory 
was dearly purchased by the English, who suffered an irreparable disas- 
ter in the death of Sir Ralph Abercromby. Some weeks now elapsed, 
in which both parties occupied themselves with reorganizing their forces. 
On the 9th of May, General Kfutchinson arrived at Alexandria, with a 
reenforcement of three thousand fresh troops, and assumed command of 
the British army. He immediately took the offensive, and, pressing on 
the French division under Belliard, compelled them to retreat before him, 
until he finally drove them into Cairo, and laid siege to that city, on the 
20th of May. On the following day, the French commander proposed a 
capitulation, stipulating that the troops, consisting of thirteen thousand 
six hundred and seventy two men, with their arms, artillery and baggage, 
should be conveyed to France. This was acceded to, and the English 
took possession of Cairo. 

When Menou, who was at Alexandria with the other division of the 
French army, amounting to ten thousand men, heard of this capitulation, he 
professed himself highly incensed, and avowed his determination to die under 
the ruins of Alexandria, rather than surrender. But the British troops, 
on the 17th of August, laid siege to that place, and Menou soon forgot hb 
bold resolution : for, on the 31st, he agreeed to evacuate the town on con- 
dition of being transported to France with his men, arms, baggage, and ten 
pieces of cannon. The military results of this conquest were very great. 
Three hundred and twelve pieces of cannon, chiefly brass, were found on 
the works of Alexandria, besides seventy-seven on board the ships of war. 
The magazines contained one hundred and ninety-five thousand pounds of 
powder and fourteen thousand gun-cartridges. The total number of troops 
who capitulated in Egypt, was nearly twenty-four thousand of the tried 


veterans of France, who thus yielded to an English force considerably 
inferior to their own. 

Although Napoleon had now lost his footing in Egypt, he did not despair 
of regaining it, and made several abortive attempts to take possession of 
Alexandria, by fleets dispatched for that purpose, which accomplished no- 
thing but escapes through the British squadron in the Mediterranean, and 
returned home without having reached Alexandria. Napoleon, exasperated 
at these failures, ordered a new expedition to be prepared of fifteen ships 
of the line, twelve of which, six Spanish and six French, were to unite at 
Cadiz, and be joined by Admiral Linois with three more from Toulon. 
The British government immediately dispatched Sir James Saumarez, 
with seven ships of the line and two frigates, to resume the blockade of 
Cadiz ; and he had hardly arrived off that harbor, when he learned that 
Admiral Linois was approaching from the Mediterranean with three ships 
of the line, and one frigate. The English admiral immediately put to 
sea in search of this squadron, when Linois retreated into Algesiraz Bay, 
and took shelter under its powerful batteries. Sir James followed him and 
stood into the bay, but the wind soon failing, the Hannibal grounded on a 
shoal, in such a position as to be exposed to the fire both of the shore bat- 
teries and the French ships ; and as the other vessels were unable to ren- 
der her any assistance, they withdrew and left her to her fate. She made 
an honorable defence, but soon struck her colors. 

Sir James now repaired to Gibraltar, refitted and recruited his squad- 
ron, and, on the morning of July 12th, set sail again, to avenge his loss 
and discomfiture ; and, in the mean time, six ships of the line and three 
frigates, from Cadiz, had joined the French fleet in Algesiraz Bay, and 
the united squadrons were now on their return to Cadiz with their prize, 
the Hannibal, in tow. As soon as the British fleet, consisting of but five 
ships of the line, came in sight of the French and Spanish vessels, the 
latter, though comprising together nine line-of-battle ships, including two 
three deckers, made sail to escape toward Cadiz, leaving the Hannibal to 
drop astern. The British gave chase, and at eleven o'clock at night, the 
Superb opened its fire on the Real Carlos, of one hundred and twelve 
guns, which ship, after, three broadsides, was discovered to be OR fire. 
Deeming this gigantic adversary so far disabled that she must soon fall 
into the hands of the vessels behind, the commander of the Superb pressed 
on, and in half an hour overtook and captured the St. Antoine, of seventy- 
four guns. The Caesar and Venerable came up in succession, and the 
chase was continued through the night, in the midst of a tempestuous gale. 
But while the British sailors were making every effort to overtake the 
retreating ships, a terrible catastrophe happened to the enemy. The 
Superb, after having disabled the Real Carlos, passed on and poured a 
broadside into the San Hermenigeldo, also of one hundred and twelve 
guns, and she thence proceeded to the attack of other vessels still farther 
advanced. In the darkness of the night, the commanders of these two 
Spanish three-deckers, mutually mistaking each other for an enemy, 
joined in a close action ; the violence of the wind spread the flames from 
one to the other, the heavens were illuminated by the conflagration, and 
at midnight they both blew up with a tremendous explosion. Out of the 
two thousand men composing their crews, two hundred and fifty were saved 
by the English boats, the remainder perished. 

When morning dawned, the fleets were very much scattered ; and 


eventually both drew off without prizes ; but it was a triumph to the 
British to have engaged nearly double their numbers, and escape with all 
their vessels ; while the combined fleet suffered the destruction of two of 
its largest ships. 

About this time, a treaty between France and Spain was announced, 
having for its object " to compel the court of Lisbon to separate itself from 
its alliance with Great Britain, and cede, until the conclusion of a general 
peace, a fourth part of its territory to the French and Spanish forces." In 
this extremity, Portugal appealed for aid to Great Britain ; but, as that 
power could not then grant it, Portugal was forced to submit ; she pur- 
chased a treaty with her powerful neighbors by ceding to France one half 
of Guiana, paying twenty millions of francs for the support of the French 
troops, confirming Olivenza with its territory to Spain, and closing her 
ports against all. English ships, whether of war or of commerce. 

When Napoleon found himself relieved by the treaty of Luneville from 
all apprehension of a struggle with the Continental powers, he bent his 
attention to the shores of Great Britain, and made great preparation for 
invading that country : while England' concentrated her resources for a 
general defence of the coast. But it was soon apparent that these efforts, 
on both sides, were a mere cover to the intentions of the respective cabi- 
nets ; for while the shores of the Channel were covered with boats and 
transports on the one hand, and fleets of armed ships on the other, couriers 
passed incessantly to and fro with dispatches having reference to a gen- 
eral peace, preliminaries for which were eventually signed, on the 1st of 
October, 1801. By these preliminary articles it was agreed, that hostili- 
ties between the contracting parties should immediately cease by land and 
sea ; that Great Britain should restore its colonial acquisitions in every 
part of the world ; Ceylon in the East, and Trinidad in the West Indies, 
alone excepted : that Egypt should be restored to the Porte, Malta and its 
dependencies to the order of St. John of Jerusalem, the Cape of Good 
Hope to Holland ; the integrity of Portugal was to be guaranteed, the 
harbors of the Roman and Neapolitan states evacuated by the French, and 
Porto Ferrajo by the English forces. 

In the same year, treaties were concluded between France and Turkey, 
France and Bavaria, France and America, France and Algiers, and 
France and Russia. On the 27th of March, 1802, the definitive treaty 
with England was signed at Amiens ; its conditions varied in no essential 
particular from the preliminaries signed at London, in October, 1801. 

A feeling of joy overspread all Europe when intelligence of the treaty 
of Amiens was promulgated : the population of Paris forgot, in the splen- 
dor of military pageantry, the calamities of the Revolution, and visitors 
Crom other countries flocked to the French metropolis to examine the locali- 
ties where such frightful scenes had been enacted, and to see the several 
heroes of the mighty drama. 

But the active and indefatigable mind of Napoleon took no respite du- 
ring this period of general relaxation. Thinking nothing done while aught 
remained to do, he no sooner attained the highest point of military glory, 
f han he turned his thoughts to the restoration of the naval power of France ; 
and as the recovery of the French colonies promised the only means that 
could be relied on for the permanent support of marine forces, he projected 
an expedition for the recapturing of St. Domingo, which had freed itself 
from the French yoke by a bloody insurrection during the misrule of the 
.National Assembly. 

1801.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 159 

The forces collected by Napoleon for this purpose were commensurate 
to the importance of the undertaking : thirty-five ships of the line, twenty, 
one frigates and eighty smaller vessels, having also on board twenty-one 
thousand land troops, might have been deemed a sufficiently powerful 
armament to subjugate a rival kingdom, rather than one destined to reduce 
a distant colonial settlement. The fleet was commanded by Villaret 
Joyeuse ; the army, by Le Clerc, Napoleon's brother-in-law ; and the 
troops consisted, for the most part, of the veterans of Hohenlinden, accom- 
panied by their own officers, Richepanse, Rochambeau, and others. The 
several detachments of the fleet sailed simultaneously from Brest, L' Ori- 
ent and Rochefort, on the 14th of December ; and these were followed by 
other vessels from Cadiz, Havre and Holland with additional troops, which 
eventually raised the whole land force to thirty-five thousand men. So 
completely were the people of St. Domingo at fault as to the destination 
of this armament, that, but for its detention for fifteen days in the Bay of 
Biscay, Toussaint, the negro general-in-chief of the new government, 
would have been taken entirely by surprise by the arrival of the fleet off 
the island, in the beginning of February. As it chanced, however, he 
learned from an American vessel that a large number of French ships of 
war had appeared in the southern latitudes ; and, instantly divining their 
object, he made all possible preparation for defence. 

Toussaint's entire military force, over the island, did not exceed 
twenty thousand men, hence, he could hope nothing from pitched battles 
with the conquerors of Austria; he therefore adopted a line of defence 
exactly conformable to his position. Orders were immediately given for 
removing everything valuable from Cape Town, where the French were 
expected to land, and to prepare combustibles for destroying the city by 
fire, the moment it was evacuated. These orders were faithfully execu- 
ted. One division of the French troops disembarked on the 4th of Feb- 
ruary ; during that night, the flames burst out in every direction, and in 
the morning, of eight hundred houses, but sixty remained standing, and 
all the stores and provisions that could not be removed were destroyed 
with the buildings that contained them : a noble act of devotion on the 
part of the negroes, and one of sinister import to the invading army. 

The French troops soon overran and took possession of all the plains 
and seacoast of the island, driving the negro bands into the impracticable 
mountains and woods in the centre : but this apparent triumph was the 
result of the system of defence adopted by Toussaint, to cut off supplies 
from the French, and harass them with an incessant guerilla warfare, 
which rendered their discipline and experience unavailing. This state 
of things continued for three months, during which numberless actions 
took place, and in many, the French suffered severe loss ; but both par- 
ties at length becoming exhausted, a general pacification was agreed 
upon, on the 5th of May, 1802; when the negroes submitted to the 
government of the invaders, surrendered their arms and disbanded their 
forces. But they soon found reason to repent their reliance on the faith 
of Napoleon ; for, in compliance with his original instructions, Toussaint 
was treacherously arrested and transported to France ; and this act was 
followed by a system of oppression which *oon forced the negroes into 

The situation of the French, in turn, became critical. Pestilence and 
the sword had reduced their numbers to thirteen thousand men in all : and 



of these, five thousand were in the hospitals, and Le Clerc himself, with 
several of his best officers, had fallen victims to the clfmate. Rocham- 
beau took command after the death of Le Clerc ; but the increasing force 
and success of the negroes decimated his troops, and in February, 1803, 
he found himself reduced to extremity. When matters were in this con- 
dition, a finishing blow was given to the hopes of the French army, by 
the rupture of the treaty of Amiens, and renewal of hostilities between 
France and Great Britain. The negroes, supplied with arms and ammu- 
nition by the English cruisers, became at all points irresistible, and ihe 
invaders were forced to capitulate. 

Since the expulsion of the French from the island, St. Domingo has 
been nominally independent ; but slavery is far from being abolished 
there, and the condition of the people is anything but meliorated by the 
change. The industrious habits of the people and the flourishing aspect 
of the island have disappeared; the agricultural opulence of its fields has 
vanished ; and, from being the greatest exporting island in the West In- 
dies, it has ceased to raise sugar at all. In 1789, the population of St. 
Domingo was six hundred thousand, and its export of sugar amounted to 
six hundred and seventy-two millions of pounds weight : in 1832, its popu- 
lation was two hundred and eighty thousand, and its export of sugar, not 
one pound. 

But, though Napoleon was thus foiled in his attempts to establish colo- 
nial dependencies, he did not limit his ambition to this achievement. 
Simultaneously with the expedition to St. Domingo, he began to operate 
on the field of Europe, and the peace of Amiens was hardly concluded, 
when his conduct gave unequivocal proof that he was resolved to be fet- 
tered treaties, and that, to those who did not choose to submit to his 
authority, no alternative remained but the sword. 

By the llth article of the treaty of Luneville, it had been provided that 
" the contracting parties shall mutually guarantee the independence of 
the Batavian, Helvetian, Cis-Alpine and Ligurian republics, and the right 
of the people who inhabit them to adopt whatever form of government they 
may think fit." The allies, by this clause, of course understood inde- 
pendence in its true sense; that is, a liberation of these republics from 
the influence of France : but it soon appeared that Napoleon attached a 
very different meaning to the word, and that he intended to establish con- 
stitutions in them all which should subject them absolutely to his power. 
He made his first demonstration on Holland, where, on the 17th of 
September, the French ambassador sent a Constitution, completely drawn 
up, to the Directory, with an intimation that they had nothing to do but 
to affix to it the seal ,pf their approbation ; and, on the same day, it was 
published to the nation, the Directory taking for granted that it would be 
approved. The Dutch Legislature, however, were not prepared for this 
degradation ; and the last act of their political existence was as honorable 
as, in the end, it proved unavailing : they decreed the suppression of the 
illegal acts of the Directory, and on the 18th their hall was cleared and 
their doors closed by French bayonets. A new Constitution was then pub- 
lished by the pliant Directory, alike without the knowledge or concurrence 
of the people, although it assimilated to their wishes more nearly than the 
democratic institutions which preceded it. The Directory went through 
the form of submitting this instrument to the people ; and of four hundred 
and sixteen thousand four hundred and nineteen citizens, having a right 

1802.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 161 

to vote, fifty-two thousand two hundred and nineteen rejected it. The 
fact that a great majority of the whole declined to vote at all, was as- 
sumed to be favorable to the change, and the new government was there- 
fore solemn.y proclaimed. The conduct of the Dutch on this occasion, 
affords a striking proof of the impossibility of eradicating, by external 
violence, the institutions which have grown with the growth and strength- 
ened with the strength of a free people. In vain did the armies of France 
subdue them, and force upon them democratic forms of government with 
the loud applause of the indigent rabble in power. The great mass of 
the inhabitants and nearly all the proprietors withdrew from public situa- 
tions, and took no share in the changes imposed on their country. In the 
seclusion of private life, they retained the habits, the affections and the 
religious observances of .their forefathers ; and their children were nur- 
tured in these patriotic feelings, untainted by the revolutionary passions 
which agitated the surrounding states. 

This was followed by a similar revolution in the Cis- Alpine Republic, 
and a change of its name to the Italian Republic ; after which, Piedmont 
was formally annexed to France. These acquisitions, formidable in them- 
selves, became doubly so by the means which Napoleon adopted to render 
them permanent conquests. He employed a corps of engineers and an 
immense number of workmen to construct the celebrated roads over Mont 
Cenis, Mont Genevre and the Simplon ; and the Alps soon ceased to pre- 
sent any obstacle to an invading army. The government of Switzerland, 
too, again underwent a radical change, and a Constitution more conform- 
able to Napoleon's modified views of republicanism was forced on the 
inhabitants of that devoted country. 

While the continent of Europe was agitated by these events, England 
enjoyed the blessings and the tranquillity of peace. During the brief 
interval of national repose that was vouchsafed to her, the opening of the 
European ports brought into her harbors an unlimited commerce, and 
rendered her seaports the emporium of the civilized world. Her exports 
and imports rapidly increased ; the cessation of the income-tax conferred 
comparative affluence on the middling classes ; agriculture, sustained 
by continued high prices, shared in the general prosperity ; the sinking 
fund, relieved in some degree from the counteracting influence of annual 
loans, attracted universal attention ; while the revenue, under the influ- 
ence of so many favorable circumstances, steadily augmented, and the 
national exigencies were easily provided for, without any addition tc 
the burdens of the people. So wide-spread was the enthusiasm, occa 
sioned by this bright gleam of prosperity, even sagacious, practical men, 
were carried away by the delusion ; and the only apprehension expressed 
by the moneyed classes was, that the sinking fund would extinguish the 
national debt too rapidly, and capital, left without the means of secure 
investment, would be exposed to the risk and uncertainty of foreign 

But these flattering prospects were of short duration. Independent of 
the increasing jealousy with which the British government beheld the 
continental encroachments of Napoleon, and which rapidly communi- 
cated itself to all classes of the English people, several causes of irrita- 
tion grew up between the rival governments, which first weakened, and 
finally destroyed, the good understanding between them. 

The first of these subjects of irritation, was the asperity with which the 
government and acts of the First Consul were canvassed in the English 


newspapers. To Napoleon, who was accustomed only to the voice of 
adulation, and read nothing in the enslaved journals of his own country 
but graceful flattery, these diatribes were in the highest degree painful ; 
and not the less so, because the charges they contained in regard to his 
ambitious policy and foreign aggressions, were too true to be refuted. 
He, therefore, caused his minister at London to remonstrate against these 
attacks, and concluded by formally soliciting, " First, that the English 
government should prohibit the unbecoming and seditious publications 
with which the newspapers in England are filled ; secondly, that the 
individuals specified in the annexed list, be sent out of Jersey ; thirdly, 
that Georges and his adherents be transported to Canada ; fourthly, that 
it be recommended to the princes of the House of Bourbon, resident in 
Great Britain, to repair to Warsaw ; and, fifthly, that such emigrants as 
still think proper to wear the orders and decorations of the ancient gov- 
ernment of France, be required to quit the territories of the British 

The English government replied to this extraordinary requisition in 
dignified, but courteous language, referring in detail to each specifica- 
tion, and concluding thus : " His majesty is sincerely disposed to adopt 
every measure for the preservation of peace, which is consistent with the 
honor and independence of the country, and the security of its laws and 
Constitution. But the French government must have formed a most 
erroneous judgment of the disposition of the British nation, and the char- 
acter of its government, if they have been taught to expect that any 
representation of a foreign power, will ever induce them to consent to a 
violation of those rights on which the liberties of the people of this country 
are founded." 

No further diplomatic correspondence took place on this subject; but 
the war of the journals continued with redoubled vehemence, and several 
replies of a hostile character appeared in the Moniteur, bearing evident 
marks of Napoleon's composition. The French incessantly urged the 
execution of "the treaty of Amiens, the whole treaty of Amiens, and 
nothing but the treaty of Amiens :" they loudly complained that the 
British government had not evacuated Alexandria, Malta, and the Cape 
of Good Hope, as stipulated in that instrument ; and declared that the 
French people would ever remain in the attitude of Minerva, with a hel- 
met on her head, and a spear in her hand. The English replied, that 
the strides made by France over Continental Europe since the general 
pacification, and her menacing conduct toward the British possessions, 
were inconsistent with any intention of preserving peace, and rendered it 
indispensable that the securities held by them for their own independ- 
ence, should not be relinquished. This recriminating warfare was con- 
tinued with equal zeal on both sides of the Channel ; loud and fierce 
defiances were exchanged, and it soon became manifest, not less from the 
temper of the people than the relations of their governments, that the 
contest must, be decided by the sword. 

This view of the case was farther confirmed by an extraordinary scene 
between Napoleon and Lord Whitworth. the English ambassador at Paris, 
on the 21st of February, 1803 ; in which Napoleon, with great vehe- 
mence, insisted on the evacuation of Egypt and Malta, complained of the 
abuse of the English newspapers, and threatened to renew hostilities 
. immediately, unless his grounds of complaint were removed. 

The British government, plainly foreseeing the result, resolved to 


anticipate it, and made speedy preparations for an outbreak. Parlia- 
ment sustained the measures of the ministry by a unanimous vote ; the 
militia was called out; ten thousand additional men were ordered for 
the navy ; Lord Nelson was put in command of the Mediterranean fleet; 
Sir Sidney Smith received orders to put to sea with a squadron of obser- 
vation ; and England resumed her arms with a degree of enthusiasm 
exceeding that with which she had laid them aside. 

These movements led to a second and still more violent ebullition on 
the part of the First Consul. In a public court at the Tuileries, held a 
few days after, he addressed Lord Whitworth in the following terms: 
" So, you are determined to go to war ! We have already fought for fif- 
teen years; I suppose you wish to fight for fifteen years more. The 
English wish for war; but if they are the first to draw the sword, I will 
be the last to return it to the scabbard. They have no respect for trea- 
ties. Henceforth, treaties must be shrouded in black crape. Wherefore 
these armaments ? Against whom are these measures of precaution ? I 
have not a single ship of the line in the harbors of France : but if you 
arm, I shall arm also. If you insist on fighting, I, too. shall fight. You 
may destroy France, but you can never intimidate her. If you would 
live on terms of good understanding with us, you must respect treaties. 
Wo to those who violate them ! they must answer for the consequences 
to all Europe." This violent harangue, rendered still more emphatic 
by the impassioned gestures with which it was accompanied, induced the 
English ambassador to suppose that the First Consul would so far forget 
his dignity as to strike him; and he was deliberating with himself as to 
what he would do, in the event of such an insult's being offered to the 
nation he represented, when Napoleon retired, and delivered the assem- 
bled and astonished ambassadors of Europe from the pain they experi- 
enced at witnessing so remarkable a scene. 

The British government contented itself with replying to these intem- 
perate sallies on the part of the First Consul, by recapitulating the mutual 
obligations of the treaty, and avowing a readiness to execute every 
article to the letter, the moment they were satisfied of similar intentions 
on the part of France. The negotiations were protracted for two months 
longer; but, on the 12th of May, Lord Whitworth, finding all hope of 
arrangement at an end, demanded and received his passports: on the 
16th, letters of marque were issued by the British government; and the 
war recommenced with increased animosity. 

The declaration of war was followed by an act on the part of the First 
Consul, as unnecessary as it was barbarous; and which contributed 
more, perhaps, than any other circumstance, to produce that strong feel- 
ing of personal hatred toward Napoleon which pervaded all classes of 
the English people during the remainder of the contest. Two French 
vessels had been captured, under the English letters of marque, in the 
Bay of Audierne ; and the First Consul made this a pretext for ordering 
the arrest of all the British subjects, then travelling in France, between 
the ages of eighteen and sixty years. Under this savage decree, more 
than ten thousand innocent persons, who had repaired to France in pur- 
suit of business, science or amusement, were at once thrown into prison ; 
whence great numbers of them were not liberated until the invasion of 
the allies, in 1814. This severity was the more unpardonable, as the 
minister of Foreign Affairs had, a few days before, given the English t 


residents at Paris assurances, that they should be permitted to leave the 
kingdom without molestation ; and many had, in consequence, declined to 
avail themselves of the means of escape when they were in their power. 




BEFORE proceeding to the history of the war, thus unhappily renewed, 
it is necessary to take a retrospective view of the internal affairs of 

When Napoleon seized the reins of power in that country, he found 
the institutions of civilization, and the bonds of society, dissolved to an 
extent of which the history of the world affords no previous example. 
Not only had the throne been overturned, the nobles exiled, the landed 
estates confiscated, and the aristocracy destroyed ; but the institutions of 
religion, law, commerce and education, were totally annihilated. Ever 
the establishments of charity had shared in the general wreck ; the mon 
astery no longer dispensed its munificence to the poor, and the doors oi 
the hospitals were closed against the indigent sick and wounded. Tr 
restore that which the insanity of preceding years had overthrown, wa: 
the task that awaited the First Consul, and the success of his efforts is a 
far prouder monument to his memory than all the victories he achieved. 
He began at the outset, cautiously but firmly, to coerce the democratic 
spirit of the people, and to reconstruct those classes and distinctions in 
society, which he well knew were the indispensable bulwarks of a throne. 

Those who reproach Napoleon for establishing a despotic government, 
would do well to show how he could have formed a counterpoise to 
democratic ambition, or a check on regal oppression, out of the represen- 
tatives of a community whence the superior classes of society had been 
violently torn : how the turbulent passions of a republican populace could 
have been moulded into habitual subjection to a legislature, distinguished 
in no manner from themselves; and to a body of titled senators destitute 
of wealth, consideration and hereditary rank : how a constitutional throne 
could have existed without any support from the altar, or any foundation 
in the religious feelings of its subjects: and how a proud and victorious 
army could have been taught that respect for the majesty of the Law, 
which is the invaluable growth of centuries of order, but which the suc- 
cessive overthrow of so many previous governments in France had effect- 
ually destroyed. After its patricians had been cut off by the civil wars 
of Sylla and Marius, Rome necessarily sunk under the despotic rule of 
the emperors. When Constantine founded a second Rome on the shores 
of the Bosphorus, he saw that it was too late to restore the balanced Con 
stitution of the ancient Republic. On Napoleon's accession to the con- 
sular throne, he found the vacancies in the French aristocracy still 
greater ; and the only remaining means of righting the scale, was to cast 
into it the weight of the sword. 

1801.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 165 

One of Naporeon's first measures, was a decree against the Jacobins, 
toward whom he entertained an inextinguishable hatred. The pretext 
for this proceeding was furnished by an unsuccessful attempt against his 
life, by means of what was called "the infernal machine." He was 
going in his carriage from the Tuileries to the opera, and in passing 
through the Rue St. Nicaise, the coachman found that narrow street 
nearly obstructed by an overturned chariot; the man, however, had the 
address to make his way through, and drive on without stopping. He 
had hardly passed, when a terrible explosion took place in the rear, 
which broke the windows of the Consul's carriage, struck down the last 
man of the guard, killed eight persons and wounded twenty-eight, besides 
doing great injury to forty-six adjoining houses. Napoleon proceeded to 
the opera, where he was received with indescribable enthusiasm; and 
on his return to the Tuileries, a crowd of public functionaries from every 
part of Paris waited on him, to offer their congratulations. He inter- 
rupted them by saying, that the plot was the work of his worst enemies, 
the Jacobins ; and, in a vehement harangue, he demanded the immediate 
infliction of an exemplary punishment on the leaders of that party. 
Truguet had the courage to suggest, that there were other guilty persons 
in France besides the Jacobins ; and that, as in this particular instance 
there was yet no proof against any one, it would be well to stay such 
summary proceedings. Napoleon, however, was not so to be thwarted: 
he insisted on the justness of his suspicions; and although, while the dis- 
cussion was in progress, he received certain information, through Fouehe, 
that the real perpetrators of the crime were some Royalists of the Chouan 
bands, he forced the Senate to pass a decree of immediate transportation, 
without a form of trial, against no less than one hundred and thirty 
Jacobins, among whom were many of those implicated in the worst ex- 
cesses of the Reign of Terror. Within a month from this time, Saint 
Regent and Carbon, who were actually concerned in the conspiracy, 
were brought to trial, condemned and executed. 

In order to restore gradually the succession of ranks in society, Napo- 
leon soon resolved to create an order of nobility, under the title of the 
Legion of Honor ; and a motion for its establishment was brought before 
the Council of State in May, 1801. It met, both there and elsewhere, an 
unexpected degree of opposition, from its evident tendency to counteract 
the levelling principles of the Revolution ; and Napoleon's utmost influ- 
ence could obtain for it but a feeble majority in the several houses of the 
national legislature. It was, nevertheless, carried into execution, with 
all those details of pomp and ceremony that are so powerful with the 
multitude. The inauguration of the dignitaries of the order took place, 
with great magnificence, in the church of the Hotel des Invalides ; and 
the decorations soon began to be eagerly coveted by a people, whose pas- 
sion for individual distinction had been a secret cause of the Revolution 
itself. The event proved that Napoleon had rightly appreciated the true 
character of the people. The leading object in the Revolution was the 
extinction of castes, not of ranks ; equality of rights, and not of classes; 
the abolition of hereditary, not personal distinction. But an institution 
which conferred lustre on individuals, and not on families, and led to no 
hereditary privileges, was found in practice to be so far from running 
counter to the popular feeling, that it precisely coincided with it. Ac- 
cordingly, the Legion of Honor, which gradually extended so as to 


embrace two thousand persons of the greatest eminence in every depart, 
ment, both civil and military, in France, became highly useful and 

Another measure, and one of the greatest importance, was next brought 
forward : this was, the reestablishment of the Catholic religion in France, 
and the renewing of those connexions with the pope which had been 
violently broken during the fury of the Revolution. Napoleon, himself, 
so far from being a fanatic, was even a disbeliever in religion ; but he 
was too sagacious not to perceive, that the destruction of its hallowed 
institutions was wholly inconsistent with the prosperity of a regular 
government; and he therefore commenced a negotiation with the pope 
for reviving them. This measure, too, encountered great opposition in 
the legislature ; but k was eventually carried. Ten archbishops and 
fifty bishops were established ; the former with a salary of fifteen thou- 
sand, and the latter with one of ten thousand francs each: and it was 
provided, that there should be a parish priest in every district of a justice 
of the peace, with as many additional ministers as might be deemed 
necessary. The bishops and archbishops were to be appointed by the 
First Consul, and these functionaries were to nominate the parish priests 
and inferior clergy. It is remarkable, that some of the most distinguished 
of the French generals, such as Moreau, Lannes, Oudinot, Victor and 
others, openly expressed their disapprobation of this proceeding. 

Napoleon, however, remained firm; despite all opposition and the loud 
discontent of the capital ; the reestablishment of public worship was an- 
nounced by a proclamation of the three Consuls ; and, on the llth of April, 
1802, a grand religious ceremony took place, in honor of the occasion, in 
the cathedral of Notre Dame. The result of this measure fully vindi- 
cated Napoleon's judgment in its adoption ; the entire population of the 
rural departments beheld the change with unbounded satisfaction and 
delight, and the different sovereigns of Europe freely avowed their gratifi- 
cation at an event so auspicious to the general benefit of mankind. 

On the 29th of April, a general amnesty was published in favor of 
exiles and emigrants, who had fled or been driven from their homes, during 
the Revolution ; and, in consequence, more than a hundred thousand per- 
sons returned to their native country ; though, for the most part, they were 
in great destitution from the previous confiscation of their estates. In the 
month of May, a system of public instruction was introduced on a scale 
of comparative liberality ; but it is observable, that all tuition of a reli- 
gious character was carefully avoided in the decree. On the 8th of the 
same month, the obsequious legislature extended the time of Napoleon's 
consulship ten years beyond the term for which he was originally ap- 
pointed : an acquisition of power, which, though far short of his ambitious 
desires, was yet an important step toward their final accomplishment. In 
reply to the address of the Senate which announced this decree, Napoleon 
suggested, that he would prefer to have it sanctioned by the voice of the 
people : and the Council of State, improving on the hint, and without ask- 
ing the concurrence of the other branches of the legislature, forthwith 
submitted to the people this question : " Shall Napoleon Bonaparte be 
Consul for life ?" Registers were opened in every commune to receive 
the votes of the citizens, and, on the 2nd of August, it was officially 
announced, that of three millions, five hundred and fifty-seven thousand, 
eight hundred and eighty-five citizens who voted, three millions, three 

1802.1 HIS TORY OF EUROPE. ,.*7 

hundred and sixty-eight thousand, two hundred and fifty-nine gave their 
suffrages in the affirmative. This is one of the most remarkable facts 
in the history of the Revolution, and is singularly descriptive of that 
longing after repose which uniformly succeeds revolutionary convulsions, 
and so generally renders them the preludes to despotic power. The rapid 
rise of the public funds, demonstrated that this feeling was common among 
the holders of property in France. The price of these securities ad- 
vanced, with every addition to the authority of the successful general : it 
rose from *8 to -16, when he seized the helm of state ; and after the con- 
sulship for life was proclaimed, it reached -52. 

Great changes in the Constitution followed this alteration in the char- 
acter of the executive authority. The Tribunate was reduced from one 
hundred, to fifty members ; an important diminution, as it was a prelude 
to the total extinction of that body ; and it now so completely annihilated 
its remnant of freedom of debate, as to render it an insignificant obstacle 
to the despotic tendency of the government. The Legislative Body was 
reduced to two hundred and fifty-eight members, and separated into five 
divisions, one of which was annually renewed. The Senate was invested 
with the power to dissolve the Legislative Body and the Tribunate, to 
declare particular departments out of the pale of the Constitution, and to 
modify the fundamental principles of the Republic. The First Consul 
was empowered to nominate his successor, and pardon offences. Thus, in 
all but its name, the government had already become a despotic monarchy. 

A few days after the Constitution was published, Napoleon presided 
at the Senate, and received the congratulations of the public authorities, 
and the foreign ambassadors, on his investiture for life. The soldiers 
formed a double line from the Tuileries to the Luxembourg ; the First 
Consul rode thither in a magnificent chariot, drawn by eight horses, 
the two other consuls followed in carriages with six horses ; and they 
were succeeded by a splendid cortege of domestic and foreign officers. 
The gorgeous appearance of the procession captivated the Parisian mul- 
titude, who rent the air with their shouts, and manifested as much joy at 
the restoration of the monarchy, as they not long before had done at its 

While Napoleon was pursuing his projects for the establishment of a 
hereditary dynasty in his own family, he caused a communication to be 
made to the Count de Lille, afterward Louis XVIII., then residing under 
the protection of the Prussian king at Koningsberg, by which, in the event 
of the Count's renouncing all right to the French throne in his favor, 
Bonaparte offered to provide for him a principality, with an ample revenue 
in Italy. But Louis declined this proposal with great dignity, concluding 
his reply in these words : " I know not the intentions of God toward my 
family or myself, but I know the obligations which He has imposed on me. 
As a Christian, I will discharge the duties which religion prescribes till 
my latest breath ; as a son of St. Louis, I will make myself respected 
even in fetters ; and as a successor of Francois I., I will ever be able to. 
say with him, ' All is lost except our honor.' " 

Napoleon, in this year, commenced the formation of a Civil Code, in 
which the heterogeneous laws of the monarchy and Republic were wrought 
to a consistent shape. To reform a system of law without destroying it, 
is one of the most difficult tasks in political improvement, and one that 
perhaps requires, more than any other change, a union of practical know- 



ledge vvith the desire for social melioration. To retain statutes as they 
are, without ever modifying them according to the progress of society, is 
to imike them clash with the great innovator, Time, and often become 
pernicious in their operation : to new-model them in conformity to the 
wishes of an excited people, is almost certainly to incur unforeseen and 
irremediable evils. Nothing is more easy than to point out defects in 
established laws, because their inconvenience is felt and proved : and 
nothing is more difficult than to propose safe or expedient remedies, be- 
jause almost no foresight is competent to estimate the ultimate effects 
which changes may produce. The clearest proof of the wisdom with 
which the Code of Napoleon was formed, is found in the fact, that it has 
not only survived the Empire which gave it birth, but continues, under 
new dynasties and different forms of government, to regulate the decisions 
of many nations who were leagued to bring about the overthrow of its 
author. Napoleon has said that his fame, in the eyes of posterity, would 
rest more on the Code which bore his name, than on all his military vic- 
tories ; and its permanent establishment, as the basis of the jurisprudence 
of half of Europe, has already proved the truth of the prophecy. 

The law of succession, as established by the preceding governments of 
France, was too firmly rooted in the affections or prejudices of the people 
to be disturbed, even by the power of the First Consul ; and its effects are 
yet destined to be more important than those of almost any other change 
brought about by the Revolution. Napoleon, therefore, in this instance 
confirmed what he could not alter. By the statute in question, the right 
of primogeniture and the distinction between personal and real estate were 
taken away, and inheritance of every sort was divided in equal portions 
among those standing in an equal degree of consanguinity to a person 
deceased. This indefeasible right of children to their parents' estates 
was fixed at one half, if but one child was left ; two-thirds, if two ; and 
three- fourths, if three or more : all entails and limitations were abolished. 
The effects of such a system, cooperating with the extensive subdivision 
of landed estates, which took place from the sale of forfeited properties 
during the Revolution, have been prodigious. It is estimated by the Duke 
de Gaeta that, in 1815, there were thirteen millions and fifty-nine thousand 
individuals in France belonging to the families of agricultural proprietors, 
and seven hundred and ten thousand, five hundred persons belonging to 
the families of landed proprietors not engaged in agriculture. As it may 
be supposed, where so extreme a subdivision of property has taken place,, 
the majority of these little proprietors are in a state of indigence. 

The confiscation of property in France was the great and crying sin 
of the Revolution, because it extended the consequences of present vio- 
lence to future ages : and, by a striking operation of retributive justice, 
the results of that very confiscation have rendered hopeless all the subse- 
quent efforts made by the inhabitants of France for the recovery of their 
freedom. By interesting so great a number of persons in the work of 
spoliation, and extending so far the feeling of hostility to the nobles by 
whom the confiscated estates might be claimed, the permanent settlement 
of the law of succession on the footing of equal and endless subdivision, 
has of necessity ensued ; and, strange as it may appear, public opinion 
has approved the result. It is the prevalent opinion in France, that this 
vast change is the leading benefit conferred on the country by the Revo- 
lution j and yet, to an impartial spectator, nothing can be more evident 

1804.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 169 

than that it is precisely this change which has rendered nugatory every 
subsequent attempt for the restoration of liberty ; because it nas totally 
destroyed the features and the elements of European civilization, and left 
only Indian ryots engaged in hopeless contests with a metropolis, wielding 
the influence of a central government and the terrors of military power. 
The universality of the illusion on this subject under which me French 
people labor, is owing to an instinctive fear, which leads the revolutionary 
party to shun everything that seems to favor even an approach to the 
restoration of the dispossessed proprietors : and, in their terror of this 
remote and chimerical evil, they have adopted measures which, by pre- 
venting the growth of any hereditary class between the throne and the 
peasant, have rendered the establishment of constitutional freedom im- 
practicable, and doomed the first of European monarchies to the slavery 
and decrepitude of Oriental despotism. By such mysterious means does 
human iniquity, even in this world, work out its merited punishment, and 
so indissoluble is the chain which unites guilty excess with ultimate retri- 

Almost everything, now, seemed to favor Napoleon's ambitious pur- 
poses. In the civil administration, all were reconciled to the consulate 
for life, or submitted in silence to an authority they could not resist. 
The army, dazzled by the brilliant exploits of their commander-in-chief, 
rallied around his standard, and sought only to give utterance to their 
admiration for his person : and the people, worn out with the sufferings 
and anxieties of the Revolution, joyfully welcomed a government which 
gave them that first of civil blessings, security tJ person and property. 
Among the higher officers of the army, however, the same unanimity by 
no means prevailed. Bernadotte was constantly in opposition to the First 
Consul ; and Moreau on every occasion exhibited, in contrast to the in- 
creasing splendor of military dress and the formality of court etiquette, 
the simplicity of republican manners and costume. The conqueror of 
Austria traversed the Place du Carrousel and the saloons of the Tuileries, 
in the plain dress of a citizen ; he declined repeated invitations to the 
First Consul's levees, until he was no longer asked to appear there ; and 
he often manifested toward Napoleon, when they met in public, a degree 
of coldness, which must have estranged persons even less jealous of each 
other's reputation than the heroes of Marengo and Hohenlinden. Nothing 
could induce him to attend at Notre Dame, when the reestablishment of 
religion was celebrated ; and at a dinner of military officers at his own 
house on the same day, he expressed the greatest contempt for the whole 

While Moreau was thus insensibly, and unavoidably, becoming the 
leader of the discontented Republicans in Paris, another distinguished 
general of the revolution was assuming the chief direction of the Royalist 
party. Pichegru, having found means to escape from his place of exile, 
sought an asylum in London, where he entered into close communication 
with the French emigrants in that capital, among whom a Chouan chief, 
Georges, was conspicuous. In due time, these two individuals, with 
Polignac, Lajolais and others, landed privately on the coast of Nor- 
mandy, and proceeded to Paris, where the police had strict cognizance 
of their movements, artfully encouraged their undertaking, and suffered 
them to remain for a time unmolested. Pichegru had an interview with 
Moreau, and unfolded to him some points of a Royalist conspiracy, but 


Moreau's principles were strictly those of the revolution ; and Pichegru, 
disappointed at being unable to coalesce with that distinguished general, 
prepared to withdraw from Paris with his associates : but the police now 
interfered and arrested the parties implicated, to the number of nearly 
fifty individuals, including Moreau himself. This was at once announced 
by proclamation, and the Parisians were astounded at the intelligence 
that a great number of Royalists, with Moreau at their head, had been 
detected in a conspiracy. 

During the examination of some of the prisoners thus arrested, Napo- 
leon ascertained that a person, unknown to the prisoners testifying, had 
attended some of the Royalists' meetings, and was received with great 
ceremony and respect. The description of this unknown person, as 
Napoleon affected to believe, corresponded so well to that of the Duke 
d'Enghien, a son of the Duke de Bourbon, and a lineal descendant of the 
great. Conde, that he signed an order for that prince's arrest, and gave such 
minute directions for his seizure, as rendered it evident that his destruc- 
tion was already determined. It subsequently appeared, that the duke had 
not been at Paris at all, and that the stranger was no other than Piche- 
gru. Nevertheless, the designs of the First Consul were carried into 
effect. The prince was arrested in his bed, in the neutral territory of 
Baden, on the night of March 15th; carried thence to Strasbourg, with 
his papers, and the persons found in the chateau, and was immediately 
afterward conveyed with a sufficient guard to Paris, and lodged in the 
castle of Vincennes. Everything here was prepared for his reception 
his chamber being ready, and his grave dug. The moment Napoleon 
heard of the prince's arrival at the barriers of Paris, he signed an order 
for his delivery to a military commission, consisting of General Hullin 
and six senior colonels of regiments, who at once proceeded to Vincennes, 
where they found Savary with a strong body of gendarmes in possession 
of the castle, and of all the avenues leading to it. 

The duke had reached Vincennes at 7 o'clock in the evening, (March 
20th ;) and, after supping and making many inquiries of the governor of 
the castle, as to the object of his being brought there, retired to his room. 
He had not fallen asleep, when he was summoned to attend the sitting of 
the commission. Savary entered soon after the interrogatories began, 
and took his station behind the president's chair. No evidence was 
brought against the prince ; no witnesses were examined ; a simple act 
of accusation was read to him, charging him with conspiring against 
France, and carrying on a treasonable correspondence with her enemies. 
The law, in such a case, required that the accused should be allowed 
counsel ; but none was granted him, and he was compelled, at midnight, 
to enter unaided on his own defence, which consisted in a simple, unequi- 
vocal and manly denial of any criminal practice whatever, on his part, 
toward the government of France. 

At the close of his declaration, he earnestly requested a private audi- 
ence with the First Consul ; and this desire was so reasonable, and was 
urged so feelingly, that General Hullin, the president, took a pen, and 
was commencing a letter expressive of the prince's wish, when Savary 
whispered to him, saying, "What are you about?" "I am writing to 
the First Consul," he answered, "to desire an interview." "Your 
duty is finished," replied Savary, taking the pen out of his hand ; " this 
18 my business." 

1804.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 17t 

The court then proceeded, without a vestige of evidence against the 
prince, to pronounce him guilty of all the charges in the accusation, and, 
under the peremptory directions of Napoleon, previously delivered to 
them, they ordered him to immediate execution. While descending the 
broken staircase that led to the fosse, he pressed the arm of his conductor 
and asked, " Are they going to leave me to perish in a dungeon, or throw 
me into an oubliette ?" When he arrived at the foot of the stairs, he saw, 
through the gray mist of the morning, a file of musketeers drawn up, and 
he uttered an expression of joy, at being permitted to die the death of a 
soldier. He requested that a confessor might be sent for, but this was 
denied ; and then, seeing all wishes unavailing and all hope extinguished, 
he turned to the soldiers, calmly gave the word of command himself, and 
fell pierced by seven balls. His remains, without any alteration of dress, 
were thrown into the grave previously prepared at the foot of the ram- 

When this deplorable event was known in Paris, on the morning of 
the 21st of March, a universal consternation prevailed; distrust, terroi 
and anxiety were depicted in every countenance. The deed was loudly 
stigmatized by a great portion of the people, as a bloody and needless 
murder. Crowds issued through the barrier Du Trone, to visit the spot 
where the noble victim had suffered ; and a favorite spaniel, that had fol- 
lowed the prince to the place of execution, was seen lying on the grave. 
The excitement occasioned by this scene was so great, that, by an order 
of the police, the dog was removed, and visits to the castle were prohibited. 

Other tragical events soon followed. Early on the morning of April 
6th, General Pichegru was found strangled in his prison. Since his 
arrest, he had undergone many examinations, during which he manifested 
the most unconquerable firmness, and declared his intention of revealing 
on his trial, the arts of the police, by whom he had been entrapped into 
the conspiracy, and through whose secret agency constant facilities for 
pursuing the plot, together with misrepresentations of its popularity, were 
daily spread before him. His death was accomplished by means of a 
black silk handkerchief, twisted around his neck with a small stick about 
five inches in length. As there was no reason to suspect Pichegru of 
having committed suicide, and as the certainty of his conviction rendered 
it unnecessary for the government to destroy him privately, in anticipa- 
tion of his escape from the law, he was undoubtedly murdered to prevent 
his threatened disclosures of the practices of the police, and Napoleon has 
not escaped the suspicion of being implicated in the deed. 

When Georges was brought to trial, Captain Wright, commander of a 
British vessel in which Pichegru came from England, and who was after- 
ward wrecked on the coast of France and brought to Paris under arrest 
with all his crew, was called to testify against the prisoner. This intrepid 
sailor, who served as a lieutenant on board Sir Sidney Smith's ship when 
he checked Napoleon's career at Acre, refused to give any evidence, say- 
ing, with proper spirit, " Gentlemen, I am an officer in the British service ; 
I am not bound to account to you for the discharge of my duty, and I deny 
your authority to require answers from me to these questions :" and when 
his deposition, previously taken in prison, was read, he added, " you have 
omitted rny declaration, that I was threatened with being shot if I did not 
reveal to my inquisitors the secrets of my country." He was remanded 
to prison, though the government could show no legal or plausible ground 



for his detention, and some time afterward was found dead in his cell, with 
his throat cut from ear to ear. It is yet unknown who perpetrated this 
murder, and will probably ever remain so : but it is certain that Captain 
Wright did not commit suicide, and that the officials of his prison-house, 
without whose knowledge he could not have been assassinated, had no in 
terest whatever in causing his death. 

On the trial of the conspirators, it soon became manifest that Moreau 
had no concern in the plot, and the interest excited by his situation was so 
intense, that when Lecourbe entered the court with Moreau's infant child, 
all the soldiers in attendance spontaneously rose and presented arms; and 
if Moreau had at that moment given the word, the court would have been 
overturned and the prisoners liberated. Whenever he rose to address the 
judges, the gendarmes rose also, and remained uncovered till he sat down. 
In fact, the public mind was so agitated, that the influence of Moreau in 
fetters almost equalled that of the First Consul on the throne. The trial 
resulted in the sentencing of Georges and fifteen others to death, and of 
Moreau and four others to two years' imprisonment. Eight of those con- 
demned to death were executed ; the others were pardoned ; and Napo- 
leon, anxious to be quit of Moreau's presence, purchased from him his 
estate of Gros Bois, and gave him every facility for retiring to the United 
States of America, in conformity to his own request. 

In the midst of these bloody events, Napoleon assumed the Imperial 
crown ; and the shadow of the expiring Republic was transformed into the 
reality of Byzantine servitude. The project was first broached to the 
Senate, and its public announcement emanated from the Tribunate, as 
being the only branch of the legislature in which even the form of popular 
representation prevailed. Notwithstanding the headlong course of public 
opinion in favor of despotic power, there were some determined men who 
stood forward to resist the current. Carnot in the Tribunate, and Ber- 
iier in the Council of State, were the foremost of this dauntless band. 
But they accomplished nothing beyond the personal reputation incident to 
such an evidence of devoted patriotism ; as, in both branches of the legis- 
lature, the decree was carried by overwhelming majorities. On the 18th 
of May, the Senate declared Napoleon Bonaparte Emperor of the French, 
and referred the measure to the people for their ratification. The people 
responded with enthusiasm. Three millions five hundred and seventy-two 
thousand three hundred and twenty-nine votes were given ; and of these, 
only two thousand five hundred and sixty-nine were in the negative. 
History contains no other example of so unanimous an approval of the 
foundation of a dynasty, nor any other instance where a nation so joyfully 
took refuge in the stillness of despotism. 

Napoleon's first step on coming to the imperial throne, was to create 
Berthier, Murat, Moncey, Jourdan, Massena, Augereau, Bernadotte, Soult, 
Brune, Lannes, Mortier, Ney, Davoust, Bessieres, Kellerman, Lefebvre, 
Perignon, and Serrurier, Marshals of the Empire. On the same day, he 
arranged the titles and precedence of the members of his family. He 
directed that his brothers and sisters should receive the title of Imperial 
highness ; that the great dignitaries of the Empire should adopt that of 
most serene highness ; and that the address of " my lord" should be re- 
vived in favor of these elevated personages. " Whoever," says Madame 
de Stael, in speaking of these days and events, " could suggest an addi. 
tional piece of etiquette from the olden time, propose a new reverence, 9 

1804.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 173 

novel mode of knocking at the door of an antechamber, a more ceremoni- 
ous manner of presenting a petition or folding a letter, was regarded as a 
benefactor of the human race. The code of imperial etiquette is the most 
remarkable authentic record of human baseness that the history of the 
world contains," 



THE recommencement of the war was followed by hostile preparations 
of great extent on both sides of the Channel. Never did the ancient rivalry 
of France and England break forth with more vehemence, and never was 
the animosity of their respective governments more warmly supported by 
the patriotism and passions of the people. The first military operation of 
the French ruler was attended with rapid and easy success. He directed 
Mortier with twenty thousand troops to reduce the Electorate of Hanover ; 
and as the entire force of this province did not exceed sixteen thousand 
men under Count Walmoden, resistance was hopeless : a convention was 
therefore entered into at Suhlingen. by which it was stipulated that the 
Hanoverian army should retire with the honors of war behind the Elbe, 
taking with them their field-artillery, and agreeing afterward to disband 
for one year. During this incursion, the French armies set at nought 
the neutrality not only of Hanover, but of the lesser States in its vicinity. 
Mortier occupied without hesitation Hamburg and Bremen, and closed the 
Elbe and Weser against British merchandise. This uncalled for aggres- 
sion was of importance, not only as demonstrating Napoleon's determina- 
tion to admit of no neutrality in the approaching contest, but as unfolding 
the first germ of the Continental System, to which he afterward mainly 
trusted in his hostilities against Great Britain. 

At the same time, St. Cyr was dispatched into Italy with an army of 
fourteen thousand men. He occupied the port of Tarentum, invaded 
Naples and Tuscany, declared Leghorn in a state of siege, and confis- 
cated the British merchandise in that seaport. The islands of Elba and 
Corsica were also put in the best state of defence, and ten 'thousand men 
were employed in perfecting the fortifications of Alexandria, which for- 
tress Napoleon considered as the key to the whole of the Italian peninsula. 
In addition to these measures of conquest and defence, he soon issued a 
decree against English commerce, declaring that no colonial produce, 
and no merchandise coming directly from England, should be received 
into the ports of France ; and that all such merchandise and produce 
should be confiscated. Neutral vessels, arriving in France, were sub- 
jected to new and vexatious regulations, and all that had touched at a 
harbor of Great Britain were made liable to seizure. 

But these proceedings sunk into insignificance, when compared with 
the gigantic preparations made for the invasion of England, which Napo- 
leon now seriously undertook. His object was to assemble, at a single 
point, a flotilla capable of transporting an army of one hundred and f ifly 


thousand men, with itts field and siege equipage, ammunition, stores and 
horses; and at the same time, to provide so formidable a covering naval 
force as might secure its safe disembarkation, despite any resistance that 
the English might make. The harbor of Boulogne was chosen as the 
place of general rendezvous; every port, from Brest to the Texel, was 
filled with gun-boats of all dimensions; the dock-yards and shipwrights 
were put into requisition ; and the different vessels, as soon as finished, 
were sent, around, under the protection of the several batteries along the 
coast, to Cherbourg, Boulogne, Calais and Dunkirk. In the course of the 
year, no less than thirteen hundred sail, of various descriptions, were 
assembled at Boulogne and the adjoining harbors, for the transportation 
of the troops, together with an immense number of other vessels, destined 
to convey the stores and ammunition of the army: and the combined 
navies of France, Spain and Holland, were engaged for the protection of 
this innumerable fleet. The secret design of Napoleon was to assemble 
the ships of the covering naval force at Martinique, bring them rapidly 
back while the British, in detached squadrons, were traversing the At- 
lantic in search of them, raise the blockade of Rochefort and Brest, and 
enter the Channel with the entire armament, amounting to seventy sail 
of the line. He intended then to cross over to England with the whole 
army, reach London in five days, and complete the subjugation of Britain 
at a blow. 

On the other hand, the people and government of England were active 
in preparing to repel the threatened invasion. In addition to the militia, 
eighty thousand strong, which were called out on the 25th of March, and 
the regular army of a hundred and thirty thousand, the House of Commons 
passed a bill on the 18th of July, authorizing the king to call a levy of 
all the male population between the ages of seventeen and fifty-five, who 
were to be divided into regiments according to their years and professions ; 
and, such was the general zeal and enthusiasm, three hundred thousand 
men were within a few weeks enrolled, armed and disciplined, in the 
different parts of the country. Great activity was also evinced in pro- 
moting the efficiency of the navy: the harbors of France and Holland 
were closely blockaded ; Lord Nelson rode triumphant over the Medi- 
terranean; and, excepting when their small craft were stealing along 
the coast to the rendezvous at Boulogne, the flag of France almost disap- 
peared from the ocean. 

While these extensive preparations were progressing, the government 
was called to suppress another of those unhappy attempts at rebellion, 
which have so frequently disgraced the history and blasted the prospects 
of Ireland. A conspiracy was set on foot to force the castle and harbor- 
stores of Dublin, dissolve the connexion with England, and establish a 
Republic in close alliance with France ; but the means at the disposal 
of the conspirators were as insignificant as the objects they had in view 
were visionary. Eighty or a hundred persons, under the guidance of 
Emmet, a brother of the chief who was engaged in the previous insur- 
rection, assembled on the eve of the festival of St. James, accompanied by 
the peasantry from the adjoining counties, and set forth with the intention 
of attacking the castle. But they abandoned this project during their 
march, and began to commit various outrages on individual citizens ; and 
among others, they murdered Lord Kilwarden, the venerable lord-chief- 
justice of Ireland, under circumstances of great aggravation and atrocity, 


The insurrection was quelled by the regular troops, and the two principal 
leaders, Emmet and Russell, were executed. 

Notwithstanding the powerful condition of the British navy, no event 
of importance, excepting the capture of Surinam in the West Indies, 
resulted from the expeditions of the fleets ; and the people of the king. 
dom, while considering the enormous burdens imposed on them for the 
support of the naval armaments, soon perceived a want of energy in 
the ministers whose duty it was to direct them to good account. The 
commerce of Britain began to suffer for want of the active protection of 
former days, and the general dissatisfaction was much increased by the 
alarming state of the king's health. His majesty gradually recovered, 
however; but during the interval of his illness, a great majority of the 
men of the nation became convinced of the necessity of placing the helm 
of state under firmer guidance; and all eyes were naturally turned 
toward that illustrious statesman who had retired to make way for a 
pacific administration, but could now, in strict accordance with his prin- 
ciples, resume the direction of the second war with revolutionary France. 
As is usual in such cases, the gradual approximation of parties in the 
House of Commons indicated the conversion of the public mind, and it 
soon became evident that the administration was approaching its end. 
On the 15th of March, 1804, Mr. Pitt made a long and elaborate speech, 
in which he commented with great severity on the misdirection of the 
powers of the navy, and concluded with moving for returns of all the 
ships in commission in the years 1793, 1801, and 1803. He was cor- 
dially supported by Mr. Fox and Mr. Sheridan., and a coalition ensued 
between the Whig and Tory branches of the opposition. The motion 
was at first lost by a vote of one hundred and thirty to two hundred; but 
from the character and influence of the men who were in favor of the 
resolution, it was manifest that this majority would soon decrease : on 
the 25th of April it was reduced to thirty-seven, and the ministers stated 
that they held their offices only until successors could be appointed, which 
latter event took place on the 12th of May.. Mr. Pitt became Prime 
Minister, in place of Mr. Addington; Lord Melville, First Lord of the 
Admiralty, in place of Earl St. Vincent; and Lord Harrowby, Foreign 
Secretary, in place of Lord Hawkesbury. 

Before the commencement of the revolutionary war, the revenue of 
Austria amounted to a hundred and six millions of florins, or about forty- 
six and a half millions of dollars. During the war, the revenue was in- 
creased by the imposition of new taxes, and it sustained no diminution by 
the peace of Carnpo Formio, as the Venetian states proved more than an 
equivalent for the loss of the Low Countries. At the peace of Luneville, 
the income of the government was a hundred and fifteen millions of florins, 
with which sum they were enabled to maintain an army of three hundred 
thousand men, including fifty thousand cavalry. Like most of the other 
European states, Austria, during the difficulties of former years, had been 
compelled to resort to a paper currency, and the Bank of Vienna, estab. 
lished by Maria Theresa, in 1762, was the agent by which this was 
effected. It was not, however, a paper circulation, convertible at pleas- 
ure into gold, but a system of assignats, possessing a forced legal cur- 
rency ; and the government, in 1797, passed a decree prohibiting any 
person from demanding exchange in coin, for more than twenty-five florins. 
While the war was in progress, silver and gold almost disappeared, and 


paper issues for small sums were in general circulation. A large portion 
of the metallic currency was of brass, issued at nearly double its intrinsic 
value. In 1789, the public debt of Austria was two hundred millions of 
florins ; but in 1801, it had increased to six hundred millions. The 
treasury had been reduced to the necessity of paying its annual interest 
in paper money, and even of making forced loans from the inhabitants. 
The population of Austria, in 1801, was twenty-seven and a half millions. 

Jealousy of Prussia was, during the years that followed the treaty of 
Luneville, the leading principle of the Austrian cabinet; this feeling 
originated in the aggression and conquest of the Great Frederic, and had 
been much increased by the impolitic and ungenerous advantage which 
the court of Berlin took of the dangers and distress of the Austrian mon- 
archy, to extend its possessions and influence in the north of Germany. 
But though compelled, at intervals, to withdraw from her alliance with 
England, Austria never ceased to look to that nation as the main pillar of 
the confederacy for the independence of Europe. The more prominent 
members of the administration of Austria at this period were the Count 
Cobentzell, vice-chancellor of state, and Count Colloredo, a cabinet min- 
ister and intimate friend of the Emperor. The Archduke Charles was 
at the head of the war department, though he was restrained by the jeal- 
ousy of his colleagues from following out his own views in the manage- 
ment of the army. 

By withdrawing from the alliance against France, in 1794, Prussia 
had succeeded in appropriating to herself a large portion of the spoils of 
Poland ; and during the long period of peace that she enjoyed, her popu- 
lation had rapidly increased, the commerce of Germany had fallen into 
her hands, and the turmoil and expenditure of war, so desolating to the 
neighboring states, was felt in Prussia only by the increasing demand for 
agricultural produce and the augmenting profits of neutral navigation. In 
1804, the population of Prussia amounted to nine and a half millions ; 
her revenue, to thirty-eight and a half millions of thalers, or nearly thirty 
millions of dollars ; and her army consisted of two hundred thousand 
men, strong, brave, and highly disciplined ; but not to be compared to the 
French, either in the experience and skill of the officers, or in the moral 
energy of the men as developed by the events of the Revolution. 

The Prussian capital was one of the most agreeable and least expen- 
sive in Europe. No rigid etiquette, no impassable line of demarcation, 
separated the court from the people : the royal family lived on terms of 
friendly equality, not only with the nobility, but with the other prom- 
inent inhabitants of Berlin. Many ladies of rank, both at Paris and 
London, expended larger sums on their dress than the Queen of Prussia; 
but few women equalled her in dignity, grace, and elevation of sentiment. 
A spirit of economy, order and wisdom pervaded the internal arrange- 
ments of the state. The cabinet, comprising, among other members, 
Hardenberg and Stein, was one of the ablest of the day; and the Prussian 
diplomatists had long given their country an influence at foreign courts 
beyond what could have been expected from her resources and power. 

Russia, under the benignant rule of Alexander, was daily advancing 
in wealth, power and prosperity. From the commencement of his reign, 
his acts denoted a large spirit of benevolence. He abolished the knout 
and the use of the torture, gave valuable rights to several classes of 
citizens, introduced improvements in the civil and criminal codes, ban 


ished slavery from the royal domains, and decreed the beginning of 
representative institutions, by permitting the Senate to remonstrate against 
the enactment of proposed laws. The population of Russia, in 1804, was 
thirty-six millions; her revenue, fifty millions of silver rubles, or about 
fifty-seven millions of dollars ; and her army contained, nominally, three 
hundred thousand men ; though at this period, and for some years after, 
she was unable to bring more than seventy thousand men into any one 
field of battle. The greater part of the revenue of Russia was derived 
from a capitation-tax; a species of impost common to all nations in a 
certain stage of civilization, where slavery is general, and the wealth of 
each proprietor is nearly in proportion to the number of agricultural 
laborers on his estate. The tax amounted to five rubles for each free- 
man, and two for each serf, and was paid by every subject of the Empire, 
whether free or enslaved. 

The principal powers of Europe were in these several conditions, when 
the murder of the Duke d'Enghien took place ; and the startling intel- 
ligence of that bloody deed, which excited both terror and indignation in 
every court of Europe, was followed by the news of the assassination of 
Pichegru and Wright, and the occupation by Napoleon, of Hanover and 
Tarentum. This rapid succession of atrocious crime, and ambitious en- 
croachment on neutral rights, at once dissolved all true confidence and 
regard between the several European cabinets and France; and from 
that day, each independent sovereign began to look on a renewal of 
general hostilities as inevitable, though the majority confined their im- 
mediate acts to remonstrances of a more or less emphatic character. 

Meanwhile, Napoleon proceeded with his preparations for the descent 
upon England, and repaired to Boulogne to review the troops and inspect 
the condition of the flotilla. From Boulogne, he traversed the coast of 
the Channel as far as Ostend, everywhere examining the condition of the 
harbors, and the detachments of the grand army, and communicating to 
all classes the energy of his own ardent and indefatigable mind. 

On his return to Paris, he commenced preparations for the solemnity 
of his coronation. Although the spirit of the age was essentially irre- 
ligious, and the establishment of the Roman Catholic worship had proved 
unpopular with many of the people, Napoleon well knew that a large 
portion of the provincial inhabitants regarded the consecrating of his 
authority by the ceremony of coronation as an important particular; and 
that to all, whatever might be their latitude of opinion, it was of great 
political consequence to show that his personal influence could compel 
even the very Head of the Church himself, to officiate on the occasion. 
The papal benediction appeared to be the link which would unite the 
revolutionary to the legitimate regime, and cause the faithful to forget, 
in the sac/ed authority with which he would thus be invested, the vio- 
lence and bloodshed that had paved his way to the throne. For these 
reasons, Napoleon had long before determined to induce the pope, con- 
trary to all precedent for the last ten centuries, to repair to Paris ; and, 
for some months, negotiations to this effect had been on foot, which ended 
in the consent of the pope to undertake the journey. He accordingly 
arrived at Fontainebleau on the 25tn of November, and reached Paris on 
the following day, where he was lodged in state, at the Tuileries. The 
ceremony of coronation took place at Notre Dame on the 2nd of Decem- 
ber, with great pornp and magnificence. After taking the oath, and 


receiving the papal benediction, Napoleon took the crown from the hands 
of the venerable pontiff and placed it on his own head, after which he 
transferred it to the head of Josephine, who knelt before him. 

The next day, an animating military spectacle took place in the Champ 
de Mars. Napoleon laid aside his imperial robes in which he had been 
crowned, and appeared in the uniform of a colonel of the guard, to dis- 
tribute to all the colonels of the army the Eagles, which were thence- 
forward to be the standards of France. 

The close of this year was marked by an unfortunate rupture between 
Spain and Great Britain. The former government, through negotiations 
and treaties with France, had been in a measure compelled to purchase 
peace by the payment of a large subsidy, the amount of which was kept 
carefully concealed from the British cabinet. When the facts of the 
case transpired, the English minister remonstrated against the payment 
of such a sum of money, which was as directly furnishing France with 
the means of prosecuting her descent upon England, as if the vessels 
which it purchased were constructed in Spanish harbors, and moved 
thcmce to Boulogne. It was not long after discovered that a squadron 
of Spanish line-of-battle ships were equipped and ready to sail for Ferrol, 
where a French fleet awaited their junction, and that the Spanish vessels 
would put to sea, the moment that four Spanish frigates, with the sub- 
sidy on board in specie, should arrive from America. The British cab- 
inet immediately issued orders to Lord Nelson in the Mediterranean, 
Lord Cornwallis on the Brest station, and Admiral Cochrane off Ferrol, 
to prevent the sailing of both the French and Spanish squadrons; they 
also directed each of the three naval commanders to detach two frigates 
to cruise off Cadiz, and intercept the homeward-bound treasure-ships of 
Spain ; and, at the same time, they directed the admirals to stop any 
Spanish vessels laden with naval or military stores, and detain them 
until the pleasure of the British government was known; but to commit 
no further act of hostility, either on such vessels or on the treasure- 
ships. These orders were punctually executed. Four of the six British 
frigates soon fell in with the four Spanish ships off Cadiz, and the English 
officer in command, informed the Spanish commodore of his instructions, 
and entreated him to suffer the detention of his vessels without the effu- 
sion of blood. But the Spaniard declined to submit to an equal force, 
and, in consequence, an engagement took place, which ended in thb 
blowing up of one of the Spanish ships, and the capture of the other three, 
with te*n millions of dollars on board. 

The capture of these frigates, before any formal announcement of hos- 
tilities, produced the result which might have been anticipated ; namely, 
a declaration of war by Spain against Great Britain. 



WHILE Spain was making preparations to commence hostilities, in con- 
formity to her late declaration of war, and the descent upon England 
occupied the attention of the respective governments on both sides of the 
Channel ; Napoleon found leisure to pursue his ambitious projects in 
other quarters, by journeying through Italy, and, by the intervention of 
force and flattery, as occasion required, annexing several of the minor 
towns and states of that peninsula to the Empire of France. His rapid 
strides toward universal dominion did not escape the notice of other Euro- 
pean powers, and negotiations were soon on foot for the arrest of his pro- 

A treaty of alliance, offensive and defensive, was concluded between 
Great Britain and Russia, on the llth of April, 1805. The preamble 
ran thus : " As the state of suffering in which Europe is placed demands 
a speedy remedy, their majesties have agreed to employ the most speedy 
and efficacious means to form a general league of the states of Europe, 
and to engage them to accede to the present concert, in order to remedy 
the existing evils, without waiting for further encroachments on the part 
of France." The forces proposed to be employed were fixed at five 
hundred thousand men from the combined states of Europe ; and the ob- 
jects of the alliance were to be thus declared : " First, the evacuation 
of the country of Hanover and of the north of Germany. Secondly, the 
establishment of the independence of the Republics of Holland and Swit- 
zerland. Thirdly, the reestablishment of the King of Sardinia in Pied- 
mont. Fourthly, the future security of the kingdom of Naples, and the 
complete evacuation of Italy and the island of Elba by the French forces. 
Fifthly, the establishment of an order of things in Europe which may 
effectually guaranty the security and independence of the different states, 
and present a solid barrier against future usurpations. To enable the 
several powers which may accede to this coalition to bring forward the 
forces respectively required of them, England engages to furnish a sub- 
sidy, in the proportion of twelve hundred and fifty thousand pounds ster- 
ling for every one hundred thousand of regular troops brought into the 

By separate articles signed between England and Russia, it was agreed 
that the movements contemplated by the alliance should be commenced 
as soon as four hundred thousand men were ready for active service ; of 
which Austria was expected to furnish two hundred and fifty thousand, 
Russia one hundred and fifteen thousand, and Hanover, Sardinia and 
Naples, thirty-five thousand. After a protracted negotiation with Aus- 
tria, that government at length joined the league, and Sweden followed 
the example ; but Prussia, still under the baneful influence of France, 
and bribed to neutrality by a vague proposal of Napoleon to annex Han- 
over to her dominions, refused all connexion with the allied powers. 

These threatening measures did not deter Napoleon from hastening his 
preparations for the invasion of Great Britain : they rather, on the con- 
""* 18 


trary, furnished an additional reason for prosecuting that great under- 
taking, for he was well aware that if England were destroyed, the 
Continental coalition would soon fall to pieces. The French troops now 
assembled at Boulogne and the harbors adjoining, amounted in all to one 
hundred and fifty-five thousand men, provided with four hundred and thirty- 
two pieces of cannon, nearly fifteen thousand horses, and a prodigious 
quantity of military stores and ammunition. During its encampment on 
the shores of the Channel, this great army was organized in a manner 
different from anything that had yet been attempted in modern Europe. 
At the commencement of the war of the Revolution, the divisions of the 
army, generally fifteen or eighteen thousand strong, were hurried into the 
field under the first officer that could be found ; but it soon appeared that 
few generals were capable of directing the movements of such considera- 
ble masses ; while, on the other hand, if the divisions were too small, 
there was a want of that unity and precision in their joint operations which 
is ever necessary to success. Napoleon introduced a new system, divi- 
ding his army, in the first instance, into corps of from twenty to thirty 
thousand men, each of which was intrusted to a Marshal of the Empire ; 
and again separating these corps into four or five divisions, under the 
command of generals who received their orders from the marshal. In 
this way, the generals became familiar with the qualities of their officers 
and the officers with the capacity and disposition of their men : an esprit 
de corps was .formed, not only among the officers of the same regiment, 
but among those of the same division and corps ; and the various grades 
of officers, from the sergeant of the company to the marshal himself, took 
an equal degree of pride in the precision with which their subordinates 
performed their several evolutions. 

The organization of the flotilla at Boulogne was as perfect as that of the 
land-forces. It was divided into as many squadrons as there were sections 
in the army, and the stores, baggage and artillery were already on board, 
so that nothing remained but the embarkation of the men, when the proper 
time should arrive. From constant practice, every man in the army at 
length came to know in what particular vessel he was to sail, and where 
to station himself while on board ; and it was found by actual experiment, 
that twenty-five thousand troops drawn up opposite the vessels allotted to 
them, could be embarked in the short space often minutes. The flotilla 
consisted of twenty-three hundred vessels, more than half of which were 
gun-boats of different sizes, mounting three thousand pieces of cannon ; 
and the ostensible object of this number of small armed vessels was to force 
a passage across the Channel : in point of tact, however, Napoleon never 
intended to fire one of these guns, but only to attract attention to them as 
his sole dependence ; and, while the British navy was dispatched in vari- 
ous quarters to protect her colonies, which the combined fleets of France 
and Spain were professedly attempting to subjugate, he proposed, as has 
already been related in the last chapter, to bring, by a sudden combina- 
tion, an overwhelming naval force into the Channel, cover the passage ot 
the flotilla, and land his formidable army on the English coast. The 
army and flotilla being now in perfect readiness, Napoleon waited only 
the arrival of the fleet to enable him to carry this project into execution. 

The entire naval force intended to sustain this manoeuvre, was no less 
than sixty-eight ships of the line, of which, France was to furnish thirty- 
eight, and Spain thirty ; and they were to be thus stationed : of the French, 

1805.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 181 

twenty-one at Brest, six at Rochefort, and eleven at Toulon; and the 
thirty Spanish ships were to be divided between the three ports of Cadiz, 
Ferrol and Carthagena, the whole to await Napoleon's orders. 

While the British government were in utter ignorance of the ulterior 
destination of the French and Spanish fleets, they became aware that a 
portion of these ships were probably ordered to the West Indies, and they 
therefore directed their admirals to keep a careful watch along the whole 
western and southern coast of the hostile countries. But despite the 
utmost vigilance of Nelson, Cornwallis and Cochrane, Admiral Ville- 
neuve put to sea, on the 10th of April, with eighteen French and Spanish 
ships of the line and ten frigates, having also ten thousand veteran troops 
on board, and sailed for the West Indies. Nelson soon heard of Ville- 
neuve's departure ; but mistook his direction, and, under the belief that 
he had gone to Egypt, set sail himself for Palermo. Within a few days, 
however, the information brought by his cruisers convinced him that he 
was in error, and he returned to Gibraltar. On the 5th of May, he ascer- 
tained that Villeneuve had, in fact, gone to the West Indies, and, crowd- 
ing all sail in that direction, he arrived at Barbadoes on the 4th of June ; 
but in the interim, Villeneuve had reached Martinique, on the 14th of 
May, and sailed thence to the north, on the 28th, after having been joined 
by two additional ships of the line, and received Napoleon's final instruc- 
tions. By these, he was ordered to repair to Ferrol and raise the block- 
ade ; to withdraw the five French and ten Spanish ships of the line that 
awaited him in that harbor, proceed thence to Rochefort where five ships 
of the line lay at anchor, and with this combined fleet of forty ships, sail 
to Brest, where twenty-one more were stationed under Admiral Gan- 
theaume. With this force, which would greatly overmaster any fleet that 
the British at the moment could oppose to them, Villeneuve was to hasten 
to Boulogne find cover the passage of the flotilla: and everything now 
seemed to promise success to the undertaking. 

Nelson, learning nothing of the enemy's whereabout at Barbadoes, pro- 
ceeded to Antigua, where he arrived on the 13th of June, and received 
such information as induced him to believe that Villeneuve had returned 
to Europe. As Nelson was confident that this movement of the French 
admiral had reference to some dangerous project yet unknown to the 
British government, he dispatched several fast-sailing vessels to Lisbon 
and Portsmouth, to apprise the London cabinet of the return of the hostile 
fleet, and express his fears as to their ulterior destination. Fortunately, 
one of these vessels dispatched by Nelson outstripped Villerreuve, and 
reached London on the 9th of July. The admiralty instantly sent orders 
to Admiral Stirling, off Rochefort, to raise the blockade of that port and 
unite himself with Sir Robert Calder, off Ferrol, directing also the latter 
officer to take command of both squadrons, amounting together to fifteen 
ships of the line, and cruise to the westward of Cape Finisterre, to inter- 
cept the homeward-bound fleet. 

Sir Robert had hardly gained his station, on the 22nd of July, when 
the enemy hove in sight, consisting, now of twenty ships of the line, one 
of fifty guns, and seven frigates. The weather was so hazy, that the 
two fleets had almost come together before either was aware of the other's 
approach. Some confusion took place in consequence, and the action, for 
which Sir Robert immediately gave the signal, without regard to his in- 
feriority of numbers, commenced in a disorderly manner, several vessels 


of both fleets having become engaged with two or more opponents. The 
battle continued until night-fall, when the parties separated to repair 
damages ; the English loss amounted to one hundred and ninety-eight 
men killed and wounded, and one of their ships was so far disabled as to 
require to be put in tow of another vessel : the loss of the enemy was 
four hundred and seventy-six men, and two line-of-battle ships which sur- 
rendered to the British. On the day following, neither party showed any 
disposition to renew the combat ; and, on the third day, Sir Robert, aware 
of the danger of encountering again a superior force, especially when that 
force was every hour likely to be augmented by a junction with the 
liberated fleets of Rochefort and Ferrol, wisely bore away with his 
prizes toward the English Channel, Villeneuve then made sail for Fer- 
rol, and having there joined the French and Spanish fleets, and repaired the 
damages sustained in the action of the 22nd, he sailed for Brest. But he 
received accounts at sea, from a Danish vessel, of the approach of a large 
British squadron, and he immediately tacked and took refuge in Cadiz, 
where he arrived on the 21st of August. 

As the success of Napoleon's project depended mainly on his ability to 
bring his entire naval force to Boulogne, before his intentions could be 
discovered or interrupted, the action with Sir Robert Calder, so trivial 
when considered as a maritime operation, was of immense importance 
in its results. Napoleon was transported with rage when the intelligence 
reached him, for he saw at once that his hopes of sujugating England 
were at an end, and that all his mighty preparations for that object, with 
the vast expense attending it, had been made in vain. But in that mo- 
ment of fury and disappointment, he rose superior to misfortune, and 
adopted one of the boldest resolutions, and traced the plan of one of the 
most skilful achievements that any conqueror ever conceived. Without a 
moment's hesitation, he dictated to his secretary orders for the transfer of 
the entire army from the shores of the Channel to the banks of the Rhine : 
their order of march, their lines of conveyance, their points of rendezvous, 
together with the surprises, attacks and obstacles they might encounter, 
were all provided for with surprising accuracy. Indeed, such was the 
singular foresight of the plan, embracing a line of operations three hun- 
dred leagues in extent, the stations assigned were reached by the troops 
in exact accordance to the original orders, point by point, and day by day, 
through the whole route to Munich. 

The allied troops preparing to act against France, at this time, were no 
less than three hundred and fifty thousand men, of whom one hundred 
and sixteen thousand were Russians, advancing through Poland to the 
plains of Bavaria ; but as this large force could not be concentrated in 
masses for at least two months, Napoleon resolved to put forth all his 
energies for a decisive blow against Austria while she was unsupported 
by her allies. The French army from the northern coast, when united 
with the disposable forces in Holland and Hanover amounted to a hun- 
dred and ninety thousand men; and the army of Italy, including the 
troops in the Neapolitan territories, was fifty thousand strong. But in 
addition to these, Napoleon, on the 23rd of September, submitted two 
propositions to the Senate, which were immediately adopted ; one was 
for a levy of eighty thousand conscripts from the class who, by law, would 
become liable to military service in 1806 ; and the other was the reor- 
ganization of the National Guard, which greatly augmented the numbers 
of that force and, in effect, placed it at the Emperor's disposal. 

1805.] HIS TORY OF EUROPE. 183 

Meanwhile, the British government directed their efforts to shut up the 
combined fleets in the harbor of Cadiz, and Nelson repaired thither in the 
Victory, of ninety guns, to take command of the blockading squadron. 
His reception there was most gratifying. The yards of the British ships 
were crowded with hardy veterans, anxious to get a sight of their favor- 
ite hero, and their peals of acclamation made the welkin ring when he 
appeared on the Victory's quarter-deck, shaking hands with his old cap- 
tains, who crowded on board of his ship to welcome him. So great was 
the terror of his name to the enemy, that although Villeneuve had just 
received positive orders from Napoleon to put to sea, he hesitated to 
obey ; and in a council of war. it was resolved not to venture out unless 
he "was full one-third superior to the British fleet. As soon as Nel- 
son learned this decision, he withdrew a part of his ships about sixty 
miles to the westward of Cape Mary, and stationed a chain of repeating 
frigates to inform him by signals of the French admiral's movements: 
at the same time, the blockade was so rigorously maintained that he 
judged the enemy would soon be compelled to put to sea for want of 
provisions. Deceived, now, as to Nelson's real strength, Villeneuve 
resolved to set sail and hazard a battle- 
Accordingly, early on the 19th of October, the English frigates made 
signal that the enemy were coming out of the harbor ; and at two o'clock 
in the afternoon, they were fairly at sea, steering southeast. Nelson 
gave orders to chase in the same direction, and at daybreak on the 21st, 
the entire fleet of thirty-three line-of-battle ships and seven frigates, was 
discovered drawn up in a semicircle, in close order, about twelve miles 
off, and a few leagues to the northwest of Cape Trafalgar. The British 
fleet consisted of twenty-seven ships of the line and four frigates. Nel- 
son's plan of attack was to bear down on the enemy in two lines, one of 
which was led by himself, in the Victory, and the other by Collingwood, 
in the Royal Sovereign ; he ,then gave the signal from the mast-head of 
the Victory for that order, celebrated as the last he ever made, " England 
expects that every man will do his duty." It was received with loud 
shouts from the British sailors, and the two lines pressed on to the con- 
test. Collingwood's ship, however, so far outsailed all the others, that 
he reached the enemy's line, steered boldly into its centre and was 
already enveloped in fire, when the nearest vessels were yet two miles 
in his rear. "See!" cried Nelson, as he watched his progress, "see 
how that noble fellow Collingwood carries his ship into action!" and 
Collingwood, well knowing what would be passing in the mind of his 
commander, at the same time observed to his officers, "What would 
Nelson give to be here !" Collingwood bravely maintained his position 
against a whole circle of enemies, and when the other British ships came 
up successively within range, their crews cheered to see, amid the open- 
ings of the dense smoke, that his flag was still flying. At length, Nel- 
son's line reached its appointed place, and the action became general. 
Nelson laid his own ship alongside the Redoubtable, and a terrible can- 
nonade was for a short time maintained; but before the latter vessel 
hauled down her flag, a musket shot from one of the marksmen in her 
maintop struck Nelson on the shoulder. " They have done for me at 
last," said he to Hardy, as he fell to the deck. "I hope not," said 
Hardy. "Yes," he replied, "my back-bone is shot through." He wa* 
immediately carried below, after he had taken out his handkerchief to 



cover his face, lest the crew should recognize him. The cock-pit was 
crowded with wounded and dying men, and he refused to receive the 
attention of the surgeon until ell the others had taken their turns. The 
action meanwhile continued, the enemy's ships began to strike their 
colors, and as the cheers of the Victory's crew announced successively 
the lowering of the hostile flags, a gleam of joy illuminated the counte- 
nance of the dying hero. As soon as Hardy was able to leave the deck, 
he came down to visit his commander. They both shook hands in silence, 
and Hardy could not restrain his tears. " How goes the day, Hardy ?" 
said Nelson. Hardy replied that everything went well, and fourteen or 
fifteen of the enemy's ships were taken. "I bargained for twenty," said 
Nelson; then he added, "I hope none of our ships have struck?" Hardy 
assured him that not one had done so. Nelson continued in a stronger 
voice, "Anchor, Hardy; the ships must all anchor: do you make the 
signal." His articulation soon became difficult, and at half-past four he 
expired, leaving a name unrivalled even in the glorious annals of the 
British navy. 

At the close of the action, twenty ships of the line had struck, inclu- 
ding the Santissima Trinidada, of one hundred and thirty guns, and the 
Santa Anna, of one hundred and twelve ; but one of the seventy -fours, 
the Achille, blew up after she had surrendered. Had Nelson's (lying 
instructions, to bring the fleet to anchor, been obeyed, the remaining 
nineteen prizes would have been brought safely to Spithead : but the or- 
der was neglected, and, early on the morning of the 22nd, a strong 
southerly wind arose, which rendered the captured vessels unmanage- 
able ; some drifted ashore and were destroyed by the waves, others 
were sunk by the British, and two, having been blown off, were taken 
by the French frigates. Four, only, reached Gibraltar in safety ; but the 
prisoners, including the land forces on board, amounted to twenty thou- 
sand men. Although the prizes were thus lost to the British, through an 
unfortunate neglect of Nelson's orders, they were also .lost to the enemy, 
whose fleet was almost wholly destroyed. Four ships of the line, which 
escaped from the battle of Trafalgar, were captured by Sir Richard 
Strachan on the 2nd of November, so that out of thirty-three sail of the 
line, twenty-four surrendered to the British ; and the remaining nine 
were so much injured as to be unfitted for any immediate service. 

No words can describe the mingled feelings of joy and grief, exulta- 
tion and despondency, which pervaded the British Empire, when news 
was received of the battle of Trafalgar. The fleet had achieved one of 
the greatest victories on record, and freed the country from the danger 
of an invasion ; but, on the other hand, the people were called to mourn 
the death of the hero by whom this great triumph had been gained. All 
the honors which a grateful country could bestow, were heaped on the 
memory of Lord Nelson. His brother was made an earl, with a grant 
of six thousand pounds a year ; ten thousand pounds was voted to each 
of his sisters, and one hundred thousand pounds for the purchase of an 
estate. His remains were consigned to the tomb with great pomp, in St. 
Paul's cathedral : and when his flag was about to be lowered into the 
grave, the sailors, who assisted at the ceremony, with one accord rent it 
in pieces, that each might preserve a fragment as long as he lived. 

While these momentous events were taking place, Napoleon had 
pressed forward with great energy toward the Rhine. Previous to his 

1805.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 185 

advance, however, he had renewed his negotiations with Prussia, and 
made great efforts to effect a treaty with that power. But the cabinet 
of Berlin could not be induced by Napoleon's arguments to go beyond its 
policy of neutrality. During the progress of the negotiation, the Russia^ 
minister presented to the king a request from the Emperor Alexander, 
for permission to pass his troops through the Prussian territories on their 
route to Bavaria : this request was peremptorily refused, and Napoleon 
was thereby enabled with ease to reach the Bavarian plains in advance 
of the Muscovite army. The forces which he had now assembled were 
the most formidable in respect of numbers, discipline and equipment, that 
had ever yet taken the field in modern Europe. They consisted of one 
hundred and eighty thousand men, divided into eight corps, under the 
command of the most distinguished marshals of the Empire ; and, such 
was the rapidity and secrecy of their march, they were far advanced on 
their way to the Rhine, before it was known to the cabinets of London or 
Vienna that they had broken up their camp on the heights of Boulogne. 
The several corps, with the exception of that imder Bernadotte, thus far 
met with no obstacles on their route, as they were traversing their own 
or a friendly territory ; but the corps under that officer, in its march 
across Germany from Hanover to Bavaria, came upon the Prussian state 
of Anspach. Napoleon had foreseen this difficulty, and provided for it, 
by giving Bernadotte positive orders to disregard the Prussian neutrality. 
These orders were punctually executed, in defiance of the threats and 
remonstrances of the local authorities ; and Bernadotte, with sixty thou- 
sand men, including a division of Bavarians and the corps of Marmont, 
traversed the territory of Prussia and assembled at Eichstadt on the 
8th of October. By this master-stroke, the French troops were placed 
in great force in the rear of an Austrian army, eighty thousand strong, 
under General Mack, who, ignorant of Napoleon's movements, had 
incautiously crossed the Inn and was reposing in fancied security around 
the ramparts of Ulm. 

The king and cabinet of Prussia were transported with astonishment 
and indignation, when they received intelligence of the violation of their 
neutrality by the French troops. They at once learned the humiliating 
truth, which had long been obvious to the rest of Europe, but which an 
overweening vanity that Napoleon well knew how to cajole had hitherto 
hidden from themselves, that their alliance with France had been con- 
tracted by the Emperor solely for his own advantage ; that he neither 
respected nor feared their power, and that after having made them his 
fawning and subservient instruments in subjugating other states, he would 
probably end by overturning the independence of their own. They 
immediately prohibited all intercourse with the French embassy, de- 
manded satisfaction from the French minister resident at Berlin, and sent 
forward a free permission to the Russian troops to traverse the Prussian 
territories in their march to Bavaria. 

When General Mack ascertained that Napoleon was approaching, he 
disposed his forces at Ulm, Memmingen and Stockach, with advanced 
posts in the defiles of the Black Forest, contemplating an attack only in 
front, and expecting to be able to resist the invasion in his defensive posi- 
tion. He was yet ignorant of the manoauvre by which Bernadotte at first, 
and afterward Davoust and Soult, had taken ground in his rear with a 
hundred thousand men, where they were establishing themselves at 


A.ugsbourg, while Napoleon, with the remainder of his army, was press- 
ing on him from the west, on both banks of the Danube. Mack was not 
long in discovering his desperate situation ; but, lacking the resolution 
to adopt the only course of safety that was open to him, a retreat into the 
Tyrol, he attempted to secure himself by intrenchments at Ulm, and sent 
orders to General Auffemberg to join him at that place. This brave offi- 
cer was then at Innspruch with four squadrons of cuirassiers and twelve 
battalions of grenadiers, and while proceeding to Ulm, in obedience to 
Mack's requisition, suddenly found himself enveloped by eight thousand 
French cavalry under Murat. In this extremity, Auffemberg threw his 
ivhole division into one immense square, with the cuirassiers at its angles, 
and awaited the attack. The French dragoons came on like a tempest, 
and speedily swept away the comparatively small number of Austrian 
cavalry ; but the infantry stood firm, and, with a sustained fire of mus- 
ketry, that reminded the French of their own achievement at the Pyra- 
mids, mowed down their assailants by hundreds. After the combat had 
been for a long time maintained in this manner, with severe loss to the 
French, Oudinot arrived on the ground at the head of a brigade of French 
grenadiers, well provided with artillery. The fatigued Austrians, un- 
able to endure the onset of fresh infantry, were soon disordered, and 
several thousands of the French forced their way into the square : but 
Auffemberg still succeeded in forming a smaller square, and making 
good his retreat with a part of his troops to some marshes in the neigh- 
borhood of the Danube. He, however, left three thousand prisoners, 
many standards, and all his artillery in the hands of the enemy. 

Napoleon began now to close upon the Austrian army, and he gained 
several minor victories over their detached parties, as he gradually drove 
them in upon Ulm. On the llth of October, Ney encountered a body 
of Austrians, twenty thousand strong, at Hasslach, and a desperate action 
ensued, in which the French lost a part of their artillery, but at length 
retired in good order from the field, with two thousand Austrian prisoners. 
On the same day, Soult marched against Memmingen, which was garri- 
soned by four thousand Austrians ; and on the 13th, having completed 
his investment of the place, he summoned it to surrender. The Austri- 
ans, discouraged by the host of enemies that were gathering around them, 
and being destitute of provisions, immediately capitulated. By the 16th, 
every avenue of escape was closed against Mack, and the main body of 
the Austrian army ; yet, as the Archduke Ferdinand was with the troops, 
it was deemed indispensable that an effort should be made at all hazards 
to secure his retreat, by cutting a path through the French lines into 

On the day that this desperate resolution was formed by the Austrian 
generals, Ney commenced an attack on the bridge and abbey of Elchin- 
gen, where fifteen thousand Austrians were posted with forty pieces of 
cannon. The battle was contested with great bravery, and, in the event, 
the French columns, after many hours of desperate fighting, forced the 
Austrians back upon their main body with a loss of thirty-five hundred 
men, killed, wounded and prisoners. The resistance of these gallant 
troops, however, gave the Archduke Ferdinand an opportunity to make 
his escape. During the combat at Elchingen, he sallied from Ulm at the 
head of ten thousand cavalry, which, by moving in two several directions, 
created a diversion that enabled him, with a few hundred horse, to gaio 

1805.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 187 

the Bohemian frontiers ; but his deliverance was purchased by the sacri- 
fice of nearly all the large body of cavalry that aided it, more than nine 
thousand of them having fallen into the hands of the French. 

As Mack was now deprived of all hope of relief, Napoleon summoned 
him to surrender ; and after a brief negotiation, the entire Austrian army 
capitulated and laid down their arms. It is hardly possible to speak in 
terms of exaggeration of this astonishing victory : with a loss of not more 
than eight thousand men, Napoleon had taken or destroyed nearly eighty 
thousand of the best troops in the Austrian dominions. 

While these stupendous events were paralyzing the Imperial strength 
in the centre of Germany, the campaign had opened in Italy. The 
Aulic Council, from whose errors the European nations suffered so often 
and so deeply, and who could learn nothing even from their own experi- 
ence, committed three capital faults in their plan of operations. In the 
first place, they had ordered Mack with eighty thousand men to push for- 
ward into an exposed situation, and bear the weight of the whole French 
army in the valley of the Danube ; secondly, they compelled the Arch- 
duke Charles to remain inactive on the Adige with ninety thousand men, 
in presence of Massena who had only fifty thousand ; and thirdly, twenty 
thousand men were kept scattered over the Tyrol without any enemy ai 
all to occupy them. 

As soon as the cabinet of Vienna ascertained Mack's dangerous situa 
tion, they ordered the Archduke Charles to dispatch thirty regiments 
across the Tyrol toward Germany to his assistance ; and the Austrian 
army in Italy was thus reduced to nearly an equality of numbers with 
Massena. The latter general occupied the city of Verona and its castles, 
on the right bank of the Adige, while the Archduke held the suburbs of 
the town, on the left bank of that river. The bridge between the two 
camps was strongly barricaded and carefully guarded at each end. Mas- 
sena, stimulated by the orders of Napoleon and the news of his success, 
at length resolved to assume the offensive by forcing the bridge ; and at 
midnight, on the 18th of October, after removing his own barricades as 
silently as possible, he caused petards to be placed against those of the 
Austrians. He then commenced a violent cannonade along the banks of 
the river, and while the enemy's attention was thus diverted, the petards 
were exploded and the barricades thrown down. The French troops 
rushed forward, but found to their surprise a yawning gulf between them 
and the opposite bank, a section of the bridge having been cut away by 
the Austrians behind their barricades. In the confusion of the moment, 
however, and under cover of a thick fog which the rising sun had not yet 
dispelled, the French soldiers, by means of boats and planks, made good 
their passage, and secured a footing on the Austrian shore, whence the 
Archduke, after a whole day's fighting, was unable to dislodge them. He 
therefore withdrew to the position of Caldiero, which he had been for 
some time fortifying, and where he considered himself safe from any at- 
tack ; and, indeed, so it proved : for after three entire days of the most 
desperate fighting, in which both armies suffered severe losses, though 
the greater portion was on the side of the French, Massena was compelled 
to retire ; and but for the progress of events in Germany, which required 
the Archduke's presence there, the French marshal would have been 
unable to retain his position on the Adige. 

The Archduke John had arrived at the head-quarters of the Austrian 


army, and brought official intelligence of the disaster at Ulm, and the 
consequent exposure of Vienna. Justly alarmed at this news, the Arch- 
duke Charles made immediate preparations to fall back and cover the 
Austrian capital ; but to conceal his movements from Massena, while he 
pushed forward by forced marches his heavy artillery and baggage, he 
made demonstrations of following up his success at Caldiero, which com- 
pletely deceived the French commander and induced him to take a 
defensive position in front of Verona. When the main body of the Aus- 
trian army, with all its incumbrances of baggage and artillery, was suf- 
ficiently advanced, the rear-guard broke up from their intrenchments and 
followed the retreating columns ; and although Massena was not long in 
discovering his mistake, and pushed on in pursuit, the Austrians had 
gained a full day's march, and he could not overtake them in force. 

Napoleon followed up his success at Ulm, by pressing through Bavaria. 
He arrived at Munich on the 24th of October, where he was received with 
every demonstration of joy, while the leading corps under Bernadotte, 
Davoust, Murat and Marmont hastened toward the hereditary states of 
Austria. The Iser was soon passed ; the French eagles were borne in 
triumph through the forest of Hohenlinden, and nothing arrested the march 
of the victorious troops until they reached the rocky banks of the Inn, and 
appeared before the fortress ofBrannau; and the detention here was but 
brief, for the Austrian garrison soon evacuated the place. At the same 
time, Ney and Augereau were ordered into the Tyrol, to drive the Aus- 
trian forces from the vast fortress which its mountains composed. 

The Russians under KutusofF and Benningsen on the one side, and the 
Austrians from Italy and the Tyrol under the Archdukes Charles and 
John on the other, were now approaching to cover Vienna, and courier 
after courier was dispatched to hasten their movements : the French troops 
also were rapidly moving toward the same common centre ; and universal 
alarm spread through the Austrian dominions. 

Meantime, Prussia assumed a menacing attitude : the king openly in- 
clined to hostile measures, Prince Louis vehemently declared his desire 
for war, and the inhabitants echoed his wishes. Haugwitz, the author of 
the temporizing system, soon lost his consideration in the cabinet, and 
Hardenberg was intrusted with the direction of affairs. At this juncture, 
the Emperor Alexander arrived at Berlin, and exerted his utmost influ- 
ence to induce the king to embrace a more manly and courageous policy 
than he had hitherto pursued. This proceeding decided the king, and a 
convention was signed on the 3rd of November between the two monarchs, 
stipulating that the treaty of Luneville should be taken as the basis of the 
arrangement, and all the acquisitions which France had since made were 
to be wrested from her; while Switzerland and Holland were to be 
restored to their independence. Haugwitz was to be intrusted with noti- 
fying this convention to Napoleon, with authority, in case of his acceding 
to it, to offer him the former friendship and alliance of Prussia ; but, if he 
refused, 10 declare war, with an intimation that hostilities would com- 
mence on the 15th of December. 

After the conclusion of this treaty, Alexander repaired to Gallicia, to 
assume in person the command of the Russian army of reserve which was 
advancing through that* province to the support of Kutusoff; but, unfor- 
tunately, the cabinet of Prussia still lacked resolution to interfere at once 
and decidedly in the war. Haugwitz did not set out on his mission unti* 


the 14th of November, the Prussian armies made no advance to the Da- 
nube, and Napoleon was suffered to proceed without interruption toward 
Vienna, while eighty thousand Prussian veterans remained inactive in 
Silesia on his left flank ; a force which, acting in cooperation with the 
Austrian and Russian troops, might readily have thrown back the French 
Emperor, with disaster and disgrace, to the banks of the Rhine. 

While Napoleon thus triumphantly approached the Austrian capital, 
Ney and Augereau, with almost equal facility, carried everything before 
them in the Tyrol ; where, within little more than three weeks, they 
expelled the Imperialists from what had long been considered the impreg- 
nable bulwark of the Austrian empire, though it was garrisoned by twenty- 
five thousand regular troops and at least an equal number of well-trained 
militia : more than half of this entire force fell into the hands of the inva- 
ders. Ney then marched to Salzbourg, to form a junction with Massena, 
and Augereau withdrew to Ulm to observe the Prussians, while the occu- 
pation of the Tyrol was committed to the Bavarian troops. Napoleon still 
continued his advance, and on the 6th of November, established his head- 
quarters at Lintz, the capital of Upper Austria. Here, he remained a 
short time to give some repose to his troops and introduce a new organ- 
ization, with a view of destroying the Russian corps under Kutusoff; for 
which purpose, four divisions, amounting to twenty thousand men, were 
passed over to the left bank of the Danube and placed under the command 
of Mortier, whose instructions were to advance cautiously, and send out 
videttes in every direction, until he should gain a point whence he might 
effectually surprise the Russian commander. 

At Lintz, Napoleon also received the Elector of Bavaria, who hastened 
to that city to render the homage due to the deliverer of his dominions ; 
and on the same day, Count Giulay arrived from the Emperor of Austria 
with proposals for an armistice, having reference to a general peace ; for 
the cabinet of Vienna, despairing of the arrival in time of the Archduke 
and Kutusoff, began to fear the destruction of their capital. Napoleon 
received the envoy courteously ; but, after remarking that a beaten army, 
unable to defend a single position, could not with propriety offer terms to 
a conqueror at the head of two hundred thousand men, he sent him back 
with a letter to the ^Emperor, in which he proposed to treat for peace on 
condition that the Russians should forthwith evacuate the Austrian terri- 
tory and retire into Poland, that the levies in Hungary should be dis- 
banded, and Tyrol and Venice ceded to the French dominions. If these 
terms were not accepted, he averred that he would continue his march 
toward Vienna without an hour's intermission. 

The proposal of such rigorous conditions showed the allies that they 
had no hope, but in a bold prosecution of the war; they, therefore, dis- 
patched the most urgent entreaties to the Russian head-quarters to hasten 
the advance of their reserves, while a strong rear-guard took post at Am- 
stetten, to secure a passage through the narrow defile of the Danube for 
the main body and artillery of the allied army covering Vienna. This 
rear-guard, however, was attacked by Oudinot and Murat, and, after a 
bloody conflict, was forced to retreat ; but not until it had gained time for 
the allied army to arrive at the rocky ridge behind St. Polten, the last 
defensible position in front of Vienna, and which commanded the junction 
of the lateral road, running from Italy through Leoben, with the great 
route down the valley of the Danube to the capital. Napoleon saw the 


necessity of wresting this important position from the allies, and directed 
sixty thousand men to turn their right flank, fifty thousand to manoeuvre 
on the left, while he in person, at the head of his Imperial guard and the 
corps of Soult assailed them in front. As it was impossible for KutusofF 
to maintain his ground against such overwhelming numbers, he resolved 
to abandon the capital and withdraw to the left bank of the river. 

Skilfully concealing his intention from the enemy, he moved his whole 
army across the Danube at Mautern, over the only bridge which traverses 
that river between Lintz and Vienna ; and having burned it behind him, 
succeeded, for some days at least, in throwing an impassable barrier be- 
tween his troops and their indefatigable pursuers. He continued his retreat 
in good order until he reached the vicinity of Stein, where, on the llth of 
November, his rear-guard was attacked by the whole advanced division 
of Mortier's corps. The combat soon became warm ; fresh troops arrived 
on both sides, and the grenadiers fought man to man with undaunted reso- 
lution. Toward noon, intelligence was spread that the Russian division 
of DoctorofF had, by a circuitous march, gained Mortier's rear ; and the 
latter, finding himself thus attacked on both sides, and separated from the 
remainder of his cojps, resolved to dislodge this new assailant. He ac- 
cordingly made a spirited attack on DoctorofF's troops, but he was unable 
to force them from their position until after several hours of hard fighting, 
during which he lost three eagles and two-thirds of his men. Dupont at 
length came up with the remainder of his corps and forced the Russians 
to retreat. 

Napoleon now ordered Lannes and Murat to advance upon Vienna and 
endeavor to gain possession of the bridge over the Danube. At the same 
time, the Emperor Francis retired from his capital, after confiding the 
charge of it to Count Wurbna, his grand chamberlain. The citizens were 
overwhelmed with consternation when they found themselves deserted by 
the Emperor, and assembled in tumultuous crowds demanding arms to 
defend the capital ; but it was too late. The means of resistance no 
longer remained ; and a deputation was sent to Napoleon's head-quarters 
to treat for a surrender. 

Retaining a sufficient force to secure the occupation of Vienna, Napo- 
leon ordered Murat, Bernadotte and Mortier to follow up KutusofF's retreat, 
and prevent his junction with the Archduke Charles. Murat, deeming it 
improbable that he could overtake KutusofF, had recourse to a stratagem, 
and sent a flag of truce to the Russian head-quarters, announcing that an 
armistice had been concluded at Vienna : but the wily Russian proved 
an overmatch for Murat in diplomacy. He professed great joy at the 
news, which he knew could not be true, and not only pretended to enter 
cordially into the negotiation, but sent the Emperor's aid-de-camp,, Win- 
zingerode, to propose terms of peace. Murat fell into his own snare ; for 
while he stayed his pursuit to consider these proposals, KutusofF, after 
ordering Bagrathion to remain behind with eight thousand men, pushed 
forward the main body of his army to Znaim, where he was enabled to 
open communications not only with the Austrians, but also with the reen- 
forcing Russian troops. 

Napoleon was greatly enraged when he found that his generals had 
been thus foiled, and ordered an immediate attack on Bagrathion 's rear- 
guard. This brave Russian commander soon found himself assailed in 
front and on both flanks by Oudinot, Murat, Lannes and Soult, with no 

1805.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 191 

less than forty thousand men ; yet he maintained his position for twelve 
hours, and finally retreated in good order with five thousand of his troops, 
leaving behind him three thousand killed, wounded or prisoners. Nothing 
now could prevent the junction of the allied forces, which took place at 
Wischau on the 19th of November. Their entire strength amounted to 
seventy-five thousand men ; and a division of the Russian Imperial guard 
under the Grandduke Constantine, with a detachment under Benningsen, 
was hourly expected, which would raise their numbers to ninety thousand. 
Napoleon, when he found that the junction of the allies was inevitable, 
took the most energetic measures to close the campaign by a general 
action, and moved toward Austerlitz with all his disposable forces for that 
purpose. In order to gain time for the requisite concentration of his 
troops, he proposed to enter into a conference with Alexander for an ar- 
mistice, and the Russian Emperor, equally anxious for a brief delay, dis- 
patched an ambassador on this fruitless errand. While the negotiation 
was in progress, Count Haugwitz arrived with the ultimatum of Prussia ; 
but Napoleon was not disposed to treat on this subject until he had made 
some further advance in the affairs of the campaign, and recommended 
Haugwitz to repair to Vienna and open his conference with Talleyrand. 

On the 1st of December, Napoleon had assembled his masses, to the 
number of ninety thousand veteran troops, midway between Brunn and 
Austerlitz. His left wing, under Lannes, was stationed at the foot of a 
chain of hills, having a powerful guard of cavalry. Next to these was 
the corps of Bernadotte, and between him and the centre were the grena- 
diers of Oudinot, the cavalry of Murat, and the Imperial guard under 
Bessieres. The centre, under the command of Soult, occupied the villages 
near the heights of Pratzen. The right wing, under Davoust, was thrown 
back in a semicircle, with its reserves at the Abbey of Raygern in the 
rear, and its front line stretching to the Lake Moenitz. A succession of 
marshes covered the front of the whole position. 

The allies, in their plan of attack, decided to turn the right flank of the 
French army so as, in case of success, to cut them off from Vienna and 
drive them to the Bohemian mountains ; and they sought to effect this by 
one of the most hazardous operations in war a flank march in column in 
front of a concentrated enemy, and that enemy Napoleon. Accordingly, 
early in the morning of December 2nd, they moved forward in five col- 
umns obliquely across the French position, while the reserve, under the 
Grandduke Constantine, occupied the heights in front of Austerlitz. The 
moment that Napoleon saw this suicidal manoeuvre undertaken, he ex- 
claimed, " That army is my own !" 

A heavy mist at first enveloped both armies, and for a time obscured 
their movements from view ; but at length the sun arose in unclouded 
brilliancy that "sun of Austerlitz" which Napoleon so often afterward 
apostrophized, as illuminating the brightest period of his life and the 
magnitude of the error committed by the allies was plainly revealed : 
they had abandoned the heights of Pratzen, the key to their position, and 
exposed the flank of their whole army, in detached masses, to the delibe- 
rate 1 attacks of the French veterans. It was impossible, under such cir- 
cumstances, that the victory could remain long in doubt. The Russian 
and Austrian troops fought with desperate valor against their disadvan- 
tages, and in parts of the field gained a temporary success ; but in the 
event, almost every attack of the French prevailed; the allied army was 



broken and routed at all points, and at nightfall they were retreating in 
almost utter disorganization, having lost in killed, wounded and prisoners, 
thirty thousand men, besides a hundred and eighty pieces of cannon, four 
hundred caissons and forty-five standards. The loss of the French did 
not exceed twelve thousand men. 

Such was the effect produced by this great disaster that, during a 
council held at midnight, at the Russian Emperor's lodgings, it was 
doubted whether hostilities could be prolonged with any hope of success, 
and by four o'clock in the morning, Prince Lichtenstein was dispatched 
to Napoleon's head-quarters to propose an armistice. There was no 
difficulty in coming to an arrangement. Napoleon, notwithstanding the 
extent of his victory, was well aware of the danger that might yet ensue 
from a combination against him, of Prussia with the other European 
powers; he knew that the Archduke Charles, with eighty thousand 
troops, was already threatening Vienna, and that Hungary was rising 
en masse at the approach of the invaders. On the 4th of December, an 
interview took place between the Emperor Francis and Napoleon, which 
lasted for two hours, and ended in an agreement that Presburg should be 
the seat of the negotiations for peace, that an armistice should imme- 
diately take place at all points, and that the Russian troops should retire 
by slow marches to their own country. Savary was sent to the Emperor 
Alexander to request his consent to these terms, which he granted with- 
out hesitation, and Napoleon stopped the advance of the French columns. 

On the 6th of December, the armistice was formally concluded at 
Austerlitz, by which it was stipulated that, until the conclusion of a 
general peace, the French should continue to occupy those portions of 
Upper and Lower Austria, Tyrol, Styria, Carinthia, Carniola and Mora- 
via, then in their possession ; that the Russians should evacuate Moravia 
and Hungary in fifteen days, and Gallicia within a month ; that all in- 
surrectionary movements in Hungary and Bohemia should be stopped, 
and no armed force of any other power permitted to enter the Austrian 
territories. This latter clause was levelled at the Prussian armaments, 
and it afforded the cabinet of Berlin a pretext for withdrawing from a 
coalition into which they had entered at so untoward a period. 

Alexander no sooner found himself delivered from the toils of his 
redoubtable adversary, than he sent the Grandduke Constantine and 
Prince DolgorOncki to Berlin, offering to place all his forces at the dis- 
position of the Prussian cabinet, if they would vigorously prosecute the 
war : but the diplomatist to whom the fortunes of Prussia were now com- 
mitted, had very different objects in view, and he was prepared, by an 
act of matchless perfidy, to put the finishing stroke to that system of 
tergiversation and deceit, by which, for ten years, the cabinet of Berlin 
had been disgraced. It has already been related that Haugwitz had 
reached the head-quarters of Napoleon with instructions to declare war 
against France ; but the battle of Austerlitz had changed the face of 
affairs, and Haugwitz resolved not only to withdraw from the coalition, 
but to secure a part of the spoils of his former allies; and if he could 
not chase the French standards beyond the Rhine, at least to wrest from 
England those continental possessions which she now appeared in no 
condition to defend. Napoleon soon ascertained the disposition of the 
minister, and offered to incorporate Hanover with the Prussian dominions 
in exchange for some of the detached southern possessions of Pmssia, 


which were to be ceded to France and Bavaria, provided she would 
abandon her doubtful policy, and enter heart and hand into the French 
alliance. Haugwitz eagerly accepted these proposals and signed a for- 
mal treaty for carrying them into effect. 

The negotiations between Austria and Napoleon were soon brought to 
a close. By the treaty of Presburg, she was in a manner isolated from 
France, and to all appearance, rendered incapable of again interfering 
in the contests of Western Europe. She was compelled to cede the 
Tyrol and Inviertel to Bavaria ; to relinquish the Continental dominions 
of Venice and all her accessions in Italy, together with Voralberg, Ech- 
stadt, and various towns and lesser principalities in Germany. The 
electors of Wirtemberg and Bavaria were made kings of their respective 
provinces, and the Emperor Francis was forced to engage, both as chief 
of the Empire, and as co-sovereign, "to throw no obstacles in the way 
of any acts which the Kings of Wirtemberg and Bavaria, in their capacity 
of sovereigns, might think proper to adopt :" a clause which, by providing 
for the independent authority of these infant kingdoms, virtually dis- 
solved the Germanic Empire. The secret articles of the treaty were 
still more humiliating. It was by them provided, that Austria should 
pay a contribution of forty millions of francs in addition to an equal sum 
already levied by the French in the conquered provinces, and also in 
addition to the loss of the immense military stores and magazines which 
had fallen into the hands of the victors during the war, and which were 
either to be sent off to France or redeemed by a heavy ransom. 

This treaty was followed by a measure hitherto unprecedented in 
European history the pronouncing sentence of dethronement against an 
independent sovereign for no other cause than his having, during the late 
campaign, contemplated hostilities against the Emperor of France. On the 
26th of December, a menacing proclamation issued from Presburg against 
the House of Naples. In this document Napoleon announced that Mar- 
shal St. Cyr would march to Naples " to punish the treason of a criminal 
queen, and precipitate her from the throne. We have pardoned" it con- 
tinued, " that infatuated king, who has thrice done everything to ruin 
himself. Shall we pardon him a fourth time ? Shall we a fourth time 
trust a court without faith, without honor, without reason ? No ! The 
dynasty of Naples lias ceased to reign ; its existence is incompatible with 
the repose of Europe and the honor of my crown." 

The dissolution of the European confederacy against Napoleon which 
its author had so assiduously labored to construct, and from which he ex- 
pected such important results was fatal to Mr. Pitt. His health, long 
weakened by the fatigue and excitement incident to his position, sunk 
under the disappointment of this failure of his projects ; and he expired at 
his house in London, on the 23rd of January, 1806, exclaiming with his 
latest breath, " Alas, my country !" Chateaubriand has said, " while all 
other reputations, even that of Napoleon, are on the decline, the fame of 
Mr. Pitt alone is continually increasing, and seems to derive fresh lustre 
from every vicissitude of fortune." But this eulogium was not drawn 
forth by the greatness and constancy merely, of the British statesman : 
the justness of his principles, of which subsequent events have afforded 
proof, is the true cause of the growth and stability of his fame. But for 
the despotism of Napoleon, followed, as it was, by the freedom of the 
Restoration, the revolt of the barricades and the military government of 


Louis Philippe, his reputation for accurate judgment and foresight, in 
regard to foreign transactions, would have been incomplete ; without the 
passage of the Reform Bill, and the subsequent ascendency of democratic 
ambition in Great Britain, his worth in domestic government would never 
have been appreciated. Every hour, abroad and at home, is now illustra- 
ting the truth of his principles. He was formerly admired by a party 
in England as the champion of aristocratic rights ; he is now looked back 
upon by the nation as the last steady asserter of universal freedom : for- 
merly, his doctrines were approved chiefly by the great and the affluent , 
they are now embraced by the generous, the thoughtful, the unprejudiced 
of every rank by all who regard passing events with the eye of historic 
inquiry, or are attached to liberty, not as the means of elevating a party 
to power, but as the birthright of the human race. To his speeches we 
now turn as to the oracles fraught with prophetic warning of future disas- 
ter. It is contrast which gives brightness to the colors of history ; it is 
experience which brings conviction to the cold lessons of political wisdom j 
and thus, though many eloquent eulogiums have been pronounced on the 
memory of Mr. Pitt, all panegyrics are lifeless, compared to that fur. 
nished by Earl Grey's administration. 



THE peace of Presburg seemed to have finally subjected the continent 
of Europe to the Empire of France. The formidable coalition of the 
several powers was dissolved ; Austria had, apparently, received an irre- 
parable wound ; Prussia, though irritated, was overawed ; and the Auto- 
crat of Russia was indebted to the forbearance of the victor for the means 
of escaping from the theatre of his triumph. Sweden, in indignant silence, 
had withdrawn to the shores of Gothland ; Naples was overrun ; Switzer- 
land was silent ; and Spain consented to yield her fleets and treasures to 
the conqueror. England, unsubdued in arms and with unflinching reso- 
lution, continued the strife ; but, after the prostration of her allies, and 
the destruction of the French marine, the war appeared to have no longer 
an intelligible object ; while the death of the great statesman who had 
ever been the uncompromising foe of the Revolution, and the soul of the 
confederacies opposed to it, led to an expectation that a more pacific sys- 
tem of government might be anticipated from his successors. 

The death of Mr. Pitt dissolved the administration of which he was 
the head. His towering genius could ill bear a partner in power or 
a rival in renown. Equals, he had none; friends, few; and with the 
exception of Lord Melville, perhaps no statesman ever possessed his un- 
reserved confidence. There were many men of ability and resolution in 
his cabinet, but none of sufficient strength to take the helm when it drop- 
ped from his hands. In addition, also, to the comparative weakness of 
the ministry after Mr. Pitt's decease, the state of public opinion rendered 
it doubtful whether any new administration, not founded on a coalition 


of parties, could command general support. Under these circumstances, 
the king sent a messenger to Lord Grenville, requesting his attendance 
at Buckingham House, to confer with his majesty on the formation of a 
government. Lord Grenville, on repairing thither, suggested Mr. Fox 
as the proper person to be consulted. "I thought so, and I meant it so," 
replied the king ; and the forming of an administration was forthwith 
intrusted to these two distinguished men. 

Mr. Fox, though entitled, by his talents and influence, to the highest 
appointment under the crown, contented himself with the Department of 
Foreign Affairs, considering that to be the situation in which the greatest 
embarrassments would occur, and where his own principles were likely 
soonest to lead to important results. Lord Grenville was made First 
Lord of the Treasury ; Mr. Erskine, Lord Chancellor ; Lord Howick, 
First Lord of the Admiralty ; Mr. Windham, Secretary at War : and 
Earl Spencer, Secretary of State for the Home Department. The cabinet 
exhibited a splendid array of ability ; but many observed, with regret, 
that all the members of the precedent administration were excluded from 
office, and anticipated that a coalition which thus seemed likely to depart 
from the path of its predecessors, could not long retain the power it had 
acquired. Nevertheless, no immediate change took place in the measures 
of the government ; and Europe saw with surprise that the men who had 
invariably characterized the war as unjust and impolitic, themselves pre- 
pared to carry it on with the samo energy as the former ministers : a 
striking fact, significant alike of the soundness of Mr. Pitt's policy, and of 
the candor of the party who now directed public affairs. 

The return of Napoleon to Paris, where he arrived on the 26th of 
January, was an opportune event for the financial affairs of the country, 
for the nation was on the verge of bankruptcy ; and nothing but the 
Emperor's extraordinary efforts to meet the crisis, together with the timely 
conclusion of the war, which relieved the demands on the treasury, could 
have averted that calamity. After the public apprehensions on this sub- 
ject were somewhat allayed, the municipality of Paris resolved to erect a 
monument, commemorative of the campaign of Austerlitz ; and five hun- 
dred pieces of cannon, taken from the Austrians, were accordingly con- 
verted into the beautiful column in the Place Vendome. 

Napoleon soon proceeded to execute his purpose against Naples, and 
dispatched Joseph Bonaparte, at the head of fifty thousand men, to take 
possession of the throne in his own name. As resistance was impossible, 
the future sovereign of Naples made his entry into that city, on the 15th 
of February ; and on the 14th of April, he received the decree by which 
Napoleon also created him king of the two Sicilies. At the same time, 
the Venetian States were definitively annexed to the kingdom of Italy, and 
Napoleon's son-in-law, Eugene 3eauharnois, called to the throne. The 
beautiful Pauline, Napoleon's sister, and wife of Prince Borghese, re- 
ceived the duchy of Guastalla ; the Princess Eliza was created Prin- 
cess of Lucca Piombino ; Murat was made Grand-Duke of Berg, with a 
considerable territory ; and the Emperor reserved to himself twelve du- 
chies in Italy, which he bestowed on the principal officers of his army. 

Although Joseph Bonaparte was thus easily placed on the throne, he 
soon had occasion to learn the precarious tenure of his power. He had 
hardly returned to Naples from a visit into Sicily, when an English fleet 
wrested from him the island of Capri, which bounds the horizon south of 



.he Bay of Naples, and nothing but the generous forbearance of the Eng- 
lish commander, Sir Sidney Smith, saved his capital and palace from a 
bomoardment amid the light of a festive illumination. A more serious 
disaster soon occurred in the southern provinces of his dominions. An 
insurrection had broken out in Calabria, which threatened to overturn his 
government in that quarter ; and the English commanders in Sicily re- 
solved on an expedition by sea and land, to relieve the fortress of Gaeta, 
and encourage the insurgents, a part of whom were there besieged by the 
French troops under Massena. In the beginning of July, an expedition 
also set sail from Palermo, consisting of five thousand men commanded 
by Sir John Stuart, who landed at St. Euphemia. The English general 
here learned that a French force, under Regnier, seven thousand five 
hundred strong, was encamped at Maida, about ten miles distant, and he 
immediately moved forward to attack them. Both parties contested the 
field with great bravery ; but at length British intrepidity prevailed 
over the French numbers and enthusiasm, and Regnier was forced to 
retreat, leaving one half of his army on the field, in killed, wounded and 

The battle of Maida, though it hardly attracted the notice of the 
French people, dazzled as they were by the blaze of Ulm and Auster- 
litz, had an important bearing on the progress of events : for, insignifi- 
cant as were the numbers of the troops, and the immediate results of 
the contest, the victory gave proof that the English soldiers were an 
overmatch for Napoleon's veterans : it created an ardent desire through- 
out the British Empire, for an opportunity to measure their national 
strength with the conquerors of Continental Europe on a larger field ; and 
it went far to reconcile all parties to a vigorous continuance of the war. 

The conquest of Naples, and the assumption of the Sicilian throne by 
the brother of Napoleon, together with the other partitions of Italy as 
already related, were not the only usurpations that followed the peace 
of Presburg. The old commonwealth of Holland was also destined to 
receive a master from the victorious Emperor, in the person of his brother 
Louis, who, as " in the existing state of Europe, a hereditary govern- 
ment could alone guaranty the independence, and secure the civil and 
religious privileges of the realm," was, on the 5th of June, declared 
King of Holland. The same day on which this event took place, an am- 
bassador arrived at Paris from the Grand Signior of Turkey, to congratu- 
late Napoleon on his accession to the Imperial dignity, and friendly 
relations were soon established between the two powers. 

The victory of Trafalgar, with the subsequent achievement of Sir 
Richard Strachan, had almost entirely destroyed the combined fleet that 
issued from Cadiz ; but the squadrons of Rochefort and Brest still re- 
mained, and Napoleon resolved to turn their resources to account. Half 
of the Brest fleet, consisting of eleven ships of the line, were victualled 
for six months ; and, in the middle of December, 1805, when the Eng- 
lish blockading fleet had been blown off the station by violent winds, 
these eleven ships put to sea accompanied by four frigates, and in two 
divisions were dispatched, the one to St. Domingo, and the other to the 
Cape of Good Hope. Admiral Duckworth pursued the former of these 
squadrons, with seven ships of the line and four frigates, and on the 6th 
of February attacked them in the harbor of St. Domingo. The French 
frigates made their escape, but three of the ships of the line were cap- 


tured, and the other two drifted ashore and were burned. Of the six 
ships of the line dispatched for the Cape of Good Hope, two were cap- 
tured by the British, one was driven ashore and burned, another wag 
chased into Havana in a disabled condition, and two made good their re- 
treat to France. About the same time, a British squadron under Sir 
John Warren, captured two sail of the line, and the Belle Poule frigate, 
commanded by Admiral Linois, on their return from the Indian Ocean; 
and Sir Samuel Hood made prize of four, out of five French frigates, 
bound for the West Indies with troops on board. 

This almost total annihilation of the French navy, was followed by a 
reduction of the remaining Dutch forces at the Cape of Good Hope, and 
the final conquest of that peninsula ; and, early in the summer, Sir 
Howe Popham took possession of Buenos Ayres ; but, in this instance, 
the captured province was not occupied with a sufficient force, and the 
inhabitants retook it on the 4th of August. 

About the same period, some differences arose between the United 
States of America and Great Britain, which threatened to be followed 
by important consequences. The grievances in which the difficulty 
originated, were .such as unquestionably gave the Americans much 
ground for complaint, although no fault could be imputed to the English 
maritime policy, for they were the necessary result of the Americans' 
having engrossed so large a portion of the carrying-trade between the 
belligerent powers of Europe. The first subject of complaint was the 
impressment of seamen, claimed to be British subjects, in the American 
service : the next, the alleged violation of neutral rights, by the seizure 
and condemnation, under certain.circumstances, of vessels engaged in 
the carrying-trade of France. To these serious and lasting subjects of 
discord, was added the irritation produced by an unfortunate shot from 
the British ship Leander, on the coast of America, which killed an 
American citizen, and produced so great a disturbance, that Mr. Jeffer- 
son issued an intemperate proclamation, prohibiting the crew of that and 
some other English vessels from entering the harbors of the United 
States. Meetings took place in the principal cities of the Union, at 
which violent resolutions were passed by acclamation. Congress dis- 
cussed the subject, and, after some preliminary decrees, passed a non- 
importation act against the manufactures of Great Britain. The English 
people were equally loud in asserting their maritime rights, and a new 
trans-Atlantic war seemed to be inevitable. But, fortunately for both 
countries, whose real interests are not more closely united than their 
popular passions are at variance, the adjustment of the matters in dis- 
pute was left to wiser arid cooler heads than the vehement populace of 
either. Mr. Monroe and Mr. Pinckney were sent as commissioners to 
England, and by conferences with Lords Holland and Auckland, the dif- 
ferences were amicably reconciled. 

The cabinet of Berlin was greatly embarrassed on receiving intelli- 
gence of the treaty concluded between Haugwitz and Napoleon at Vienna. 
On the one hand, the object at which their ambition had for ten years 
been directed, seemed about to be obtained by the possession of Hano- 
ver ; but, on the other hand, some remains of conscience made them feel 
ashamed at thus partitioning a friendly power, and they were not without 
fear of offending Alexander, by openly despoiling his faithful ally. At 
length, however, the magnitude of the temptation prevailed over the 


king's better principles, and he determined not simply to ratify the treaty, 
but to send it back to Paris with certain modifications ; and, to give a 
color to the transaction, as well, perhaps, as a salvo to his own sense of 
justice, he offered to accept the proposed exchange of Hanover for cer- 
tain southern provinces of Prussia, on condition that such exchange 
should be deferred till a general peace was ratified, and the consent of 
Great Britain obtained. At the same moment, it was represented to the 
English minister at Berlin, that arrangements had been concluded with 
France for insuring the tranquillity of Hanover, which " stipulated ex- 
pressly the committing of that country to the sole guard of the Prussian 
troops, and to the administration of the king, until the conclusion of a 
general peace." But not a word was said of any ulterior designs to an- 
nex Hanover to the Prussian dominions. Napoleon, however, who saw 
through this equivocation, and determined that Prussia should take defi- 
nite ground on one side or the other, apprised the cabinet of Berlin, thai 
the treaty of Vienna had not been ratified within the prescribed time, 
and was therefore no longer binding on France. This step was decisive. 
On the 15th of February, Haugwitz signed a new treaty, which was rati- 
fied on the 26th, and carried into immediate execution, by which Hanover 
was openly ceded to Prussia, and her ports closed against the British flag : 
the Prussian troops accordingly took formal possession of the territory. 

The moment that the British government ascertained these facts, they 
recalled their ambassador from Berlin, declared the Prussian harbors in 
a state of blockade, and laid an embargo on all Prussian vessels in Eng- 
lish ports. Within a few weeks, the Prussian flag was swept from the 
ocean, and four hundred of her merchant ships fell into the hands of the 
British cruisers. 

In consenting to this infamous treaty with France, the cabinet of Ber 
lin were actuated by a desire for gain, together with a wish to deprecate 
the wrath and conciliate the favor of Napoleon ; and it is well to know 
how far the latter objects were accomplished. "From the moment,'' 
says Bignon, "that the treaty of the 15th of February was signed, Napo- 
leon did more than hate Prussia ; he entertained toward that power the 
most profound contempt. All his views from that day were based on 
considerations foreign to her alliance, and he pursued his plans as if that 
alliance no longer existed." His hostility and contempt soon appeared 
in his occupation of the abbacies of Werden, Essen and Elten, without 
any regard to the claims of Prussia ; in his levying large contributions 
from Frankfort and Hamburg ; and in his seizing, at Bremen, a large 
quantity of merchandise, merely suspected to be British, and committing 
it to the flames. The Imperial robber afterward exacted six millions of 
francs, in this time of profound peace, from Hamburg and the Hanse 
Towns, as the price of his military protection. 

Napoleon next proceeded to form a general treaty with the Kings of 
Bavaria and Wirtemberg, the Archbishop of Ratisbon, the Elector of 
Baden, the Grand-Duke of Berg, the Landgrave of Hesse d'Armstadt, 
the Princes of Nassau, Hohenzollern, Sigmasingen, Salm-Salm, Salm- 
Kerbourg, Isemberg-Birchestein, Litchtenstein d'Aremberg, the Count de 
la Leyen and the Grand-Duke of Wurtzberg which compact is known 
as the Confederation of the Rhine. By this treaty, the states in alliance 
were declared to be for ever separated from the Germanic Empire, inde- 
pendent of any power foreign to the Confederacy, and placed under the 


protection of the Emperor of the French ; moreover, hostility committed 
against any one of the parties was to be considered as a declaration of 
war against the whole. The Emperor Francis, justly considering this 
measure as subversive of his Empire, solemnly renounced the throne of 
the Caesars, and declared himself the first Emperor of Austria independ- 
ent of the hereditary states. 

This separation, however, seemed likely to prove as serious to Prussia 
as to Austria, by bringing the hostile influence of France so close to the 
frontiers of the former power ; and it accordingly produced a great sen- 
sation in Berlin. But this and some preceding causes of complaint sunk 
into comparative insignificance, when it was discovered that Napoleon 
had proposed to enter into negotiations with England, on the basis of 
restoring Hanover to its lawful sovereign, and made advances to Russia, 
promising to throw no obstacle in the way of a reestablishment of the 
kingdom of Poland and Polish Prussia, in favor of the Grand-Duke Con- 
stantine. Irritated beyond endurance, and anxious to regain the place 
that he was conscious he had lost in the estimation of Europe, the King 
of Prussia immediately put his armies on the war footing, dispatched M. 
Kruscmark to St. Petersburg and M. .Lacobi to London, to seek a recon- 
ciliation with those powers, opened the navigation of the Elbe, concluded 
his differences with Sweden, and ordered his troops to defile in the direq. 
tion of Leipsic. 

The efforts of Prussia to regain friendly relations with England and 
Russia were soon crowned with success the cabinets of both countries 
being willing to forgive and overlook her gross meanness and duplicity, 
in consideration of her now honestly throwing her whole force into the 
cale against France: but a similar attempt to engage Austria in the 
Compact totally failed. The cabinet of Vienna, with too much justice, 
took the ground that the conduct of Prussia for ten years had been so 
dubious and vacillating, her hostility to Austria on many occasions so 
evident, her partiality for France so conspicuous, and her changes of 
policy during the last twelve months so extraordinary, no reliance what- 
ever could be placed on her maintaining for any length of time a decided 
course ; least of all could it be hoped, that she would continue stedfast in 
the sudden and perilous undertaking in which she had now engaged ; her 
very vehemence, on this occasion, being the worst possible guaranty for 
her constancy. Besides, the Archduke Charles, on being consulted as to 
the state of the army, reported that the troops were without pay, organi- 
zation and equipment, and in no condition to renew the war from which 
they had so recently and deplorably suffered. In one quarter, however, 
and where it was least expected, Prussia received encouragement and 
promise of cooperation, though at the moment there were no means of 
making the aid available : this was from the government of Spain, which, 
tired of Napoleon's exhausting demands upon her treasury, and at last 
opening her eyes, as Prussia had done, to the real designs of the French 
Emperor, resolved to terminate her ruinous alliance with him and, at a 
convenient opportunity, join her arms to those of the enemies of France. 

The whole weight of the contest was, therefore, destined to fall on 
Prussia alone; for although great and efficacious assistance might in 
time be derived from England and Prussia, the Muscovite battalions were 
yet cantoned on the Niemen, those of England had not sailed from the 
Thames; while Napoleon, at the head of a hundred and eighty thousand 



veteran soldiers, was rapidly approaching the Thuringian Forest, whither 
the rash haste of Prussia, by her premature declaration of hostilities, had 
given him abundant pretext for concentrating his troops. And not only 
had she precipitated this terrible invasion, without first assuring herself 
of support from her allies; but she had also neglected the proper appli- 
cation of her own resources for defence. Her entire disposable force did 
not exceed a hundred and thirty thousand men ; and when these took the 
field, no depots of magazines or provisions had been formed, no measures 
taken for recruiting the army in case of disaster, no rallying points as- 
signed for the retreating troops if defeated, nor were the frontier or 
interior fortresses of the kingdom provisioned, armed or garrisoned in a 
manner to render them capable of a protracted resistance. A general 
and deplorable infatuation seemed to possess the whole people. They 
seemed either to forget or despise the strength of their redoubtable adver- 
sary; and, in the same mad proportion, to exaggerate their own. Care- 
less of the future, and chanting songs of victory, the army bent its steps 
toward Erfruth, dreaming of nothing but conquest and the overthrow of 
Napoleon. Great as wa^s the infatuation of the troops, greater still was 
the delusion of their commander, the Duke of Brunswick, who, though 
an able man of the last century, was behind the present age, and totally 
ignorant of the perilous chances of a war with the veterans of France. 
He attributed the disasters of the late campaigns entirely to timidity and 
want of skill in the Austrians, and maintained, that the way to combat the 
French was to assume a vigorous offensive, and paralyze their enthusiasm 
by holding them to defensive positions a sound theory indeed, but one 
which required an army differently constituted from any that Prussia 
could muster, to carry out in practice. Besides, there was one thing of 
which the Prussians, from the general-in-chief to the lowest drummer, 
were entirely unaware namely, the terrible vehemence and rapidity 
which Napoleon had introduced into modern warfare, by the union of 
consummate skill at head-quarters with enormous masses of troops in the 
field; and thus, falling into the common error of applying to the present 
the antiquated rules of the past, they based their calculations on a war 
of manoeuvres, when one of annihilation awaited them. 

The respective armies pressed forward to the contest ; and, on the 8th 
of October, their advanced posts were in sight of each other. The line 
adopted by the Prussians was an echellon movement with the right in 
front, which was pushed on to Eisenach; next in order followed the 
centre, commanded by the king in person, who, in connexion with the 
left wing, under Hohenlohe and Ruchel, advanced upon Saalfield and 
Jena; while each wing was covered by a detached corps of observation, 
one under Blucher and the other under Tauenzein. The design of this 
movement was, by a flank march, to pierce the base of the enemy's posi- 
tion, and, by turning at once their centre and left, cut them off from their 
communications with France. It was precisely the mano3uvre under- 
taken by the allies at Austerlitz, excepting that the main bodies of the two 
armies were not so near each other, and was of course liable, in its very 
inception, to the same disastrous result. 

Napoleon was not likely to lose this opportunity of at once defeating 
and destroying the Prussian army. At three o'clock in the morning of 
the 9th of October, the French troops were in motion. On the right, 
Soult and Ney, with a Bavarian division, marched from Bayreuth by 

1806.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 201 

Hof, on Plauen; in the centre, Murat, with Bernadotte and Davoust, 
moved from Bamberg by Cronach, on Saalbourg; on the left, Lannes 
and Augereau advanced by Coburg and Graffenthal, on Saalfield. The 
effect of these movements was, to bring the French centre and right 
directly on the Prussian communications and reserves. 

The Prussians were in the midst of their perilous advance toward the 
French left, when intelligence of this change of their opponents' position 
reached the Duke of Brunswick. He instantly sent orders to arrest the 
march of his troops, and directed their concentration in the neighborhood 
of Weimar. But before this movement could be accomplished, the 
French skirmishers were upon their flanks, and in every quarter they 
were forced to retreat with considerable loss. As yet, however, the 
contest on both sides had been confined to detachments of light troops, 
the principal force of the respective armies being too distant from 
each other for a general action. But, in the meantime, Napoleon had 
gained the whole line of the Prussian communications, and cut off every 
chance of retreat. Three days were consumed in partial engagements 
and important changes of position, every one of which resulted to the 
advantage of the French. On the evening of the 12th, the corps of 
Hohenlohe, consisting of about forty thousand men, was grouped in dense 
masses on a ridge of heights on the road from Jena to Weimar: the 
remainder of the army, about sixty-five thousand strong, under the Duke 
of Brunswick, and accompanied by the king, lay about a league in the 
rear of Hohenlohe. But while the Prussians were thus advantageously 
posted, they learned that Murat and Davoust had advanced upon Naum- 
berg; on which the Duke of Brunswick, desirous to protect that town, 
and not suspecting that Napoleon contemplated an immediate action, 
moved with the principal part of his corps to Auerstadt, where he arrived 
at night on the 13th, leaving Hohenlohe at Jena to cover his retreat. 
During the same day, Napoleon took up his position on the heights oppo- 
site Jena, and made arrangements for a pitched battle on the following 
morning, without dreaming that the Prussians had thus insanely divided 
their forces. 

At six o'clock on the 14th, the French commenced the attack, and the 
Prussians, though taken entirely by surprise, received it with great intre- 
pidity. But their numbers were only forty thousand men, while the 
French exceeded ninety thousand ; and notwithstanding the determined 
bravery with which they fought, it was impossible to avoid a terrible 
defeat. Column after column of fresh troops poured in upon them, the 
field was strewed with their dead and wounded, and at length they gave 
way at all points and fled in tumultuous confusion, pursued by the cavalry 
of Murat. At this moment, Ruchel arrived with a reenforcement of 
twenty thousand men ; a force which, under different circumstances, 
might have changed the fortune of the day ; but after a desperate combat 
of one hour's duration, they, too, were broken, dispersed and almost anni- 
hilated. It was no longer a battle, but a massacre. The Prussians, 
abandoning their artillery and all form of discipline, fled to Weimar, 
where the victors entered pell-mell with the fugitives. 

While Hohenlohe and Ruchel were suffering this fearful disaster, the 
King of Prussia was fighting under different circumstances, though with 
little better success, at Auerstadt. Davoust, being posted near the king's 
encampment, had that morning received a dispatch from Napoleon- who 


had not yet heard of the Duke of Brunswick's movement upon Auerstadt 
announcing his intention of giving battle to the whole Prussian army 
at Jena, and directing him (Davoust) to fall on the Prussian rear, in order 
to cut off its retreat. The French marshal's corps, thirty thousand strong, 
though fully competent to check the flight of a routed army, would have 
seemed to be scarcely able to withstand the shock of sixty thousand well 
disciplined troops, who, commanded by the king and the Duke of Bruns- 
wick, occupied the route designated for Davoust to pursue in Napoleon's 
dispatch. But he, as well as his Emperor, was ignorant of the force 
opposed to him. and without hesitation he began his march up the long 
and steep ascent which bounds the plateau of Auerstadt. He had already 
gained the defile of Koessen, and his vanguard was forming on the field 
beyond, when the straggling columns of the Prussians, not anticipating 
an attack at this point, crossed his path. A skirmish ensued, which, being 
promptly followed up by the advancing forces on each side, soon became 
a battle that raged without intermission during the whole day. The 
Prussian army was greatly superior to its opponents in numbers ; and in 
discipline and courage, was inferior to none in Europe ; but the French 
troops, in addition to their high discipline, had the material advantage of 
long experience and constant service in the field, to which the Prussians 
had been strangers, through a protracted interval of peace ; and Davoust 
occupied a position of defiles, which, in a great degree, compensated for 
his deficiency of numerical strength. The battle resulted in the total 
defeat of the Prussians, who retreated with great loss ; and Davoust, who 
had won imperishable military renown by such a victory against such 
odds, encamped on the scene of his triumph. 

The King of Prussia, late at night, gave directions for the retreat of 
the army upon Weimar, intending to form a junction with Hohenlohe, of 
whose discomfiture he was yet Jgnorant. But as the troops, in extreme 
dejection, were following the great road which leads to that place, they 
were startled by the sight of an extensive line of bivouac fires on the 
heights of Apolda, where Bernadotte was posted with his entire corps, 
not having taken part in either action. This sudden apparition of a fresh 
army of unknown strength on the flank of their retreat, compelled the 
Prussians, at that untimely hour, to change their line and abandon the 
great road. At the same time, rumors began to circulate through the 
ranks of a catastrophe at Jena ; and the appearance of fugitives from that 
quarter, moving in the utmost haste athwart the king's route, soon an- 
nounced the magnitude of that overthrow. A general consternation now 
seized the men. Despair took possession of the stoutest hearts ; and as 
the cross-tide of the broken battalions of Jena mingled with the wreck of 
the masses of Auerstadt, the confusion became inextricable, the panic 
universal. Infantry, cavalry and artillery disbanded, and fled in hopeless 
disorder across the fields without direction, command, or rallying-point. 

The loss of the Prussians in the two battles was prodigious ; it amounted 
to nearly forty thousand men of whom one half were prisoners two 
hundred pieces of cannon and twenty-five standards ; and the conse- 
quences of the retreat were not less disastrous. The unusual occurrence 
of four generals being killed or mortally wounded, left the confused mass 
of fugitives without a leader, and they therefore fled wherever chance 
directed their steps. Fourteen thousand of the stragglers, arriving from 
different points, made their way into Erfurth, a place capable, under other 


circumstances, of permanent defence ; but the entire number surrendered 
on the following day, with a hundred and twenty pieces of cannon, to the 
first corps of the enemy that approached the town. On the 16th, three 
thousand men with twenty pieces of cannon, surrendered at Nordhausen, 
and on the 17th, four thousand men and thirty pieces of cannon were taken 
at Halle ; while the killed and wounded in the contests where these cap- 
tures were made, bore a large proportion to the number of prisoners. 
The king surrendered the command of the remnants of his army to Ho- 
henlohe, and retired to Magdebourg, where Hohenlohe soon followed him 
with about twenty-six thousand men, to protect that important fortress. 
The French pursuit, however, was so rapid, that they arrived at Magde- 
bourg before the bewildered Prussians had all taken refuge within its 
walls. Hohenlohe, finding it would be impossible to maintain ihe place, 
resolved to evacuate it with such of the troops as yet preserved any ap- 
pearance of order ; and he accordingly withdrew on the side opposite to 
the French position with fourteen thousand men, and made for Stettin, 
abandoning Berlin to its fate, and leaving twelve thousand disorganized 
combatants to defend themselves as they might at Magdebourg. 

But the discomfitures of the Prussian general were not yet at an end. 
Wherever he directed his march, he found himself opposed by superior 
forces of the enemy ; and, after undergoing incredible hardships and fa- 
tigue, and displaying withal conduct and bravery worthy a better fate, he 
at length, on the 28th of October, was forced to surrender with his whole 
army at Prentzlow. On the same day, in obedience to the summons of 
Marshal Lannes, the governor of the fortress of Stettin, on the Oder, 
capitulated without firing a shot ; and, such was the terror inspired by 
the very appearance of a French detachment, the fortress of Custrin, with 
four thousand men, opened its gates on the 31st to the bare command of a 
single regiment of infantry, led by General Gauthier, and supplied with 
but two pieces of cannon. The disgrace and literal absurdity of this 
capitulation was made more conspicuous from the fact, that the French 
soldiers could not take possession of the fortress it being situated on an 
island in the Oder until the garrison supplied them with boats for the 
purpose ! 

The only corps of the Prussian army which had hitherto escaped de- 
struction, was that formed by the union of Blucher's cavalry with the Duke 
of Saxe Weimar's infantry, and commanded by the former of these gen- 
erals ; who, after drawing reinforcements from some ill-defended interior 
fortresses, found himself at the head of twenty-four thousand men of all 
arms, inclftding sixty pieces of cannon. Blucher first moved toward 
Magdebourg, which had not at that time surrendered to the invaders ; but 
finding his progress interrupted by nearly sixty thousand of the enemy, 
he fell back to Lubec. Here, again, his march was impeded by thrice 
his own number of men under Bernadotte: he nevertheless made an en- 
trance into the town, and defended it iritil near nightfall with invincible 
obstinacy ; but his loss in the affair was immense, and in the evening he 
was glad to retreat with five thousand men to Schwertau, where his cav- 
alry awaited him. He here ascertained that further resistance was hope- 
less, as he was completely enveloped by his indefatigable enemies ; and he 
capitulated on the summons of Murat, yielding his whole force, with his 
artillery and baggage, into the hands cf the French troops. This too4 
place en the 7th of November. On the 3th, Magdebourg surrendered with 



its garrison of fourteen thousand troops under arms, four thousand in hos- 
pital, six hundred pieces of cannon, eight hundred thousand pounds of 
powder, and extensive military stores of all sorts. The fortresses of 
Hameln and Nieubourg on the Weser, soon followed the example of 
Magdebourg, and their respective garrisons, augmented by stragglers to 
eight thousand men, yielded themselves prisoners of war. 

In this deplorable extremity, the King of Prussia sought to obtain condi- 

ions of peace ; but Napoleon, who had resolved on utterly destroying his 

jnfortunate enemy, coldly replied to the ambassador, that it was premature 

to speak of peace when the campaign was scarcely begun, and that the 

king, having chosen the arbitrament of arms, must abide the issue. 

On the 26th of October, Napoleon made a triumphal entry into Ber- 
lin ; and, in order as much as possible to lacerate the feelings of his van- 
quished antagonists, he caused the procession to pass under the arch of the 
Great Frederic, and himself took up his residence at the old palace. In 
addition to this, he paraded a large body of prisoners through their na- 
tive streets of Berlin, as an expression of his contempt for their misfor- 
tunes ; he heaped all manner of indignity and cruelty on the nobles of the 
capital ; and the brave old Duke of Brunswick, respectable from his age, 
his former achievements and his honorable scars, and at that moment mor- 
tally wounded, was driven by the persecutions of the French Emperor to 
take refuge in Altona, where he soon after expired. 

The French armies, without meeting any further resistance, took posses- 
sion of the whole country between the Rhine and the Oder ; and in the 
rear of the victorious troops appeared the dismal scourge of military con- 
tributions : one hundred and sixty millions of francs were demanded, and 
the rapacity of the French agents employed in its collection aggravated 
the weight and odious nature of the imposition. Early in November, 
Napoleon issued a decree, separating the conquered state into four 
departments, namely, Berlin, Magdebourg, Stettin and Custrin ; and the 
military and civil government of the whole was intrusted to a governor- 
general at Berlin, appointed by the Emperor, and subject in all respects 
to his control. The same system of usurpation was extended to the Duchy 
of Brunswick, the states of Hesse and Hanover, the Duchy of Mecklen- 
berg and the Hanse Towns. Napoleon announced his intention to retain 
these territories until England should concede to him the liberty of the seas. 
Negotiations for peace between France and Prussia were in the mean time 
commenced, but Napoleon's demands were so exorbitant that the king re- 
solved, even in his present state of helplessness, to abide the continuance 
of the war, rather than accede to them. 

When this was decided, the main body of the French army pushed on 
to the Vistula to engage the forces of Russia. Napoleon made a brief 
halt atPosen, in Prussian Poland, where he gave audience to the deputies 
of that unhappy country, and made them promises of protection which he 
never performed. At the same time, as the contingent losses of so vast a 
body of men in constant service, even though always victorious, were con- 
siderable, the Senate at Paris, on the Emperor's requisition, voted a ree'n- 
forcement of eighty thousand conscripts from the youth who would arrive 
at the lawful age in 1807. The Elector of Saxony was at this time ele- 
vated to the dignity of a king, and, as such, admitted into the Confedera- 
tion of the Rhine. 

The campaign of Jena was the most marvellous of Napoleon's achieve- 

1806.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 205 

ments. Without halting one day before the forces of the enemy, the 
French troops had marched from the Rhine to the Vistula ; three hundred 
and fifty standards, four thousand pieces of cannon, six first-rate fortresses, 
and eighty thousand prisoners, had been taken in less than seven weeks : 
and of a noble array of a hundred and twenty thousand men, who were so 
lately mustered on the banks of the Saale, not more than fifteen thousand 
could be rallied to follow the fortunes of the Prussian king. 



ALTHOUGH the campaign of Jena had nearly destroyed the powei of 
Prussia, Russia was yet untouched, and while her formidable legions were 
in the field, the war was very far from being terminated. Napoleon felt 
this, as the armies of the two Empires approached the Vistula at a season 
of the year when, in ordinary contests, the soldier's only care is to protect 
himself against the rigor of the elements. The efficient force of the 
French, who were concentrated on the destined theatre of war early in 
December, amounted to one. hundred thousand men ; while the allied 
army of Russia and Prussia, owing to the expedition of a large detachment 
to the Turkish dominions, could not be estimated at more than seventy-five 
thousand. Field-marshal Kamenskoi, who had the command in-chief of 
this force, was a veteran of the school of Suwarrow, nearly eighty years 
of age, and little qualified to enter the lists with Napoleon ; but the ability 
of Benningsen and Buxhowden, the two next in command, promised, in 
part, to atone for the old marshal's deficiencies. 

The cabinet of St. Petersburg had foreseen that the rapidity of Napo- 
leon's movements would give the French a numerical superiority on the 
Vistula, unless Russia could receive some material aid in bringing for- 
ward her troops ; and they therefore made early application to Great 
Britain, for a portion of those subsidies which she had so liberally granted 
on former occasions, to the powers who combated the common enemy of 
European independence ; and, considering that the whole weight of the 
contest had now fallen on Russia, they solicited, and not without reason, 
a loan of six millions sterling. The answer to this application, proved 
too clearly that the spirit of Pitt no longer directed the British councils. 
The subsidy was declined on the part of the government, but the minis- 
ters proposed that a loan should be contracted in England, for the service 
of Russia, and that, for the security of the lenders, the duties on British 
merchandise then levied in the Russian ports, should be repealed, and 
the same duties, in lieu thereof, levied in the British ports and applied to 
the payment of the interest on the loan. This strange proposal, equiva- 
lent to a declaration of want of confidence both in the integrity and sol- 
vency of the Russian government, was of course rejected, and, to the 
lasting discredit of England, Russia was left to contend unaided with the 
powor of France. 

The advanced posts of the allied army had reached the Vistula, though 


not in great force, before the French troops came up ; but on the arrival 
of the latter, the allies fell back to Pultusk, and Davoust occupied War- 
saw on the 30th of November. Wh^n, however, the second Russian 
army, under Buxhowden, approached Pultusk, Kamenskoi resolved on a 
forward movement. Head-quarters were advanced to Nas : eTfk, and the 
four divisions of Benningsen's corps took post between the Ukra, the Hug, 
and the Narew ; while Buxhowden's divisions, as they successively ar- 
ived, were stationed between Golymin and Makow ; and Lestocq, on the 
xtreme right, encamped near the banks of the Drewentz almost under 
the walls of Thorn. The object of this general advance was to compel 
the French to withdraw entirely from the right bank of the Vistula, that 
the river might interpose between the winter-quarters of the two armies. 
When Napoleon heard of this forward movement, he hastened to War- 
saw, where he arrived on the 18th of December, and was welcomed as a 
deliverer by the inhabitants. The nobility flocked into the capital from 
all quarters, the peasantry assembled and demanded arms, the national 
dress was generally resumed, several regiments of horse were raised, 
and before the close of the campaign, no less than thirty thousand men 
were enrolled in disciplined regiments from the Prussian provinces of 
Poland. But this universal enthusiasm did not lead Napoleon to forget 
his own policy, which was to encourage this revolt in Prussian Poland 
only, lest by extending it to the Austrian portion of that ancient kingdom, 
he might rouse the cabinet of Vienna from its neutrality. In his decree, 
therefore, bv which he established a provisional government in Warsaw, 
he was careful to say, that such government would continue only " un- 
til the fate of Prussian Poland was determined by a general peace ;" 
and this, in connexion with his other measures, showed to the reflecting 
and prudent, that while he was resolved to make the utmost use of Po- 
lish cooperation in pursuing his own plans of aggrandizement, he would 
abandon this unfortunate people to their own resources, the moment he 
ceased to need their aid, or was unable to render it available to himself. 
Some skirmishes had already taken place between detachments of the 
two armies, which ended in favor of the Russians ; but when Napoleon 
took command in person, he gave orders for more serious operations. 
On the 23rd of December, he directed Davoust to force the passage of 
the Ukra, which had hitherto bounded the French lines ; and, after a 
severe action of fourteen hours, the passage was effected, with a loss to 
each army of one thousand men. The allies fell back toward Pultusk, 
and being pursued, another conflict took place in front of Nasielsk, be- 
tween General Rapp and the Russians under Count Tolstoy, in which 
the latter were worsted, but not without inflicting a severe loss on the 
victors ; in this affair, an aid-de camp of Alexander was made prisoner 
by the French, and Count Segur, attached to Napoleon's household, fell 
into the hands of the Russians. On the same day, Augereau, after fight- 
ing from morning until sunset at Lochoczyn, forced a Russian division 
to retire; so that, although no decisive advantage had yet been gained, 
the whole allied army were now in full retreat upon diverging linr-s. and 
evcrj' moment the several corps were separating farther from each other, 
Kamenskoi was so much discouraged at the aspect of affairs, that he 
ordered the artillery to be destroyed, lest it should too much impede the 
flight of the troops ; but Benningsen, deeming such an order unnecessary, 
and convinced that it resulted from an approaching insanity, which so-.j 


entirely overset the mind of the veteran marshal, took upon himself the 
bold step of disobeying it ; and, in order to gain time for the cannon and 
equipages to defile in the rear, he resolved to maintain his position at 
Pultusk with all the troops at his disposal, amounting to about forty thou- 
sand men ; while the divisions of Doctoroff, Sacken and Gallitzin, at 
Golymin, made a stand against Augereau, who was supported by a part 
of Davoust's and Murat's corps. Bennin^sen drew up his army in 
admirable order, in front of the town of Pultusk ; his right wing was 
commanded by Barclay de Tolly and Count Tolstoy, his left by Sacken, 
and the centre by himself in person. Lannes, with thirty-five thousand 
men, advanced to the attack on the morning of the 26th. The battle was 
contested at various points until long after dark, when a terrible storm 
separated the combatants. Neither party could boast of decided success. 
The Russians remained masters of the field till midnight, when they 
crossed the Narew by the bridge of Pultusk, and retired in perfect order: 
the French also retreated to such a distance, that when the Cossacks, the 
next day, patroled eight miles beyond the battle-ground toward Warsaw, 
they could discover no traces of the enemy. The French lost six thou- 
sand men, and the Russians nearly five thousand. The action at Goly- 
min, about thirty miles from Pultusk, which took place on the samo day, 
terminated in a similar manner: the Russians, under Prince Gallitzin, 
remained in possession of the field, and although they lost twenty-six 
pieces of cannon, owing to the bad state of the roads, their killed and 
wounded was something less than two thousand, while the French loss 
exceeded four thousand men. As the Russian order for retreat still held 
good, Prince Gallitzin, at midnight, resumed his march for Ostrolenka. 
On the 28th, Napoleon reached Golymin, but finding that from the con- 
dition of the roads, and the obstinate valor of the Russian troops, it was 
impossible to gain any material advantage by the campaign, he issued 
orders to stop the advance of his columns, and put the troops into winter- 
quarters, while he himself returned with the Imperial Guards to War- 
saw. As soon as the Russians learned that the French had withdrawn 
from their pursuit, they also went into winter-quarters on the left bank 
of the Narew. 

This desperate struggle in the forests of Poland in the depth of winter, 
created a great sensation throughout Europe. Independent of the inte- 
rest excited by the extraordinary spectacle of two vast armies' prolonging 
their contest amid the storms and snows of a Polish winter, the divided 
trophies of the actions indicated that Napoleon's veterans had finally 
encountered their equals in the field ; and that the torrent of French 
conquest, if not averted, had at least been stemmed. 

While the French armies were in cantonments on the right bank of 
the Vistula, Benningsen, who had now been appointed to the chief com- 
mand of the allied forces, resolved to commence an offensive operation 
against the French left under Bernadotte and Ney, who, with nearly 
seventy thousand men, had extended themselves so as to menace Kon ings- 
berg, the second city of the Prussian dominions, while at the same time 
they were threatening Dantzic and Graudentz. For this purpose, the 
Russian general, whose movements were concealed by the forests that 
separated him from the French lines, rapidly united his divisions and 
pushed forward to Rhein, in Eastern Prussia, where he established his 
head-quarters on the 17th of January. On the 10th, the Russian uav- 



airy, under Gallitzin, surprised and defeated the light horse of Marshal 
Ney, and on the 22nd a severe action took place at Lecberg, whence 
the French cavalry were driven toward Allenstein. Bernadotte, alarmed 
at this sudden irruption, made great efforts to concentrate his forces at 
Mohrungen, where, on the 24th, he was attacked by Benningsen's ad- 
vanced guard. Had this attack been delayed for a few hours, until the 
entire Russian corps had reached the field, the French would have been 
totally destroyed ; as it resulted, each party lost about two thousand 
men, and Bernadotte retreated toward Thorn, severely pressed by the 
Cossacks, who almost annihilated his rear-guard, and took several thou- 
sand prisoners. Gallitzin had, in the mean time, fallen on the rear of 
Bernadotte's position, penetrated into the town, and captured the French 
marshal's private baggage, among which were found, as in the den of a 
freebooter, silver plate bearing the arms of almost all the German states, 
besides ten thousand ducats levied for his own use from the town of 

This narrow escape of both Bernadotte and Ney, excited the utmost 
alarm in the French army ; while, on the other hand, the Russians were 
proportionably elated, and followed up their success by raising the siege 
of Graudentz, and throwing ample supplies into that fortress. Napoleon, 
who had not contemplated a renewal of hostilities until the present in- 
clement season was passed, became, also, greatly disturbed at events 
which rendered it indispensable to expose his troops to a new campaign 
during the severity of a northern winter, and in a country where pro- 
visions could scarcely be obtained for so large a body of men. But there 
was no time for deliberation, as the Russians were advancing to the 
relief of Dantzic, and would soon turn the whole French line of defence. 
By a rapid concentration and forced march, the Emperor had, on the 2nd 
of February, made his way to the rear of Benningsen's army, and inter- 
posed between him and the Russian dominions, so that the sole line of 
retreat open to Benningsen lay to the northeast, in the direction of Ko- 
ningsberg and the Niemen. Napoleon endeavored to improve his advan- 
tage, by completely hemming in the Russians, but his dispatches for 
Bernadotte having fallen into Benningsen's hands, that officer was en- 
abled to elude his grasp, and withdraw from Junkowo toward Leibstadt 
on the night of the 3rd of February. 

Murat immediately pursued the retiring Russians with his whole cav- 
alry; and, as the latter had been much retarded during the night by the 
passage of their cannon and baggage through the narrow streets of 
Junkowo, the rear-guard was soon overtaken: the Russians, however, 
fought with such determined bravery, that they effected their retreat in 
perfect order, and their loss, which amounted to fifteen hundred men, 
was no greater than the French sustained in the attack. On the night 
of the 4th, Benningsen reached Frauendorf, where he stood firmly during 
the next day. But a continued retreat in presence of the enemy, soon 
began to be attended with its usual consequences on the troops, and Ben- 
ningsen found it necessary to check the French pursuit by a general 
action. He therefore, after some deliberation, selected the field of Prus- 
sich-Eylau for that purpose, and pushed forward his columns to make 
the requisite dispositions for a battle. On the night of the 5th, he arrived 
at Landsberg, where he resisted a spirited attack from Davoust's corps ; 
and, on the following day his rear-guard, under Bagrathion, was assailed 


by Murat's cavalry and a large part of the corps of Soult and Augereau. 
Bagrathion maintained his ground, however, during the whole day, and 
at night bivouacked in sight of the French army. Toward morning on 
the 7th, he moved on to Prussich-Eylau, where, by noonday, the ' Rus- 
sian forces were drawn up in order of battle, awaiting only the arrival 
of Lestocq with the remains of the Prussian army. The entire allied 
force, including Lestocq's division, amounted to seventy-five thousand 
men, with four hundred and sixty pieces of cannon ; while the total 
strength of Napoleon was not less than eighty-five thousand, including 
sixteen thousand cavalry, and three hundred and fifty pieces of artillery. 

The field of battle was a wide expanse of ground rising into small hills, 
and well adapted to military operations. The Russian right, under 
Tutschakoff, lay on both sides of Schloditten ; the centre, under Sacken, 
occupied a cluster of hills in front of Kuschnitten ; the left, under Tols- 
toy, rested on Klein-Saussgarten ; the advanced guard, ten thousand 
strong, with its outposts extending almost to the village of Eylau, was 
commanded by Bagrathion ; and Doctoroff held the reserve in the rear 
of Sacken. After Napoleon had carefully reconnoitered this position, on 
the morning of the 8th of February, he resolved to turn the Russian left 
and throw it back upon the centre ; but to conceal his purpose, he com- 
menced a violent attack on the centre and right, pushing forward Auge- 
reau and Soult with his own left and centre. Augereau had not ad- 
vanced more than three hundred yards, when his troops were arrested 
by a terrible fire of the Russian artillery ; a snow storm at the same time 
darkened the atmosphere, so as to prevent the combatants from seeing 
each other, and a charge of Cossacks, whose lances reached the enemy 
before they were aware of their approach, completed the disorder of the 
French division, which fled in the wildest confusion to Eylau. So entire 
was the destruction of Augereau's corps, not more than fifteen hundred 
men, out of sixteen thousand, made good their retreat. 

Napoleon was first apprised of this disaster by the fugitives who hur- 
ried past his position at Eylau, and he nearly fell into the hands of the 
division that pursued them. Soult was by this time also in full retreat 
before the Russian centre ; and to check the advance of the latter, Napo- 
leon formed an enormous column of fourteen thousand cavalry and twenty- 
five thousand infantry, supported by two hundred pieces of cannon, and 
sent them, under Murat, to break the Russian line. The first shock of 
the dragoons was irresistible, and the French cuirassiers, advancing 
through the openings they made, reached Benningsen's reserve of cav- 
alry. They were here immediately charged by PlatofF, with his Cos- 
sacks ; and, as in the meantime the Russian line had rallied and repelled 
the French infantry, the cuirassiers had no avenue of retreat, and were 
all destroyed excepting eighteen men, who regained their own quarters 
by a long circuit around the Russian outposts. The battle was now won 
on Benningsen's centre and right, but Davoust, who had long been held 
in check on the left, soon after received a reenforcement, carried the 
village of Klein-Saussgarten, and threatened to change the fate of the 
day, when Lestocq arrived with his long-expected corps. He advanced 
with great gallantry to the aid of the left wing, and although Davoust's 
troops were more than double the number of his own, he forced him to 
retreat with great loss, and the whole Russian line was soon pressing 
forward in pursuit of the retreating army of Napoleon, when night sepa- 
rated the combatants. 


The losses in this battle were prodigious; twenty-five thousand inen 
were killed or wounded on the side of the Russians; and thirty thousand 
on that of the French, besides ten thousand who temporarily deserted 
their colors. The Russians lost sixteen guns and fourteen standards, 
and captured twelve French eagles in return. 

Immediately after the battle, Napoleon gave orders for his heavy artil- 
lery and baggage to defile toward Landsberg; but he was relieved from 
the mortification of retreating before an enemy in an open field, by the 
measures of Benningsen, who, in opposition to the wishes and advice of 
his officers, and as yet ignorant of the immense loss and consequent in- 
tentions of the French Emperor, resolved on withdrawing toward Ko- 
ningsberg. For nine days, the French remained at Eylau, unable to 
advance, unwilling to retreat, and apparantly awaiting some pacific 
overture from the enemy. Finding, at length, that the Russians man- 
ifested no disposition to propose an armistice, Napoleon resolved himself 
to take that step, and sent General Bertram to Benningsen's outposts with 
proposals of peace to the King of Prussia. The Russian commander sent 
the envoy on to Memel, where that monarch resided, and sent also a 
letter recommending him not to treat. The French officer, on being 
presented to the king, proposed a separate treaty of peace, and on terms 
far different from those which he would have offered after the battle of 
Jena; but Frederic William could not be induced to negotiate on a 
basis that excluded the Emperor of Russia from .he treaty, notwithstand- 
ing the comparatively tempting offers that were made to him. 

Foiled in his endeavors to seduce Prussia into a separate accommoda- 
tion, Napoleon at length found himself compelled to retreat. Eylau 
was evacuated, and six hundred wounded men were there abandoned to 
the enemy, while the whole army, retiring by the great road of Lands- 
berg, spread itself into cantonments on the banks of the Passarge, from 
Hohenstein to Braunsberg. Orders were at the same time given to 
resume the siege of Dantzic. 

The bloody contest of Eylau excited the liveliest hopes among the 
people of Germany and England, and the gloom and depression that it 
diffused through all ranks in France were proportionably deep. The 
funds fell rapidly, thousands of families were called to mourn the death 
of relatives, and the general despondency was much increased when the 
message of Napoleon to the Senate, dated March 26th, announced that 
another conscription of eighty thousand men was needed, and must be 
anticipated from the supply not legally due until September of the follow- 
ing year. The number of young men who then annually attained the 
age of eighteen in France, was two hundred thousand ; yet, within seven 
months, Napoleon had called for no less than two hundred and forty 
thousand. This requisition for men was followed by a demand for im- 
mense supplies of stores and ammunition: all the highways converging 
from France and Italy to Poland were covered with troops and baggage- 
wagons; horses followed in great numbers from Holstein, Flanders and 
Saxony, and contributions were levied to an indefinite extent in Germany 
for the maintenance of the army. Indeed, so far did the provident care 
of the Emperor reach, and so strongly did he feel the danger of his posi- 
tion, he made gigantic preparations for a defensive warfare, and strength- 
ened himself by fortresses and intrenchments, in anticipation of a struggle 
for life or death on the banks of the Rhine. 


While Napoleon was taking those measures which resulted in the 
battle of Jena, the affairs of Turkey attracted some attention amonu the 
powers of Europe. As early as August. 1806, the French Emperor had 
sent General Sebastian! to Constantinople, for the express purpose of 
fomenting discontent between Turkey and Russia. By a treaty between 
these two powers, bearing date September 24th, 1802, it had been stipu- 
lated, that the governors of the two Turkish frontier provinces of Wai la- 
cilia and Moldavia should not be removed from office without the consent 
of Russia; nevertheless, Sebastiani, seizing on this clause as the most 
promising ground for bringing about a rupture, succeeded in persuading 
the Sultan Selim to displace the rulers of those provinces: and as the 
step was taken, not only without the concurrence of Russia, but also 
without the knowledge of the other diplomatic functionaries at Constan- 
tinople, the Russian minister complained loudly of the infraction of the 
treaty, and he was supported by Mr. Arbuthnot, minister from Great 
Britain, who threatened an attack on the Turkish capital by the fleets 
of the two nations. A few days afterward, a Russian brig, which arrived 
at the mouth of the Bosphorus, was denied admission by the Turkish 
authorities: this so enraged the Russian minister, that he embarked on 
board the English brig Canopus, threatening to leave the harbor if the 
two dismissed governors were not replaced ; and the British envoy added, 
that if the demand of Russia were not complied with, an English fleet 
would enter the Dardanelles and lay the Turkish capital in ashes. In- 
timidated by these threats, the Sultan acceded to the demand, and made 
ample promises of satisfaction for the steps he had taken : but it soon 
appeared that he had yielded to the storm only to place himself in a 
condition to brave it, and that his policy and predilections were identified 
with Napoleon's views. In the mean time, intelligence of the rupture, 
but not of its reconciliation, had reached St. Petersburg, and General 
Michelson was dispatched with a powerful army to make an immediate 
descent on the Turkish dominions; and although, afterward, news of the 
accommodation arrived, the Russian cabinet, either having no confidence 
in the good faith of Selim, or not sorry to find a pretext for invading 
Turkey, refused to countermand their orders to General Michelson, who 
advanced accordingly into the Sultan's territory. Sebastiani. improving 
the advantage thus offered, induced the Divan to declare war against 
Russia, which was formally proclaimed on the 30th of December. But 
notwithstanding the hostile attitude thus assumed by Turkey, she was yet 
in no condition to sustain the war, and General Michelson overran Wal- 
lachia and Moldavia, and took military possession of both provinces. An 
application from the cabinet of St. Petersburg to that of London, for the 
naval cooperation of the latter in prosecuting the contest, was readily 
acceded to ; and Sir John Duckworth, having under his command seven 
ships of the line, two frigates and two bomb- vessels, received orders to 
force the passage of the Dardanelles and compel the Turks to renounce 
their alliance with France. On the 26th of January, when the fleet 
arrived off the mouth of these straits, Mr. Arbuthnot presented to the 
Sultan the ultimatum of Great Britain, requiring the dismissal of Sebas- 
tiani, the formation of a treaty with England and Russia, and the opening 
of the Dardanelles to the vessels of the latter power. This proposal was 
rejected, and a declaration of war against Great Britain immediately 


Sir John Duckworth, on receiving this intelligence, made rapid prepa- 
rations for passing the Dardanelles, and entered the straits on the 19th 
of February, with a fair wind. The Turks opened a cannonade from 
some of their batteries, but they were soon silenced by the broadsides of 
the fleet, which, steadily advancing, overtook and destroyed the ship of 
the Captain Pacha, together with five frigates, and cast anchor off the 
Isle of Princes, within three leagues of Seraglio Point. Sir John Duck- 
worth then sent a message to the authorities of Constantinople, that unless 
the demands of Great Britain were instantly granted, he should in half 
an hour open his fire on the town. 

At first, the Sultan thought of nothing but submission. Sebastiani, 
however, prevailed on him to pursue a different course ; and, in order to 
gain time for repairing the ample batteries of the place, and of the Dar- 
danelles, he dictated a reply, to the effect that the Sultan was anxious to 
reestablish his amicable relations with England, and had appointed Allett 
Effendi to treat on his behalf. The unsuspecting admiral, who, by reason 
of Mr. Arbuthnot's illness, undertook the negotiation, was no match for 
the French general in diplomacy, and readily fell into the snare. Day 
after day passed in the exchange of notes and diplomatic communications; 
and, meanwhile, the entire defence having been intrusted to Sebastiani, 
the batteries of the capital, and along the whole straits through which 
the British fleet would have to retire, were put in order. The guns were 
mounted, ammunition supplied, men trained to the use of the cannon, and 
in short, preparations of the most formidable description were in rapid 
progress, while the English admiral remained inactive and credulous in 
the harbor of Constantinople : when at length he became sensible of his 
folly, and thought of retreating from his dangerous position, the wind had 
changed to the southwest, and rendered his escape, for the time, impos- 
sible. Fortunately, on the first of March, a breeze sprung up from the 
east, all sails were spread, and the fleet reentered the perilous straits. 
The passage was disputed with great spirit, but the inexperience of the 
Turkish gunners prevented their improving to the utmost their advan- 
tage; and the British ships escaped the scene of danger with a loss of 
only two hundred and fifty men. 

Sir John Duckworth, as soon as he had passed the straits, took posses- 
sion of Lemnos and Tenedos, and established a strict blockade at the 
entrance to the Dardanelles from the Archipelago ; and as a similar 
measure was adopted by the Russian fleet at the mouth of the Bosphorus, 
the Turks soon began to suffer from famine. After a time, their neces- 
sities became so urgent, that they manned their ships of war and boldly 
determined to attack the Russian squadron. The result was what might 
have been anticipated. Four of their ships of the line were taken, three 
burned, and the remainder driven back. This action occurred on the 1st 
of July, 1807. 

In the mean time, an event of great importance ha.d occurred in Eng- 
land. This was the dismissal of the Whig ministry, on the 24th of March, 
and the appointment on the Sth of April of a new cabinet, having among 
its members Mr. Canning and Lord Castlereagh. 

This change of ministry was followed by an immediate change in the 
policy of Great Britain with respect to continental affairs. The men who 
now succeeded to the charge of her foreign relations, had been educated 
in the school of Mr. Pitt, and early imbibed his feelings of hostility toward 

1807.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 213 

the French Revolution. They were strongly impressed with the disastrous 
effects of the economical system of their predecessors, which had led them 
to withhold their resources at the decisive moment, when a proper appli- 
cation of them might have brought the war to a triumphant conclusion ; 
they did their utmost to atone for past errors, by renewing the alliances 
of Great Britain with the continental powers : and in the case of Prussia, 
they advanced liberal subsidies, together with arms and ammunition. 
But it was too late to restore the relations of cordiality that existed between 
England and Russia in the preceding year, as the Czar could not forgive 
the ungracious refusal of aid solicited by him from the cabinet of London 
before the battle of Pultusk. 



THE two armies under Benningsen and Napoleon, remained in a state 
of tranquillity for nearly four months after the battle of Eylau ; but during 
this time, some comparatively trivial operations had been undertaken by 
detached parties of the respective nations, and the siege of Dantzic was 
maintained with a force proportionate to its importance. This city, for- 
merly one of the most flourishing of the Hanse Towns, had fallen to the 
lot of Prussia on the last partition of Poland, in 1794 ; and though it had 
much declined in wealth and population since that disastrous period, it 
was still a place of strength and consideration. Its situation at the mouth 
of the Vistula gave it a monopoly of the commerce of Poland, which con- 
sisted in the export of immense quantities of wheat and the import of the 
productions of almost every civilized country. The fortifications of 
Dantzic were strong, but its principal defence lay in the marshy nature 
of the ground in its vicinity which was traversed only by a few dikes, 
and in the power which the besieged had of inundating the country to 
the extent of several miles, by the sluices of the Vistula. The garrison 
was composed of twelve thousand Prussians and five thousand Russians, 
under the command of Field-marshal Kalkreuth. 

As early as the middle of February, Napoleon gave orders for the 
more vigorous prosecution of the siege, and detached a large body of his 
best troops for that purpose. The besieging force proceeded by regular 
approaches, took the several outworks of the place one after another, and 
by the 7th of May, the garrison, though well furnished with provisions, 
began to fail in ammunition. As the numbers of the French enabled 
them to resist every attempt of the Russians to throw supplies into the 
town, this deficiency soon rendered its defence impossible for any great 
length of time ; and on the 24th of May, its commander was forced to 
capitulate. The garrison was permitted to retire with their arms and the 
honors of war, on condition of not serving against France for a year, or 
until regularly exchanged ; and Dantzic, with its nine hundred pieces of 
cannon, fell into the hands of the French troops. 

On the reopening of the campaign between the two armies, BenningseD 


was able to muster but a hundred and twenty thousand men, which num- 
ber included the detached corps of sixteen thousand Prussians and Rus- 
sians, under Lestocq, in front of Koningsberg, and the left wing, fifteen 
thousand strong, under Tolstoy, on the Narew ; so that the force to be 
relied on in direct opposition to Napoleon, was scarcely ninety thousand 
men. The exertions of the French Emperor had assembled a much 
larger force. Exclusive of an army of observation on the Elbe, and the 
garrisons and blockading corps in his rear, no less than a hundred and 
fifty thousand infantry and thirty-five thousand cavalry were ready for 
immediate action on the Passarge and the Narew. Hence, vast as were 
the resources of Russia when she had time to collect into one focus her 
unwieldy strength, she was now overmatched on her own frontier. 

After the fall of Dantzic, Benningsen was induced by the exposed situa- 
tion of Ney's corps at Guttstadt, on the right bank of the Passarge, mid- 
way between the two armies, to hazard an attack on that insulated body. 
Early on the morning of the 5th of June, the Russian army was put in 
motion for the accomplishment of this enterprise, and two feigned attacks 
were made on the fortified bridges of Spandau and Lomitten, in order to 
distract the enemy's attention : these attacks were so spiritedly main- 
tained, that the French officers conceived the forcing of the bridge to be 
the chief object of the Russian commander. Meanwhile, the real attack 
was directed against Ney, seven miles to the right of the Passarge, and 
seemed to promise perfect success, as the French marshal was taken en- 
tirely by surprise. But the Russians advanced in detachments, and strict 
orders had been given not to begin the battle until all were on the ground ; 
consequently, some delays having occurred on the march, Ney was en- 
abled to recover from his confusion, and organize a retreat before the 
Russians assailed him. The action at length commenced at two o'clock; 
Guttstadt was carried by assault, and four hundred prisoners, with several 
guns and a quantity of magazines, were taken ; but, owing to the dilatory 
movements of the Russians, Ney retired with comparatively little loss 
to Aukendorfj where he passed the night, and the next day he made good 
his retreat to Dippen. Napoleon took measures to retaliate this attack, 
by a general advance upon the Russian position ; but Benningsen had no 
desire to meet the whole French army with his inferior numbers, and 
accordingly withdrew to the camp at Heilsberg, which he had previously 
intrenched with great care. 

Napoleon pursued the retreating columns to their intrenchments, and, 
on the 10th of June, prepared for a general attack. He prevailed in the 
first instance, and two French regiments established themselves within 
the Russian redoubts ; but they were soon charged, broken and totally 
destroyed. Following up this success, the Russians sallied forth upon 
the plain, and forced Soult's division to give ground. At the same time, 
the divisions of St. Cyr, St. Hilaire and Legrand, which had penetrated to 
the foot of the redoubts along the line, were driven back with great loss ; 
and at this junctur/e, when the French were retiring at all points, night 
terminated the action. 

At eleven o'clock, in the night, a deserter from the French was brought 
to Benningsen's head-quarters and informed him that a fresh attack was 
about to be made. The Russians immediately stood to their arms, and 
were scarcely prepared for the new movement, when, by the uncertain 
starlight, dark masses of the enemy were seen to emerge from the woods 

1808.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 215 

and advance at a rapid pp.ce in silence across the plain. The Russian 
artillery opened a deadly fire on the columns, which, staggering under 
the discharge, still pressed on without returning a shot. But when they 
arrived within range of the musketry, the storm of balls and bullets com- 
bined became so vehement, that they were forced to give way, and fled in 
great confusion and with frightful loss to their own lines. 

Napoleon was extremely disconcerted by this repulse, and vented his ill- 
humor in violent sallies of passion against his generals. The butchery 
had been useless. Twelve thousand Frenchmen had fallen around the 
several Russian redoubts, without having gained the mastery of one ; and 
the ditches were filled with their dead bodies, but none of them had been 
crossed. The loss of the Russians amounted to nearly eight thousand 
Finding, thus, that the camp at Heilsberg could not be forced, Napo- 
leon resolved to turn it, and dispatched Davoust's corps on the Landsberg 
road toward Eylau and Koningsberg. This movement alarmed Ben- 
ningsen, who, though not apprehensive of any attack in front, was with 
reason fearful of being cut off from his supplies at Koningsberg ; and as 
the French testified a determination to manosuvre on his right flank, he 
gave orders to retreat to Bartenstein, which place he reached on the fol- 
lowing day without molestation. The same movement on the part of 
the French induced Lestocq to fall back from Braunsberg ; but as both he 
and Benningsen were traversing the circumference of the arc while the 
French were marching on its chord, the latter necessarily gained upon 
the Russians, and eventually not only interposed between them and Ko* 
ningsberg, but were in a position whence, by a rapid advance on Wehlau, 
they might cut off the retreat to the Russian frontier. Under these oir, 
cumstances, Benningsen found it indispensable to push forward by a 
forced march to Friedland, where, by great exertions, he arrived on the 
13th of June. 

Friedland is a considerable town on the left bank of the river Alle, 
which there flows in a northerly direction toward the Baltic. The wind- 
ings of the river encircle the town on the south and east, and an artificial 
lake covers it on the north, so that, in a military point of view, it is acces- 
sible only on the western side, where the roads to and from Eylau, Ko- 
ningsberg, Wehlau and Tilsit all concentre. 

On the night of his arrival, Benningsen learned that the corps of Lannes 
was lying at Postheneu, a village about three miles from Friedland on 
the Koningsberg road, unsupported as yet by any of the other divisions of 
the French army. He therefore resolved to attack (his isolated force, and 
at four o'clock in the morning of the 14th, his vanguard was defiling over 
the bridge of Friedland. Lannes's corps consisted of fifteen thousand men,, 
and as a preponderance of numbers could be brought against them by the 
Russians, the expedition promised well, provided its success was imme- 
diate : but if Lannes could hold the enemy in check until the other 
French divisions, which were rapidly advancing, reached the field, the 
Russians in turn would be outnumbered, and that, too, in a most disad- 
vantageous position, as a single bridge formed their sole line both of 
advance and retreat. Benningsen weighed well these circumstances, and 
at first passed but one division over the bridge ; but as this met with an 
unexpected resistance, he ordered others to follow, and in the mean time 
threw three pontoon bridges across the river to provide for a disaster. 



By degrees, as the increasing masses of the French showed that other 
corps had arrived to support Lannes, the whole Russian army passed 
over, and Benningsen, contrary to his original intention, found himself 
involved in a general action. 

At "one o'clock in the afternoon, Napoleon arrived at the heights of 
Heinrichsdorf, which overlooked the whole field, and dispatched his staff 
with orders for the battle. The corps of Ney, Victor and Mortier, together 
with the infantry and cavalry of the Imperial Guard had already come 
up, and were soon followed by a part of Murat's dragoons, so that the 
Ernperor, confident of victory, remarked, "this is the anniversary of Ma- 
rengo ; the battle could not have been fought on a more propitious day." 
The French force in the field now amounted to eighty thousand men ; 
while Benningsen, who had detached a considerable force to the rear to 
secure the bridge over the Pregel at Wehlau, should a retreat become 
necessary, could bring but forty-six thousand to resist the attack. The 
general result of the action, therefore, may be said to have been decided 
by the preliminary movements, for the defeat of Benningsen was inevita- 
ble, with such a fearful majority of numbers against him. 

Nevertheless, the battle was contested by the Russians with prodigious 
bravery. By the resistless weight of the opposing masses, they were 
indeed gradually forced back to Friedland, through its streets, and across 
the river ; but when the whole fire of the French infantry and artillery 
was concentrated on their columns, and this was followed up by a despe- 
rate charge of Murat's cuirassiers and dragoons, they retired with the 
steadiness and precision of field-day evolutions not one square was 
broken, not one gun captured during the retreat. Indeed, the result of 
the action furnishes the best proof of the unconquerable valor of the 
Russian troops. Seventeen thousand of them remained on the field killed 
or wounded ; five hundred only were made prisoners ; no standards were 
taken ; and but seventeen pieces of cannon, lost early in the day, fell 
into the hands of the enemy. On the other hand, the French lost two 
eagles and eight thousand men. 

After the battle, the Russians retired in good order to Wehlau, which 
they reached on the 15th, without being pursued or molested by Napo- 
leon. In the mean time, Lestocq had advanced to Koningsberg, where, 
forming a junction with Karnenskoi, he was enabled to show an array of 
twenty-four thousand men ; with which force he resolved to make a stand 
against the fifty thousand who were approaching, under Soult and Da- 
voust, until the large magazines in the town were removed. His heroic 
efforts were crowned with brilliant success. For two entire days he re- 
sisted every attempt of the French host to dislodge him, conveyed the 
magazines and military stores to a place of safety in the rear, and on the 
17th effected his retreat with little loss to Wehlau, where he joined the 
main army. Benningsen continued his retreat on the same day, reached 
Tilsit on the 18th. and during the 19th and 20th crossed the Niemen at 
that place, arid burned the bridge behind him. 

The Ernperor Alexander, disheartened by the defeat and loss he had 
sustained, foiled in the objects for which he had undertaken the war, and 
deserted by those for whose advantage, more than for his own, he had 
joined the alliance against France, was now desirous for peace ; and 
communicated his wishes, through Prince Bagrathion, to the French com- 
mander. These advances gave Napoleon the greatest satisfaction ; for, 


though as yet victorious over the Muscovite legions, he had learned to 
appreciate their prowess in the field, and knew, also, that his further pro- 
gress toward the Russian dominions would, in the end, reverse the pro- 
portion of numbers now existing between his own army and that of his 
antagonist. With these dispositions on both sides, there was little diffi- 
culty in coming to an understanding. France had nothing to ask from 
Russia, but that she should promote the Continental System by closing her 
ports against England : and Russia had nothing to demand of France, 
but that she should withdraw her armies from Poland and permit Alex- 
ander to pursue his projects of conquest in Turkey. An armistice, 
therefore, was immediately concluded. The Niemen separated the two 
armies ; Napoleon established his head-quarters at Tilsit, and Alexander, 
at Piktuhpohnen, on the opposite bank of the river. 

On the 25th of June, the two Emperors held a private conference on a 
raft moored in the middle of the Niemen, the respective armies being 
drawn up in triple lines on both sides of the stream. The interview 
lasted two hours, and ended in the establishment of a good understanding 
and perfectly friendly relations between the two sovereigns. On the fol- 
lowing day, they met again at Tilsit, where they were joined by the King 
of Prussia ; and, after a fortnight of conference, two treaties were defi- 
nitively concluded ; one, between France and Russia, and the other 
between France and Prussia. 

By the former, Napoleon agreed to restore to the King of Prussia, Sile- 
sia and nearly all his German dominions on the right bank of the Elbe, 
with the fortresses on the Oder and in Pomerania. The provinces which, 
prior to 1772, formed part of the kingdom of Poland, and had since then 
been annexed to Prussia, were erected into a separate principality, to be 
called the Grand Duchy of Warsaw, and bestowed on the King of Sax- 
ony. Dantzic, with a limited portion of territory in its neighborhood, 
was declared a free and independent city, under the protection of the 
Kings of Prussia and Saxony ; which was, in effect, declaring it a fron- 
tier town of France. A right to a free military road across the Prussian 
states, was granted to the King of Saxony, to connect his German with 
his Polish dominions. The navigation of the Vistula was declared free 
to Prussia, Saxony and Dantzic ; the Dukes of Oldenberg and Mecklen- 
berg were reinstated in their dominions, on condition, however, that their 
harbors should be occupied by French troops ; the Kings of Naples and 
Holland, with the Confederation of the Rhine, were recognized by the 
Emperor of Russia ; a new kingdom, styled that of Westphalia, was 
erected in favor of Jerome Bonaparte, composed of the Prussian provinces 
on the left bank of the Elbe ; hostilities were to cease between Russia 
and Turkey; Wallachia and Moldavia were to be evacuated by the 
Russians, but not occupied by the Turks until the conclusion of a gen- 
eral peace ; and the Emperors of Russia and France mutually guaran- 
tied their respective dominions, and agreed to establish commercial 
relations w'tb each other on the most favorable footing. 

By the second treaty, the King of Prussia recognized the Confederation 
of the Rhine, and the Kings of Naples. Holland and Westphalia. He 
ceded to the kings or princes who should be designated by Napoleon, all 
the dominions which, at the commencement of the war, he possessed be- 
tween the Rhine and the Elbe, and engaged to offer no opposition to any 
arrangement in regard to them, which his Imperial majesty might choose 


to adopt. He also ceded to the King of Saxony the circle of Gotha, in 
Lower Lusatia ; he renounced all right to his acquisitions in Poland sub- 
sequent to January 1st, 1772, and to the city and territory of Dantzic ; 
consented to close his harbors to the ships and commerce of Great Brit- 
ain ; and entered into a contract for the restoration of the strong-holds of 
Prussia at certain fixed periods, and the payment of the sums necessary 
for their civil and military evacuation. These concessions, together with 
the enormous contributions exacted by Napoleon, entirely paralyzed the 
strength of Prussia, and rendered her for a long time incapable of extri- 
cating herself from that iron net in which she was enveloped by the 
French troops. 

But the important changes announced in these two treaties, were not 
the only consequences of the interviews at Tilsit. By a secret conven- 
tion concluded at the same time between the two Emperors, Turkey was 
abandoned almost without reserve to the Russian Autocrat ; and, in re- 
turn, Alexander agreed that if England should decline to make peace 
with France on certain terms designated by Napoleon, " France and 
Russia would jointly summon the three courts of Copenhagen, Stockholm 
and Lisbon, to close their harbors against English vessels, recall their 
ambassadors from London, and declare war against Great Britain." By 
a further agreement, the dominions of the pope, as well as Malta and 
Egypt, were ceded to France ; the sovereigns of the houses of Bourbon 
and Braganza in the Spanish Peninsula, were to be replaced by princes 
of the family of Napoleon ; and when the final partition of the Turkish 
Empire should take place, Wallachia, Moldavia, Servia and Bulgaria 
were to be allotted to Russia; and Greece, Macedonia, Dalmatia and the 
seaports of the Adriatic, to France. 



WHEN the battle of Trafalgar destroyed Napoleon's prospect of inva- 
ding England, and extinguished his hope of soon bringing the maritime 
war to a successful issue, he did not abandon the contest in despair. He 
readily saw that his preparations in the Channel must go for nothing, 
that the flotilla at Boulogne would fall to pieces before a fleet capable of 
protecting its passage could be assembled, and that every successive 
year would enable England more exclusively to monopolize the com- 
merce of the world, and drive his flag more completely from the ocean. 
Yet, fertile in resource, indomitable in resolution, implacable in hatred, 
he resolved to change the method, not the object of his hostility ; and 
indulged the belief that he could succeed, through the extent and terror 
of his continental victories, in achieving England's destruction by a pro- 
cess more slow, but perhaps more certain. 

The first part of his plan was to combine the European states in one 
great alliance against England, and compel them to exclude the British flag 

1807.1 HISTORY OF EUROPE. 219 

and British merchandise from their harbors. The second part was, to 
obtain possession by fraud, or force, or negotiation, of all the fleets of 
Europe, and gradually bring them to a central point near the English 
coast, whence he could eventually make his long-contemplated descent 
upon that country. By the Continental System he hoped to weaken the 
resources of England, to decrease her revenue, and spread commercial 
distress through her borders, until the unanimity of her inhabitants should 
be destroyed, and thus prepare the way for the grand assault, which was 
his ultimate reliance. With an eye to the same end, he constantly ex- 
erted himself to increase his own naval force. Amid all the expenditure 
of his military campaigns, he proposed to construct, and to a certain ex- 
tent actually did construct, from ten to twenty ships of the line every 
year, while vast sums were annually expended on the naval harbors of 
Antwerp, Flushing, Cherbourg and Brest. 

It was in pursuance of these projects that, on the 21st of November. 
1808, he issued a proclamation from Berlin since known as the Berlin 
Decree declaring that " The British islands are in a state of blockade. 
Every species of commerce and communication with them is prohibited ; 
all packages or letters addressed in English, or in English characters, 
shall be seized at the Post Office ; all British subjects, of whatever rank 
or condition, who shall be found in the countries occupied by our troops, 
or those of our allies, shall be made prisoners of war; every warehouse, 
merchandise, or property of any sort, belonging to a subject of Great 
Britain, or coming from its manufactories or colonies, is declared lawful 
prize. Half the value of confiscated property shall be applied to indem- 
nifying merchants whose vessels have been seized by the English crui- 
sers. No vessels coming directly from England, or any of her colonies, 
shall be received into any of our harbors ; and every vessel which, by 
means of a false declaration shall have effected such entry, shall be con- 
fiscated. The prize-court of Paris is intrusted with the determination of 
all questions arising out of this decree in France and the countries occu-' 
pied by our armies; that of Milan, with the decision of similar questions 
in the kingdom of Italy. This decree shall be communicated to the Kings 
of Spain, Naples, Holland and Etruria, and to our allies whose subjects, 
like ours, have been victims of the injustice and barbarity of British 

Such was the famous Berlin Decree, and orders were dispatched for its 
immediate and vigorous execution. Its unjust character and ruinous ten- 
dency was so strongly felt in Holland, that Louis Bonaparte, the king, at 
first positively refused to submit to its enforcement, and for some time 
could be prevailed on to promulgate it only in foreign countries occupied 
by the Dutch troops. In the north of Germany it was vigorously carried 
into effect, and was made the pretext for a thousand iniquitous extortions 
and abuses, which greatly augmented its oppression. An army of locusts, 
in the form of inspectors, custorn-house officers and other functionaries, 
fell on the countries occupied by the French troops, and made the search 
for English goods a plea for innumerable frauds. 

The English government replied to the Berlin Decree, by an Order ra 
Council, on the 7th of January, 1807, declaring that, "No vessel shall be 
permitted to trade from one port to another, if both belong to France and 
her allies, and shall be so far under their control, as that British vessels are 
excluded therefrom ; and the captains of all British vessels are hereby 



required to warn every neutral vessel coming from any such port, destined 
to such other port, to discontinue her voyage ; and any vessel, after being 
So warned, or after having had a reasonable time allowed it for obtaining 
information of the present Order in Council, which shall, notwithstanding, 
persist in such voyage to such other port, shall be declared good prize." 
This Order was soon after modified in favor of vessels containing grain or 
provisions for Great Britain, and of all vessels whatever, belonging to the 
Hanse Towns, if employed in any trade to or from the British dominions. 

After the treaty of Tilsit had subjected the Continent to the control of 
Napoleon, it appeared that some more vigorous and extensive retaliation 
was indispensable on the part of Great Britain. A few months' experi- 
ence showed that the Berlin Decree, by prohibiting the importation of every 
kind of British produce, necessarily left the Continental market open to 
the manufacturing industry and colonial produce of other states. The 
obvious and direct reply would have been to prohibit the importation into 
the British dominions of the produce of France and its dependencies ; but 
a little reflection showed that this would accomplish only a partial retri- 
butive effect, by reason of the comparatively great extent of British com- 
merce and manufactures. Therefore, on the llth of November, 1807, a 
new Order in Council was issued declaring France and all the Continent- 
al powers allied with her, in a state of blockade, and that all vessels were 
good prize which should be bound for any of their harbors, excepting 
such as had previously touched at, or cleared from, a British port. 

Napoleon replied to this by a new decree issued from Milan, on the 
17th of December, 1807, declaring, that " every vessel, of whatever na- 
tion, which shall have submitted to be searched by British cruisers, or 
paid any impost levied by the British government, shall be considered as 
having lost the privileges of a neutral flag, and declared good prize. 
Every vessel, of whatever nation, and with whatever cargo, coming from 
any British harbor, or from any of the British colonies, or from any 
country occupied by British troops, or bound for Great Britain, or for 
British colonies, or for any country occupied by the British troops, is also 
declared good prize." 

It may safely be affirmed that the rage of belligerent powers and 
the mutual violation of the law of nations, could not go beyond these 
furious manifestoes. But, such was the exasperation now produced on 
both sides, by the long continuance and desperate character of the contest, 
the feelings of generosity and the dictates of prudence were alike forgotten. 
Nevertheless, the very extravagance of these notable decrees, by render- 
ing their strict execution impossible, led from the first to a system of 
unlimited evasion, of which Napoleon himself set the example. He SQOK 
discovered that a lucrative source of revenue might be opened by granting, 
at exorbitant prices, licenses to import British produce and manufactures, 
a condition was attached to the license, that an equal amount of French 01 
Continental produce should be exported ; but this was readily evaded by 
making up cargoes of old and almost worthless merchandise, and ship- 
ping it under a fictitious certificate of value. Thus arose a system, the 
most extraordinary and inconsistent that ever was known upon the earth. 
While the two government* were carrying on their commercial warfare 
with daily increasing virulence ; while Napoleon denounced the penalty 
of death against every public functionary who should connive at the intro- 
duction of British merchandise, and consigned to the flames, whatever of 


such property could by fiscal cupidity be discovered in the extensive 
dominions subject to his control ; while, too, the English court of admi- 
ralty daily condemned merchant vessels which had contravened the Orders 
in Council, and issued the strictest injunctions to their cruisers to carry 
them into full execution both governments openly violated the very de- 
crees to which they required such implicit obedience. British licenses 
were sold at the public offices in London, and became the vehicles of an 
immense trade with the Continent ; and Napoleon finally carried this 
illicit traffic to such a height as to decree, that " no vessel shall sail from 
any of our ports for any foreign port, unless provided with a license 
signed by our own hand.' 5 Hence, the Continental System and the re- 
taliatory measures of Great Britain were virtually abandoned by the two 
governments, though rigorously exacted as the first of public duties from 
their subjects. As, therefore, the commerce in British merchandise 
did not, in fact, diminish on the Continent, the suffering experienced in 
England during this period, was not at all owing to the Berlin Decree, 
but to the loss of the North American market, which the Orders in Council 
ultimately closed against British productions. Thus Napoleon, in this 
measure, on which he staked his influence, his fame, his throne, was, after 
all, governed by the same regard to inferior interests which prompted the 
Dutch, in*former times, to sell ammunition and provisions at exorbitant 
prices to the inhabitants of a town besieged by their armies resolved, in 
any case, to make a gain by the warfare, and if they could not subdue the 
enemy, at least to exact a large pecuniary profit from his necessities. 

The return of Napoleon to Paris, after the termination of the Polish 
campaign, was hailed by the universal rejoicing of the inhabitants : and, 
in truth, they had never before such cause for exultation. The great 
contest seemed to be over : their standards had been advanced in triumph 
to the Niemen, the strength of Prussia was, to all appearance, irrevocably 
broken, Austria was thoroughly overawed, and Russia, from being an 
inveterate and fearful antagonist, had become the sworn friend of the 
French Empire. Such a series of triumphs as Napoleon had achieved, 
might have turned the heads of a nation less passionately devoted than 
the French to military glory, but the oratorical welcomes of the public 
bodies in Paris transgressed every allowable limit. They manifested, not 
the enthusiasm of freemen, but the adulation of slaves. "We cannot 
adequately praise your majesty," said Lacepede, president of the Senate ; 
" your glory is too dazzling ; those only who are placed at the distance of 
posterity can appreciate its immense elevation." " The only eloge worthy 
of the Emperor," said the president of the Court of Cassation, "is the 
simple narrative of his reign ; the most unadorned recital of what he has 
wished, thought and executed ; of their effects, past, present and to come." 
" The conception," said Count de Tabre, a senator, " which the mother 
of Napoleon received in her bosom, could have flowed only from divine in- 

Napoleon took this favorable opportunity to eradicate the last remnant 
of popular freedom from the Constitution, by suppressing the Tribunate 
and thenceforward, the discussion on laws proposed by the government, 
was intrusted to three commissioners, chosen from the legislative body 
by the Emperor. As this blow at the last popular point in the Const itu 
ion was received with shouts of approval from Calais to the Pyrenees, 
Napoleon next issued a decree, prohibiting booksellers from publishing 


any work, until it had received the sanction of the censors of the press, 
and subjecting the periodicals and daily journals to the same restriction. 
This censorship was carried to such an extent, that when the allies en. 
tered France in 1814, they found a large portion of the inhabitants igno- 
rant of the fact, that the battle of Trafalgar had ever been fought. The 
years of the Empire are an absolute blank in French literary annals, so 
far as all matters relating to government, political thought, or moral sen- 
iment are concerned. Whoever attentively considers the situation of 
France at this period, will perceive the unsoundness of the common no- 
tion, that the press is, under all circumstances, the bulwark of liberty, 
and that despotism is impossible where it is in operation. Thf>v will 
rather concur in the opinion of Madame de Stael, that the effect of this 
mighty agent is entirely dependent on the power which gains possession 
of its resources; that only in a peculiar state of the public mind, and 
when a certain balance exists between political parties, can it be used 
beneficially on the side of freedom ; and that at other periods, or under 
the influence of more corrupt feelings, it may become the instrument of 
the most immovable popular or imperial despotism that ever was riveted 
upon mankind. 

Individual authors of that period were persecuted with unuaralleled 
severity. Madame de Stael, long the object of Napoleon's hostility, from 
the vigor of her understanding, and the fearlessness of her conduct, was 
at first banished forty leagues from Paris ; then confined to her chAteau 
on the Lake of Geneva, where she dwelt many years, and sought in 
vain, in the discharge of every filial duty to her venerable father, to con- 
sole herself for the loss of the intellectual society of Paris. At length, 
the espionnage to which she was subjected, forced her to flee in disguise 
to Vienna; and, hunted thence by the French emissaries, she continued 
her flight through Poland into Muscovy, where she found that freedom 
which old Europe could no longer afford. Her immortal work on Ger- 
many was seized by the orders of the police and burned, and France 
owes the preservation of one of the brightest, jewels in her literary coro- 
net, to the fortuitous concealment of one copy from the myrmidons of 
Savary. ^The world has no cause to regrei the severity of Napoleon to 
this illustrious exile, whatever his biographer may have ; for it gave 
birth to the Dix Annees d'Exil, the three volumes on Germany, and the 
profound views on the British Constitution with which she has enriched 
her work on the Revolution in France. 

Napoleon's next attack was directed against the judicial establishment, 
by reducing the term of service of the judges; who, thenceforward, in- 
stead of holding office for life, were appointed for five years, and even 
this period was liable to be summarily abridged at the Emperor's pleas- 
ure. He also labored with great earnestness to reconstruct a nobility 
for the Empire, well knowing that a permanent aristocracy would prove 
the best possible safeguard for the continuance of his dynasty : this pro- 
ject, however, was but partially successful, as the legitimate materials 
for constructing such a political establishment were annihilated by the 
Reis:n of Terror. 

But, though the government of Napoleon was thus in all respects de- 
spotic, it possessed the great advantage to the people of being also regu- 
lar, conservative and systematic. The taxes were heavy, but the public 
expenditure was immense, and enabled the inhabitants to pay their 

1807.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 223 

assessments with facility. No forced loans or arbitrary confiscations, as 
in the time of the Republic, swept off at a blow the accumulations of 
years ; no uncertainty as to enjoying the fruits of ind'istry, paralyzed 
the hand of the laborer. The stoppage of all external commerce, com- 
bined with the constantly increasing disbursements of the government, 
produced an unprecedented degree of vigor in domestic manufactures, 
and internal communication ; roads and canals spread out in every 
direction, and were covered with wagons or boats laden with the richest 
merchandise, while the agriculturalist found an ample market for his pro- 
duce in the vast consumption of the armies. Beet-root was extensively 
cultivated as a substitute for sugar-cane; and although the sugar ob- 
tained from that vegetable was inferior in richness to the West India 
commodity, it was superior in clearness and delicacy, and, as a native 
production, was justly admired. .Lyons, Rouen and the Flemish towns, 
again resounded with the activity of the artisan, their ruined looms were 
restored, their empty warehouses replenished, and the internal consump- 
tion of the Empire, deprived of foreign competition, rapidly raised from 
the dust that which the Revolution seemed to have irrevocably destroyed. 
Among the causes that led to the national wealth and prosperity of 
France, at this period, should also be mentioned the enormous sums 
which were exacted from half of Europe, in the shape of subsidies and 
contributions, and expended, directly or indirectly, for the benefit of the 
French people. In truth, all the great public works thenceforward un- 
dertaken by the Emperor, and which have added so much to the lustre 
of his name, were constructed by the funds wrung from the suffering 
inhabitants of his conquered territories. 

Amid this general prosperity, however, individual freedom expired. 
A Penal Code was enacted, which enumerated no less than two hundred 
and eighty state crimes, including such minute and trivial actions, and 
requiring for conviction evidence so slender, that every man's life and 
liberty were at the Emperor's disposal. And the impossibility of flight 
from this persecution aggravated its horrors. In former days, by es- 
caping across the frontier, a person suspected or accused might gain an 
asylum in an adjoining state ; but now, the influence of the Imperial 
authority pursued the fugitive to the remotest corner of Europe, and he 
could find no resting-place on the Continent till he had passed the bound- 
aries of civilization, and sojourned among the semi- barbarous tribes on the 
confines of Asia. In the Ukraine, or in the provinces of Asiatic Turkey, 
he might be safe ; but, excepting the unsubdued territories of the British 
Empire, no other refuge could be found from the vengeance of Napoleon. 

The levying of the conscription was another frightful feature in this 
age of despotism. The law was applied to every male individual in the 
realm, of the prescribed age, those alone excepted who were ill of in vet 
erate asthma, spitting of blood, or incipient consumption. No Frenchman 
liable, or who had once been liable to the conscription, could hold any 
public office, enjoy any public salary, exercise any public right, receive 
any legacy, or inherit any property, unless he produced a certificate that 
he had obeyed the law and was legally exempt, or was in actual service, 
or had been regularly discharged, or had not been required to perform 
the military duties. Those who failed to join the army within the time 
prescribed in their summons, were deprived of their civil rights, and 
denounced to all the gendarmerie in the Empire as deserters. Eleven 


depots were established for the punishment of the refractory, where they 
wore the uniform and received the fare of convicts, and were compelled 
to labor on the fortifications or public works without pay. And when 
the terrors of this treatment were found insufficient to bring the conscripts 
into the ranks, it was ordered that the delinquents should be fined fifteen 
hundred francs and sentenced to three years' hard labor in the provinces, 
with their heads shaved and their beards uncut. If they afterward de- 
serted from the army, they were sentenced to ten years' hard labor in a 
frontier location, to be fed on bread and water, and wear a ball of eight 
pounds' weight attached to the leg by a chain. Such were the punish- 
ments which awaited the youth of France, if they attempted to evade a 
conscription that was sending them to the grave at the late of two hun- 
dred and twenty thousand a year. 

The political changes in Central Europe, consequent -on the treaty of 
Tilsit, were rapidly developed. On his route to Paris, Napoleon met a 
deputation of the principal nobles of Prussian Poland at Dresden, where 
Talleyrand produced a Constitution for the Grand Duchy of Warsaw, 
declaring the ducal crown to be hereditary in the Saxon family. The 
Grand-Duke was invested with the sole executive power, and he alone had 
the privilege of proposing laws to the Diet, which held the prerogative of 
passing or rejecting them. The Diet was composed of eighteen senators 
appointed by him, embracing six bishops and twelve lay nobles, and a 
Chamber of Deputies containing a hundred members, sixty of whom were 
elected by the nobility and forty by the boroughs. The powers of the 
Chamber were limited to mere decisions on the arguments laid before 
them by the orators of the Diet, and this mockery of a Parliament was 
to assemble only for fifteen days in every two years. The ardent ple- 
beian noblesse, whose democratic passions had so long brought desolation 
on their country, found little in this charter to gratify their political 
views ; but a substantial improvement was made in the condition of the 
peasantry, by a clause declaring all the serfs to be free. 

The Constitution of Westphalia was, in like manner, founded on the 
model of that of France. It provided for a King, Council of State, Senate, 
silent aristocratic Legislature and public orators, all cast in the Parisian 
mould. The throne was declared hereditary in the family of Jerome 
Bonaparte ; one half of the allodial territories of the former sovereigns, 
of which the new kingdom was composed, were placed at the disposal of 
Napoleon as a fund from which to form estates for his military followers; 
provision was made for the payment of the contributions levied by France 
before any part of the revenue could reach the new king; the kingdom 
was joined to the Confederation of the Rhine, and the standing army re- 
quired to be kept on foot for the service of France, when needed, was 
fixed at twenty-five thousand men. In default of the king's heirs-male, 
the throne was to succeed to Napoleon and his heirs by birth or adoption. 

The same plan of government was adopted in Oldenberg, Mecklen- 
burg, Dantzic, Hamburg, Bremen, Lubec and all the Hanse Towns ; 
in every instance, the harbors were closed, commerce was annihilated, 
and the military exactions of France reduced the whole to indigence and 
almost to bankruptcy. 

While the diplomatists of Europe were speculating on the extinction of 
Prussia as an independent power, and the only question appeared to be, 
what fortunate neighbor would acquire her territories, a new and im- 

1807.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 225 

proved system was adopted in the several branches of her government, 
and the foundation laid in present suffering for future triumph. The 
members of the cabinet whose temporizing and unworthy policy had so 
largely contributed to the downfall of the kingdom, were removed from 
office ; and the commanders who had so disgracefully surrendered the 
national fortresses after the battle of Jena, were in a body dismissed from 
the army. The king desired to call the intrepid and sagacious Harden- 
berg to his councils ; but the influence of Napoleon, which had long be- 
fore caused his removal from the administration, now prevented his 
return, and Baron Stein was appointed to the chief direction of the govern- 
ment. The talents and zeal of this eminent man soon produced extensive 
and salutary changes in every department, and the condition of the whole 
people was greatly improved by his wise regulations. Indeed, the ben- 
efits of his policy were so conspicuous and universal, that he, too, fell 
under the proscription of Napoleon ; and the king was reluctantly com- 
pelled to send him into honorable exile in Russia. Nevertheless, from 
his retreat in Courland he really, though privately, continued to direct 
the Prussian councils ; and by the appointment of Scharnhorst, as min- 
ister at War, a new impetus was given to the organization and increase 
of the army, which proved of immense importance in the subsequent 
struggle for European freedom. 

This officer, who served under Lestocq in the late campaign, and aided 
materially in the result of the battle of Eylau, boldly applied to the 
military department the admirable principles by which Stein had secured 
the affections of the burgher classes. He threw open to the citizens gen- 
erally the higher grades of the army, from which they had hitherto been 
excluded, abolished corporal punishments, so degrading to the spirit of 
the soldier, and silently augmented the strength of the army by evading 
a clause in the treaty with Napoleon, which provided, that Prussia should 
not keep on foot more than forty-two thousand men ; a compliance Avith 
which stipulation would at once have reduced her to the rank of a fourth- 
rate power, and disabled her from assuming an attitude of resistance to 
the encroachments of France. To elude the operation of this clause, 
and at the same time avoid any direct or obvious infringement of the 
treaty, he was careful to have no more than the prescribed number at 
any one time in arms; but the moment the young soldiers were suffi- 
ciently drilled, they were sent home, and their places supplied by others; 
who., again, after the requisite instruction, successively gave way to ad- 
ditional recruits. In this manner, the number of efficient troops gradu- 
ally rose to two hundred thousand men. 

Meantime, the inhabitants of Prussia, oppressed by foreign tyranny, 
surrounded by rapacious enemies or impotent friends, and deprived of 
their commerce, and of a market for the fruits of their industry, had no 
resource but in secret voluntary associations. The universality of suffer 
ing produced a corresponding unanimity of opinion, the divisions existing 
before the war disappeared under its calamities, and the jealousies of rank 
or class yielded to the pressure of the common distress: hence arose the 
Tugendbund, a secret society, that embraced nearly the whole male 
population of the north of Germany. A central body of directors at Ber- 
lin guided its movements provincial committees carried its orders into 
effect, and an unseen authority was obeyed from one end of the subju- 
gated provinces to the other. 


Austria had been bow^d to the earth by the disasters of Austerlitz, but 
she still possessed the physical and material resources of power; and was 
now silently, and without interruption, repairing; her losses, and taking 
measures to resume her place in the rank of independent nations. Du- 
ring the interval of hostilities, the Aulic Council were indefatigable in 
their efforts to restore the equipment and revive the spirit of the army. 
The artillery taken from the arsenal of Vienna, had been for the most 
part regained by purchase from the French government ; great exertions 
were made to supply the cavalry regiments with horses ; and the infantry 
was powerfully recruited by the return of prisoners from France, as well 
as by new enrolments on an extensive scale. 

Hitherto, the King of Sweden had bid defiance to Napoleon's threats: 
the passage around the Gulf of Bothnia was so nearly impracticable to an 
invading army, that he was comparatively secure from attack ; and, with 
the assistance of England, he did riot despair of making head against his 
enemies, even should Russia be added to their formidable league. But 
after the pacification of Tilsit, he learned that his transmarine dominions 
were held by a precarious tenure. On the 13th of July, Marshal Brune 
laid siege to the fortress of Stralsund, and although the garrison made a 
determined resistance, they were forced to surrender on the 20th of 
August, with four hundred pieces of cannon arid an immense quantity of 
mill tar} stores. 

Notwithstanding the precautions taken by the two Emperors, in their 
negotiations at Tilsit, to envelope their designs in profound secrecy, the 
British government possessed a golden key, which laid open their most 
confidential proceedings. The cabinet of London was aware of the in- 
tention of the Imperial despots to seize the fleets of Denmark and Portugal, 
almost as soon as the purpose was conceived ; and the force at Napo- 
leon's disposal left no room for doubt that the resolution would be imme- 
diately carried into effect. Indeed, the ink of the treaty was hardly dry, 
when the French troops, under Bsrnadotte and Davoust, began to defile 
in such numbers toward Holstein, as to threaten Denmark with a speedy 
loss of her continental possessions if she resisted the Emperor's demands : 
besides, it was manifest from the course of her policy, that she would 
prefer the Continental alliance, not only to a treaty with England, but also 
to a doubtful neutrality. 

Under these circumstances the British government had a serious duty 
to perform. They were menaced with an attack from the combined 
navies of Europe, amounting to one hundred and eighty sail of the line ; 
of which immense force, the fleet in the Baltic was evidently destined to 
form the right wing. They therefore resolved to deprive the allied powers 
of this important accession to their strength, and apply it to their own use. 
A large naval and military force was accordingly assembled to carry out 
this intention ; the latter, consisting of twenty thousand land-troops, and 
the former, of twenty-seven ships of the line and a large number of in- 
ferior vessels : all of which arrived safely off the harbor of Copen. 
hagen, early in August. An envoy was immediately sent on shore, to 
demand that the Danish fleet should be surrendered to the British govern- 
ment in pledge, and under an agreement for full restitution, till a general 
peace should be concluded. This demand was resisted by the prince 
royal, and Doth parties prepared to decide the question by the sword. The 
land troops commenced their disembarkation on the 19ih of August, and 

1807.1 II I S T O R Y O F E U R O P E . 227 

in three days, Copenhagen was completely invested. On the 1st of. 
September, everything being in readiness for the bombardment, the town 
was summoned, and an accommodation offered, on condition of tho sur- 
render of the Danish fleet. As the prince still rejected the proposal, the 
bombardment commenced, and continued, with brief interruptions, for 
three days and nights, during which time an eighth part of the city was 
laid in ashes. General Peymann, finding that the whole town must 
inevitably be destroyed if he persisted in the defence, at length consented 
to capitulate ; and unconditionally delivered into the hands of the British, 
the whole fleet, together with the artillery and naval stores of the capital. 
In the beginning of October, the British squadron returned to England, 
with its prize of eighteen ships of the line, fifteen frigates, six brigs, and 
twenty five gun-boats, all in excellent condition. 

In the mean time, the negotiations for peace with England, contem- 
plated by the treaty of Tilsit, were set on foot, and the cabinet of St. Pe- 
tersburg tendered their good offices to the English government for the 
conclusion of a general peace. Mr. Canning replied, that Great Britain 
was perfectly willing to treat on equitable terms, and requested a frank 
declaration of the secret articles of the treaty with France, as the best 
pledge of the friendly and pacific intentions of the Emperor Alexander. 
This demand was evaded, and while the negotiations were in progress, 
intelligence arrived of the capture of the Danish fleet. Even then, the 
Russian Emperor was disposed to treat ; but a peremptory note from Na- 
poleon, insisting on the immediate and full execution of the treaty, com- 
pelled him to dismiss the English minister from St. Petersburg, and pro- 
claim anew -the principles of the Confederacy, This measure was 
followed on the part of Russia, by a declaration of war against Sweden, 
and the occupation, by the Muscovite troops, of a considerable portion of 
the Swedish territory : while Denmark resented the capture of her ships 
by entering into a close alliance with France. About the same time, Tur- 
key, finding herself betrayed and abandoned by France, notwithstanding 
the stipulations in the treaty of Tilsit, broke off her friendly connexions 
with the French Emperor, and prepared to renew the war with Russia. 

In the month of November, Napoleon made a journey to Italy, where 
important political changes were in progress. Destined, like all the sub- 
ordinate thrones which surrounded the French Empire, to share in the 
rapid mutations which that government underwent, the kingdom of Italy 
was required to alter its Constitution. Napoleon ordered the Legislative 
body to be superseded by a Senate appointed and paid by the government. 
Yet, in despite of this arbitrary act, he was received with unbounded 
adulation in the Italian towns. Their deputies, who waited on him at 
Milan, vied with each other in extravagant flattery : he was the Re- 
deemer of France, but the Creator of Italy they had supplicated Heaven 
for his victories and his safety they offered him the tribute of their 
fidelity and love forever. Napoleon received their advances graciously, 
reciprocated them by projecting costly public works, and answered them 
by heavy pecuniary exactions, and admonitions to the inhabitants to train 
up their youth to the profession of arms. 

These proceedings were followed by further encroachments on the 
dominions of Western Europe. The town and territory of Flushing, and 
the towns of Kehl, Cassel, and Wessel, on the right bank of the Rhine, 
were ceded to France. The Emperor also took possession of Tuscany 



and Rome, and disbanded the papal troops in the latter city. He then 
annexed Anoona, Urbcno, Macerata and Carnerino, to the kingdom of 
Italy. The importance of these acquisitions, however, consisted mainly 
in the principles on which they were made ; for France now, without dis- 
guise, assumed the right of annexing neutral and independent states to 
her dominions by no other authority than the decree of her own Legis- 



WHEN Napoleon returned from Italy to Paris, he fixed his attention 
on the Spanish Peninsula, and considered the means of bringing the re- 
sources of both its monarchies under the immediate control of France. 

The indignation of the Spanish government had already been roused 
to the highest pitch, at hearing of Napoleon's offer to partition their 
dominions ; and they saw, at the same time, that fidelity in alliance and 
long-continued national service, afforded them no guaranty for the con- 
tinued support of the French monarch : but that, when it suited his pur- 
pose, he did not scruple to purchase a temporary respite from the hostility 
of an enemy by the permanent spoliation of a friend. While this and 
various minor causes of offence were fast changing the course of Spanish 
policy, the Russian ambassador at Madrid, entered into a private treaty 
with Spain on the 28th of August, 1806, in which compact the court of 
Lisbon was also included, wherein it was agreed, that as soon as the 
French armies were far advanced on their road to Prussia, Spain should 
commence hostilities on the Pyrenees, and invite England to cooperate 
in the defence of the Peninsula. 

This secret negotiation was made known to Napoleon, by the activity 
of his ambassador at Madrid ; but he dissembled his resentment, and re- 
solved to strike a decisive blow in the north of Germany, before he car- 
ried out his ulterior designs on Spain and Portugal. The imprudent 
zeal of the Prince of Peace, gave publicity to the treaty before the proper 
season arrived ; for, in a proclamation issued at Madrid on the 5th of 
October, 1806, he invited " all Spaniards to unite themselves under the 
national standards ; the rich to make sacrifices for the charges of a war 
which will soon be called for by the common good ; the magistrates to 
do all in their power to rouse the public enthusiasm, in order to enable 
the nation to enter with glory into the lists which were preparing." This 
proclamation reached Napoleon on the field of Jena, the evening after 
the battle. He, however, contented himself for the moment, with in- 
structing his ambassador to demand an explanation of this extraordinary 
manifesto, and afterward professed to be satisfied by the assurance that 
the measure was intended to counteract ar anticipated descent of the 
Moors. The court of Lisbon, justly alarmed A* this premature disclosure 
of their secret designs, speedily disavowed all participation in the pro- 
ject ; and, to propitiate the Emperor, required the Earl St. Vincent to 
withdraw the British squadron from the Tagus. 

1807.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 229 

Those events, thus far trivial in themselves, made a great impression 
on Napoleon. He clearly saw the risk to which he would be exposed, 
if, while actively engaged in a German or Russian war, he were to be 
suddenly assailed by the forces of the Peninsula in his rear, where the 
French frontier was in a great measure defenceless, and whence the 
armies of England might find an easy entrance into the heart of his 
dominions. He felt, with Louis XIV., that it was necessary there should 
be no longer any Pyrenees ; and as the Revolution had changed the 
reigning family on the throne of France, he deemed it indispensable that 
a similar change should be effected in the Peninsular monarchies. He 
anticipated little opposition from the people either of Spain or Portugal ; 
considering them, like the Italians, indifferent to political change, pro- 
vided no diminution was made in their private enjoyments. 

The peace of Tilsit gave Napoleon an opportunity to carry out these 
intentions ; and his first measures were to summon the court of Lisbon 
to shut their ports against England, confiscate all English property within 
their dominions, and declare war against Great Britain. This was done 
on the 12th of August. At the same time, Junot repaired to Bayonne 
with an army of twenty-eight thousand men ; and Napoleon, under pre- 
tence of anticipating a refusal from the court of Lisbon, seized the Portu- 
guese ships in the French harbors. The government of Portugal was, 
however, wholly unable to resist Napoleon's demand ; they therefore 
closed their ports and declared war against England: but they refused 
to confiscate at once the property of the English merchants, and warned 
them to send off their effects and embark for their own country as speed- 
ily as possible. This modified compliance with his requisitions was far 
from satisfying Napoleon, and he ordered Junot to commence his march 
into the Portuguese territory. Accordingly, on the 19th of October, that 
marshal crossed the Bidassoa with his leading divisions; when the court 
of Lisbon declared that if the French troops entered Portugal, they would 
retire with their fleet to the Brazils. The threats and concessions of the 
court were, however, unavailing; for Napoleon had already resolved on 
the destruction of the House of Braganza, as well as the dethronement 
of the Spanish House of Bourbon ; and events soon followed, which 
lighted up the flames of the Peninsular War. 

. In conformity to his orders, Junot pressed on toward Lisbon, and in 
such haste, that the mere rapidity of his movements almost disorganized 
his army ; and his career through that devoted country was marked by 
pillage and rapine at every step. The elements of resistance were not 
wanting in the Portuguese capital. It contained three hundred thousand 
inhabitants, numerous well-constructed forts, and a garrison of fourteen 
thousand men. An English squadron lay in the Tagus for the British 
government, appreciating the circumstances under which Portugal had 
been forced to declare war against them, still continued their friendly 
offices, notwithstanding such declaration and Sir Sidney Smith, who had 
command of the British ships, held himself in readiness to unite with the 
garrison for the defence of the capital. But a little reflection showed 
the impolicy of contending with the French troops ; for, although a tem- 
porary success over Junot's disordered corps was of easy attainment, his 
defeat would have led to the invasion of an overwhelming force which 
could not be resisted ; and which, by its march and conquest, would spread 
desolation and ruin through the country, to a much greater extent than 


Junot's unopposed columns. The alternative of submission was there- 
fore adopted ; and the royal family, with their archives, treasure, plate 
and most valuable effects, embarked on board their fleet, consisting of 
eight sail of the line, three frigates, five sloops and a number of merchant 
vessels. Seldom has there been seen a more melancholy procession 
than that which preceded their embarkation, or one more calculated to 
impress the mind with the magnitude of the calamities brought on the 
nations of Europe by Napoleon's unbounded ambition. The insane 
queen was in the first carriage ; she had lived in seclusion for sixteen 
years, but a ray of light entered her mind at this extremity, and she un- 
derstood and approved the noble act of self-devotion : the widowed prin- 
cess and the Infanta Maria, with the princess of Brazil, followed ; and 
after them came the prince regent, pale, and weeping to leave thus, and 
apparently for ever, the land of his fathers. In the depth of the royal 
distress, the multitude forgot their own dangers ; and, thronging around 
the illustrious fugitives, wept as at the severance of the dearest family 
ties. It was some consolation to the crowd, as they watched the receding 
sails of the exiled fleet, to see the ships greeted with a royal salute while 
passing the British squadron ; a courtesy emblematic of the protection 
Great Britain afterward extended to her ancient ally in her darkest hour 
of peril. 

The fleet had hardly cleared the bar and disappeared from the shores 
of Europe, when Junot's advanced guajd, reduced to sixteen hundred 
men in the greatest destitution, reached the barriers of Lisbon. No 
resistance was offered ; but, on the contrary, as the French soldiers were 
literally dying from hunger and fatigue, the humane inhabitants received 
them with kindness, and by timely aid saved the lives of those, through 
whose instrumentality they were to be subjected to a foreign tyrant. 
Junot immediately took military possession of the country ; and as the 
detachments of his corps severally arrived, they were quartered in the 
capital and the fortresses in its vicinity, over all of which the tricolor 
flag now floated. 

As the French general, for a time, pursued the policy and enforced the 
laws of the supplanted government, the inhabitants began to hope that 
they would escape the ordinary calamities of a conquered nation ; but 
they were soon undeceived. In addition to the maintenance of the 
French troops, whose numbers daily increased, and the burden of whose 
support fell on the country as a matter of course, forced loans were ex- 
acted to a ruinous amount ; English property of every description was 
confiscated, together with the property of the royal family, and that of all 
who accompanied their flight; the ports were closed against British 
ships, and the trade of the capital sunk at once into insignificance. 
Shortly afterward, Junot dissolved the existing government, and took 
personal charge of the administration in the name of Napoleon. A sys- 
tem of private spoliation and robbery thenceforward ensued, in which all 
the invaders participated, from the general-in-chief down to the meanest 
soldier. These exactions and oppressions soon roused to the utmost the 
indignation of the inhabitants ; but as yet, they were too firmly held in 
the conqueror's grasp to be able to act against his authority. 

The royal family of Spain, at this period, was divided and distracted 
by political intrigue. The king, Charles IV., though not destitute of 
ability, was so indolent and so desirous of enjoying, on a throne, the Iran- 


quillity of private life, that, on ordinary occasions, he surrendered him- 
self to the direction of the queen and Godoy, known also as the Prince 
of Peace. The queen was a woman of spirit and capacity, but sensual, 
intriguing, and almost entirely governed by Don Manuel Godoy, a min- 
ister whom her criminal favor had raised from the humblest station to the 
chief directorship of the affairs of the kingdom. The Prince of Asturias, 
afterward Ferdinand VII., and now heir-apparent to the Spanish throne, 
was under the guidance of a swarm of flatterers, among whom the Canon 
Escoiquiz, an ecclesiastic of remarkable talents, was the most influential ; 
so that, in effect, two parties existed at the Spanish court ; one, under the 
control of Godoy, and the other, of Escoiquiz. These divisions were 
propitious to Napoleon's designs, and he prepared to take advantage of 
them by a secret correspondence with Godoy, and by sending Beauhar- 
nois, as ambassador to Madrid, to open private conferences with the 
prince's party. He at the same time entered into a treaty at Paris, with an 
ambassador of Charles IV., by which the partition of Portugal between 
France, Spain and some inferior powers, was stipulated; permission 
granted for the assembling of forty thousand French troops at Bayonne, 
who were to be marched across the Spanish territory to Portugal, in case 
of need ; and the integrity of his dominions guarantied to the Spanish 

This treaty, known as the treaty of Fontainebleau, was signed by Na- 
poleon on the 29th of October. On the 22nd of November, the army of 
forty thousand men at Bayonne was increased to sixty thousand ; and 
these troops, without any authority from the Spanish government, or any 
regard to the fact that their services were not required in Portugal, were 
marched across the Spanish frontier, and took the road, not to Lisbon, but 
to Madrid. This step was followed by a message from the Emperor to 
the Senate, requiring a levy of eighty thousand conscripts from the class 
e 1809 ; a demand for which there was no apparent reason, now that 
.he continental wars were terminated by the treaty of Tilsit. Soon after, 
the French troops, by a succession of fraud and stratagem equally inge- 
nious and dishonorable, made themselves masters of the four frontier 
fortresses of Spain ; namely, Pampeluna, Barcelona, San Fernando de 
Figueras, and St. Sebastians. These conquests gave them the command 
of the only passes practicable for an army from France into the Penin- 
sula ; and they were made not only during a period of profound peace, 
but within a few months of the time when a solemn treaty had been con- 
cluded between the two countries, by which France guarantied the integ- 
rity of the Spanish territory. Napoleon followed up his success with hip- 
accustomed vigor, by ordering fresh troops to the newly-acquired for 
tresses, accumulating magazines within their walls, and bestowing minute 
attention to the perfecting of their defences. The whole country, from 
the Bidassoa to the Duoro, was covered with armed men, the Spanish 
authorities in the towns were supplanted by Frenchmen, and before a 
single shot had been fired or an angry note interchanged between the 
cabinets of Paris and Madrid, the whole of Spain north of the Ebro was 
wrested from the crown of Castile. 

Napoleon soon made a formal demand for the annexation of the terri- 
tory thus acquired to the French Empire, offering in return to cede to 
Spain his portion of Portugal ; but this condition was illusory on its face, 
as, in of the treaty of Fontainebleau, he had already taken pos- 



session, in his own name, of the whole Portuguese dominion. Indeed, 
Napoleon's purpose to appropriate to himself the entire Peninsula became 
now so manifest, that the king resolved to imitate the example of the 
Prince Regent of Portugal : he made immediate though secret arrange- 
ments to proceed to Seville, and embark thence for America. At the 
same time Napoleon, maintaining to the last his detestable system of hy- 
pocrisy, sent the king a present of twelve beautiful horses, with a letter 
announcing his " intended visit to his friend and ally, the King of Spain, 
in order to cement their friendship by personal intercourse^ and arrange 
the affairs of the Peninsula without the restraint of diplomatic forms." 
But the court of Madrid had at last learned to estimate truly their rela- 
tions with France, and the friendship of Napoleon : they therefore hast- 
ened their preparations for departure. It was not long before rumors of 
the intended flight began to circulate ; and on the morning of March 
17th, tumultuous crowds assembled at Aranjuez to prevent the journey. 
When the royal carriages were drawn up in front of the palace, they took 
possession of them and cut the traces ; they then proceeded to the hotel 
of the Prince of Peace, whom they denounced as the author of their 
calamities, and ransacked every apartment in search of him. To ap- 
pease their wrath, the king issued a proclamation depriving Godoy of his 
offices, and banishing him from the court. This measure, however, did 
not satisfy them : they seized Don Diego Godoy, a relative of the Prince 
of Peace, and conducted him with much personal indignity to his barracks. 
At the same time, the royal guards, when sounded as to their willingness 
to resist the insurgents, should they attack the palace, answered, that " the 
Prince of Asturias could alone insure the public safety." That prince 
soon afterward appeared and dispersed the multitude with such ease, that 
it was impossible to doubt he had some agency in exciting the revolt. 
The night passed off tranquilly ; but on the following day. a fresh tumult 
arose in consequence of the discovery and seizure of Godoy by the people. 
The guards interfered to save him from immediate execution, and bore 
him to the nearest prison ; when the mob, prevented from wreaking their 
vengeance on the chief object of their hatred, separated into parties, tra- 
versed the streets in various directions, and sacked and pulled down the 
houses of Godoy's principal friends and dependents. 

At length Ferdinand, to whom all eyes were now turned as the only 
person capable of arresting the public disorders, at the earnest entreaty 
of the king and queen, repaired to the prison at the head of his guards, 
and prevailed on the mob to retire. " Are you yet king ?" inquired the 
Prince of Pea'ce, when Ferdinand presented himself. " Not yet," an- 
swered Ferdinand, " but soon shall be." In effect, Charles IV.. deserted 
by his court, overwhelmed by the opprobrium heaped on his minister, 
unable to trust his own guards, and in hourly apprehension that not only 
Godoy, but also his queen and himself might be murdered, deemed a 
resignation of the crown the only means of securing personal safety to 
any of the three : in the evening, therefore, of March 19th, he issued a 
proclamation, relinquishing the throne in favor of the Prince of Asturias. 

The prince was at once proclaimed king, under the title of Ferdinand 
VII. ; an event which, joined to the fall of Godoy, caused a universal 
rejoicing. The surrender of the frontier fortresses*, the occupation of the 
northern provinces by a hundred thousand French troops, the approach 
of Napoleon's Imperial Guard these were forgotten by the people in 

1808.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 233 

their triumph over the traitors who had betrayed the nation. The houses 
in Madrid were decorated during the day with flowers and green boughs, 
and at night a spontaneous illumination burst forth in every part of the 

While the Spaniards were exulting at the accession of a new monarch 
to the throne, Murat, at the head of the French troops, rapidly approached 
Madrid. On the 15th of March, he set out from Burgos, with the corps of 
Moncey, the Imperial Guard, and the artillery, taking the road to Somo- 
Sierra. On the same day, Dupont, with two divisions of his corps and the 
cavalry, marched for the Guadarama pass, while his third division remained 
at Valladolid to observe the Spanish troops in Galicia. As soon as these 
forces evacuated Burgos, their place was supplied by the army of reserve 
under Bessieres. The whote "body moved on by brigades, taking with 
them provisions for fifteen days and fifty rounds of ball-cartridge for each 
man : they bivouacked at night with patrols set, and all the other precau- 
tions usual in an enemy's territory. They proclaimed, that they were 
bound for the camp at St. Roque to act against the English ; but they 
belied their pacific declarations by arresting the mails and all Spanish 
soldiers whom they met on the road, in order to prevent any intelligence 
of their approach from preceding them. On the 23rd of March, Murat 
reached Madrid with the cavalry and Imperial Guard, and established 
his quarters at Godoy's hotel. This formidable apparition excited much 
less notice than it would otherwise have done, in consequence of every 
one's being engaged in preparing for the triumphal entry of the new king, 
appointed for the following day. Ferdinand came, in accordance with 
this arrangement, accompanied by two hundred thousand citizens of all 
ranks, in carriages, on horseback and on foot ; and Murat, who saw the 
enthusiasm with which the monarch was received, wrote the particulars 
to Napoleon, and commented on the probable effect of placing so popular 
a prince permanently at the head of affairs in Spain. 

Ferdinand, aware of the importance of being recognized by the French 
Emperor, was now assiduous in attempts to cultivate a good understanding 
with Murat ; but that officer, well knowing Napoleon's designs on the 
Spanish throne, steadily repelled his advances. On the other hand, 
Charles IV. and his queen daily solicited Murat to take Godoy under his 
protection, while the ex-king averred that he had abdicated under com- 
pulsion and desired to recall his act. It was easy for Murat, while thus 
holding the rival parties in expectation of his support and in dread of his 
displeasure, to take military possession of the capital ; which he did ac- 
cordingly, and nominated General Grouchy governor of Madrid. En- 
couraged by this success, Murat demanded supplies for the food, clothing 
and pay of his troops, which were promptly granted. He then hinted 
that the French Emperor would be pleased to receive a visit, on the 
frontier of the kingdom, from Don Carlos, the king's brother ; and as this 
courtesy was readily conceded, Beauharnois ventured to suggest that the 
amicable relations between the two potentates would be specially pro- 
moted, if Ferdinand would himself proceed as far as Burgos to receive 
his illustrious guest. But the suspicions of Ferdinand's advisers were 
aroused by this proposal ; and the inhabitants, displeased at the coolness 
manifested toward their sovereign by the French authorities, began to 
consider their means of expelling the invaders from the country. 

On the 26th of March, the French Emperor, who was still at Paris 


received intelligence of the tumult at Aranjuez. He immediately sent 
a letter to his brother Louis, offering him the crown of Spain; hut Louis, 
who, on the throne of Holland, had sufficiently experienced the chains 
of servitude and the responsibilities of command, had the good sense to 
decline its acceptance. Napoleon at the same time held a conference 
at St Cloud, with Isquierdo, the Spanish minister, on the state of public 
opinion in the Peninsula, and the feelings with which the people of 
" Spain would regard a prince of his family, or even himself, for their 
sovereign. Isquierdo replied, "The Spaniards would accept your ma- 
jesty for their king with pleasure, and even with enthusiasm ; but only 
in the event of your having previously renounced the crown of France." 
Napoleon was much struck with this answer, and after some deliberation 
he resolved to" get both Charles and Ferdinand into his power. For this 
purpose, he sent to Madrid the most unprincipled and adroit of his min- 
ions, Savary ; charging him to say and promise in his name, anything and 
everything which could induce the reigning monarch to undertake the 
journey to Burgos. 

When Savary arrived at Madrid, he thus addressed Ferdinand: "I 
have come at the particular desire of the Emperor, solely to offer his 
compliments to your majesty, and to know if your sentiments toward 
France are similar to those of your father. If they are, the Emperor 
will shut his eyes to rill that is past; he will not intermeddle in the 
slightest degree with the internal affairs of the kingdom, and he will in- 
stantly recognize you as King of Spain and the Indies." This gratifying 
assurance was accompanied by so many flattering expressions and so 
much apparent cordiality, that it entirely deceived Ferdinand and his 
counsellors ; and Savary so pressed his entreaties that the king would go 
at least as far as Burgos to meet the Emperor, who was already near 
Bayonne on his road to Madrid, that all objections were overcome, and 
Ferdinand, accompanied by the French envoy, set forth on his journey 
on the 10th of April. 

The king, in passing through the northern provinces, was received 
with the strongest testimonials of devotion ; yet even the simple inhab- 
itants of Castile, who were untrammelled by delusions of court intrigue, 
beheld with undisguised anxiety the progress of their sovereign toward 
the French frontier. When the cavalcade arrived at Burgos, the king's 
counsellors were greatly disturbed and alarmed to find that Napoleon 
was not there, and that no advices had been received of his approach: 
they therefore insisted on his majesty's discontinuing his journey. But 
Savary interfered, protesting loudly against a step which, he alleged, 
would evince an undue and ungenerous want of confidence in the Em- 
peror, and might lead to serious consequences by disturbing the present 
good understanding between the two monarchs. " I will let you cut off 
my head," said he, " if, within a quarter of an hour after your majesty's 
arrival at Bayonne, the Emperor does not recognize you as King of 
Spain and the Indies." These words were decisive with the king, and 
he recommenced his journey, although the people assembled in crowds 
to dissuade him from so doing, and, at Vittoria, even threatened to pre- 
vent his advance by force. At that place, too, a faithful counsellor fore- 
told in detail the dangers that awaited his interview with the French 
Emperor, and suggested a plan for his escape ; but Savary's artifice and 
falsehoods overpowered every other consideration, and Ferdinand con- 

1808.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 235 

tinued his route to Bayonne, whe.e he committed himself to the honor of 

Before the king left Madrid, he intrusted the government to a regency, 
of which the Infant Don Antonio was the nominal head; but Murat was 
the real centre of authority, the presence of thirty thousand French 
troops giving him an influence that could not be resisted. Murat's first 
step after the king's departure, was an order for the delivery into his 
hands of the Prince of Peace, whom he dispatched to Bayonne, under a 
strong guard. He next conferred with the old king and queen ; and on 
their reiterating to him that the late abdication was a forced procedure, 
he advised the ex-sovereign to repair with his queen to Bayonne, and lay 
their grievances at the feet of Napoleon: which he accordingly did. 

As the French Emperor had now the royal family of Spain in his 
power, he gave Murat minute instructions for carefully and gradually 
undermining their influence with the inhabitants, in order to pave the 
way for a peaceable usurpation of the throne, with its titles and immu- 
nities. But it soon appeared that, capable as Murat had hitherto proved 
himself, this task was beyond his powers of dissimulation and intrigue: 
he was too much accustomed to the despotic rule of military force, to 
assume at once, and in circumstances singularly difficult, the foresight 
and circumspection of an experienced diplomatist. After it was known 
that both Ferdinand and his father had crossed the frontier, and placed 
themselves in the Emperor's power, the previous discontents in the cap- 
ital rapidly increased; numberless rencontres ensued between the inhab- 
itants and the troops, and Murat was irritated to declare that he would 
prevent all assemblages for any purpose in the streets, and punish with 
military severity any one who opposed his soldiers in the discharge of 
their duty. Both parties now became exasperated in the highest degree, 
and during this state of ebullition, matters were brought to a crisis by a 
demand from Murat that the remainder of the royal family, consisting of 
the queen of Etruria and the Infants Don Francisco and Don Antonio, 
should immediately set out for Bayonne. The regency were intimidated 
into compliance with this order, but the people interfered to prevent its 
execution. While the carriages were in waiting at the palace, an aid- 
de-camp of Murat pushed his way through the crowd to hasten their 
departure, when the rumor was circulated that this officer was about to 
use personal violence toward the young prince. The aid-de-camp was 
immediately assailed, and would probably have been killed on the spot, 
but for the arrival of a company of French soldiers, who rescued and 
bore him to head-quarters. 

Murat, enraged at this insult to his authority, sent a detachment of 
troops with two pieces of cannon, and by several discharges of grape- 
shot on the unarmed multitude around the palace, soon restored order. 
But the sound of these cannon echoed from one end of the Peninsula to 
the other, and eventually shook the Empire of Napoleon to its foundation. 
The whole city instantly flew to arms. All considerations of conse- 
quences were forgotten in the intense fury of the moment ; knives, dag- 
gers, and bayonets, were seized wherever they could be found; the 
gunsmiths' shops were ransacked for fire arms; and many straggling 
detachments of French soldiers were surrounded and put to death. Such 
a tumultuary effort, however, could not long prevail against the dis- 
cipline and skill of regular troops, who, being ordered to charge through 


the streets in great numbers, at length dispersed the populace : the loss 
on each side was about three hundred men. 

Hitherto, neither party in this affair deserved much blame ; the tumult, 
however deplorable in its consequences, was the effect of an unpremed- 
itated collision; and the blood that had been shed was the result of pas- 
sion and excitement on the part of the belligerents, for which, strictly 
speaking, Napoleon, by his infamous invasion of a friendly country, was 
personally and solely responsible. But after the fighting had ceased and 
the danger was over, Murat, instead of humanely making allowances for 
the circumstances of exasperation in which the Spaniards were placed, 
and endeavoring to improve the occurrence to his own advantage by 
conciliatory measures, immediately se : zed a large number of Spanish 
citizens, as they were, in various quarters of the town, walking the 
streets or pursuing their avocations, hurried them before a military tri- 
bunal, and condemned them to be shot. Preparations were made to 
carry this sentence into execution ; the mournful intelligence flew 
through Madrid ; and all who missed relations or friends, became over- 
whelmed with the agonizing fear that they were among these victims of 
French barbarity. While the people remained in this state of excite- 
ment, and the approach of night, augmented the general consternation, 
the firing began; the regular discharges of heavy platoons at the Retiro, 
in the Prado, the Puerto del Sol, and the church of Senora de la Soledad, 
then told too plainly that the work of death was in progress. The dis- 
mal sounds froze every heart with terror; all that had been suffered 
during the heat of the preceding conflict in the streets, seemed as nothing 
compared to the horrors of that cold-blooded execution. Nor did the 
general grief abate, when the particulars of the massacre became known. 
Numbers were put to death, who had no concern whatever in the tumult; 
those who suffered were denied the last consolations of religion, and were 
slain in pairs, being tied together two and two, and dispatched by re- 
peated discharges of musketry. 

This atrocious massacre of the citizens of an independent sovereignty 
for no greater crime, at most, than the defence of their lawful rights 
against the oppression of a foreign tyrant, was equally impolitic and out- 
rageous; and the indignation which it excited throughout Spain is inde- 
scribable. With a rapidity that could not have been anticipated in a 
country where but little internal communication existed, the intelligence 
spread from city to city, from province to province, and awakened that 
feeling of national resentment which, when properly directed, is the cer- 
tain forerunner of great achievements. Actuated by a spirit unknown 
in Europe since the first revolutionary movements in France, the people 
in every province, without any previous concert, or any direction from 
the existing authorities, began to assemble and devise plans for the de- 
fence of the kingdom. Far from being intimidated by the enemy's pos- 
session of their capital and principal fortresses, they were the more 
roused to exertion by these untoward disadvantages. Nor was the 
movement one of faction or party ; it animated men of all ranks, classes 
and professions; it was universal, unpremeditated, simultaneous; and in 
an inconceivably short time, Napoleon found himself involved in a bloody 
strife with the whole Spanish nation. 

The Princes Don Francisco and Don Antonio, intimidated by the vio- 
lence of Murat, and unable to resist his authority, set out for Bayonne on 

1808.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 237 

the day after the tumult at Madrid, leaving the capital, without any 
organized native government, entirely in the hands of the French gen- 
erals. But, in the meantime, matters had reached a crisis between Na- 
poleon and the royal family. When Ferdinand met the French Emperor 
at Bayonne, he was received with marked kindness and courtesy, and in- 
vited to dine at the Imperial head-quarters. After the repast, Ferdinand 
returned to his hotel, leaving Escoiquiz to confer with Napoleon : but he 
had hardly reached his lodgings, when Savary followed him to announce 
the Emperor's determination, that he must instantly resign his throne of 
both Spain and the Indies in favor of a prince of the Bonaparte dynasty : 
and hopes were held out that, should he do this amicably, he might obtain 
the Grand-duchy of Tuscany as an equivalent. Ferdinand, though 
astounded at this tyrannical perfidy, made no decisive reply at the mo- 
ment. He, however, conferred with his counsellors, and eventually re- 
fused to accede to the proposal, accompanying -his refusal with a demand 
for his passports. 

Napoleon was greatly perplexed at the firmness of Ferdinand. It did 
not, indeed, cause him to hesitate a moment in his design of dethroning 
the Bourbons, but he preferred to do this under the cover of legal forms, 
rather than by open violence. He therefore declined for the present to 
grant passports to Ferdinand, and referred to Charles IV., hoping to find 
in the father a more pliant instrument than the son. In this expectation 
he was not disappointed. After the Prince of Peace, the queen and the 
old king had been sufficiently wrought upon by flattery and threats, Fer- 
dinand was summoned to an interview with them, when Charles com- 
manded him to execute a simple and unqualified resignation of the crown, 
signed by himself and his brothers. He was given to understand that, in 
case of refusal, he and his counsellors would be prosecuted as traitors. 
Nevertheless, Ferdinand steadily adhered to his determination, and defi- 
nitely refused to resign his claims to the crown, except in a manner so 
qualified as to defeat the purposes of the Emperor. But the latter easily 
prevailed on Charles to execute a formal abdication in his favor, on con- 
dition of maintaining the Catholic religion, of preserving entire the Spanish 
dominions, and of granting pensions for life to the several members of the 
royal family. 

On the day that this convention was signed, a secret deputation reached 
Ferdinand from the |*emaining members of the regency at Madrid, inqui- 
ring whether they might remove their place of assembly, as they were, in 
the capital, subject to the control of the French army; whether they 
should declare war against France, and endeavor to resist the further en- 
trance of the French troops into the Peninsula; and whether, in the event 
of his (Ferdinand's) being unable to return, they should assemble the 
Cortes. Ferdinand answered, that as he was deprived of his liberty, he 
could lake no steps to save either himself or the monarchy ; that he 
.here fore authorized the junta of the government to add new members to 
their department, to remove whomsoever they pleased, and to exercis3 all 
the functions of sovereignty ; that they were to oppose the entrance of 
fresh troops, and commence hostilities as soon as he should be removed to 
France ; and, finally, that the Cortes must be convoked to take measures 
for the defence of the kingdom, and for such ulterior objects as might re- 
quire their attention. The decrees necessary to carry these instructions 
into etfect, were taken to Madrid by an officer destined to future celobrity, 
Don Joseph Palafox. 


Napoleon was soon after relieved from the embarrassment which Fer- 
dinand's resolute opposition occasioned, by intelligence of the tumult at 
Madrid. He al once changed his ground, denounced the king for the con- 
duct of his people, and ended by a significant intimation that his obstinacy 
would endanger his own life and that of his brothers. As nothing, now, 
could bo gained by resistance, Ferdinand resolved to submit. On the 
lOih A May, he signed a treaty assenting to his father's resignation of the 
Spanish crown in favor of Napoleon, and receiving in return the title of 
Most Serene Highness, with the investiture of the palace, park and farms 
of Navarre, and an annuity of six hundred thousand francs from the 
French treasury. The same rank, with an annuity of four hundred thou- 
sand francs, was conferred on the Infants Don Carlos and Antonio. When 
this treaty was completed, the Emperor removed Ferdinand and his 
brothers to Bordeaux, wjiere the two princes signed a renunciation of their 
rights to the throne, and Ferdinand was compelled to affix his name to a 
proclamation, counselling submission to the Spanish people. The three 
royal captives were afterward removed to Valencay, and they remained 
there during the war. 

Having succeeded in dispossessing the Bourbon family, and obtaining a 
semblance of legal title to the Spanish throne, Napoleon resolved to cre- 
ate his brother Joseph king of Spain, and confer the crown of Naples, 
which Joseph then held, upon Murat. On the 6th of June, Joseph was 
accordingly proclaimed King of Spain and the Indies at Bayonne, and a 
proclamation, issued by Napoleon, convoked an assembly of one hundred 
and fifty notables, to meet at that city on the 15th of the same month, for 
regulating the affairs of the kingdom. Of the notables thus summoned, 
ninety-two, comprising some of the principal nobles and prominent men 
in Spain, met at Bayonne in conformity to the proclamation, and formally 
accepted the Constitution prepared for them by Napoleon. 

This instrument provided, that the crown should be vested in Joseph 
Bonaparte and his heirs-male; whom failing, the Emperor and his heirs- 
male ; and in default of both, to the other brothers of the Imperial family 
in their order of seniority, but on condition that the crown should not be 
united with any other crown in the person of one sovereign. A Legisla- 
ture was created, to consist of eighty members, nominated by the king. 
A Cortes was also decreed, to consist of a hundred and seventy-two mem- 
bers, thus composed: twenty-five archbishops and bishops and twenty -five 
grandees, on the first bench ; sixty-two deputies of the provinces of Spain 
and the Indies and thirty from the principal towns, on the second; and 
fifteen from the merchants and manufacturers and fifteen from the depart- 
ments of arts and sciences, on the third. The first fifty of these, comprising 
the peers, were appointed by the king but could not be displaced by him; 
the second class of ninety-two was elected by the provinces and munici- 
palities ; and the third was appointed by the king from lists presented to 
him by the tribunals of commerce and the universities. The delibera. 
tions of the Cortes were to be private, and the publication of any of its 
proceedings was denounced under the penalties of high treason. Its 
duties were to arrange the national finances and expenditures for three 
years at one sitting. The colonies were to have a deputation of twenty- 
two persons constantly at the seat of government to superintend their in- 
terests ; all exclusive exemptions from taxes were abolished ; entails 
permitted only to the amount of twenty thousand piastres, and with the 


consent of the king; an alliance offensive and defensive was concluded 
with France, and a promise r^'ven for the establishment of the liberty of 
the press within two years after the acceptance of the new Constitution. 
On the 9th of July, King Joseph set out for the capital of his dominions, 
with a splendid cortege and amid the roar of artillery. Napoleon returned 
to St. Cloud, having refused to visit Ferdinand on his route, although per- 
sonally requested to do so by the dethroned sovereign. Charles IV., after 
testifying his entire satisfaction at the Emperor's proceedings, solicited 
permission to remove to Marseilles, where, in ease and obscurity, he lin- 
ger^d out the remainder of his inglorious life. 

The ministry appointed by Joseph before his departure from Bayonne, 
were taken chiefly from the counsellors of Ferdinand ; and this selection, 
together with their ready acceptance of their new dignities, throws a deep 
shade of doubt over the fidelity with which they had served the Prince of 
Asturias during his brief possession of the Spanish throne. Don Luis de 
Urquijo, was made Secretary of State ; Don Pedro Cevallos, Minister of 
Foreign Affairs ; Don Sebastian do Pinnela, Minister of Justice : Don (ion- 
zalo O'Farrel, Minister at War; and Mazaredo, Minister of th^ Marine. 
Even Escoiquiz wrote to Joseph, protesting his devotion, and declaring 
that he and the rest of Ferdinand's household "were willing blindly to 
obey his will to the most minute particular." The Duke del Infantado 
and the Prince of Castel-Franco were appointed, severally, to the com- 
mand of the Spanish and Walloon guards. Thus, the new king entered 
Madrid, where he arrived on the 20th of July, surrounded by the highest 
grandees and most illustrious titles of Spain. Nevertheless, his reception 
at the capital was gloomy in the extreme. The orders issued for the de- 
coration of the houses, were disregarded ; a crowd assembled to see the 
cortege, but no shouts welcomed its approach ; the bells of the churches 
rang a dismal peal, and every countenance was full of sorrow. 

THE Spanish Peninsula, in which a bloody war was now commencing, 
and where the armies of France and England found, at last, a perma- 
nent theatre of conflict, differs in many important particulars from every 
other country on the Continent. Physically considered, it belongs as 
much to Africa as to Europe : the same burning sun parches the moun- 
tains and dries up the valleys of both. Vegetation, in general, spreads 
only where irrigation can be obtained ; and with that powerful auxiliary, 
the steepest acclivities of Catalonia and Arragon are clothed in luxuriant 
green ; while, without it, vast districts in Leon and the Castiles are 
almost destitute of cultivation and inhabitants. The desert tracts of 
Spain are so extensive that the country, viewed from the high ridges 
which intersect the interior 'provinces, exhibits only a confused group of 
barren elevated plains and lofty naked peaks, relieved by a few glit- 
tering streams, having on their margins crops, flocks, and the traces 





of habitable dwellings. The whole country may be considered as a 
vast mountainous promontory, that stretches from the Pyrenees, south- 
wardly, between the Atlantic and the Mediterranean sea. On the bor- 
ders of the ridge, to the east and west, are plains of admirable fertility; 
while the centre consists of an assemblage of heights, in the midst 
of which lies Madrid, in an upland basin, eighteen hundred feet above 
the level of the sea. This great central region is intersected by three 
causeways leading, severally, from Madrid to Bayonne, by the Somo- 
Sierra pass, to Valencia, and to Barcelona : in every other quarter, the 
roads are little better than mountain paths communicating with walled 
towns, built on the summits of hills, and surrounded by olive forests, but 
having little intercourse with each other or with the rest of Europe. 
There are but two great and rich alluvial plains in Spain ; in one, Valen- 
cia, amid luxuriant harvests and the richest gifts of nature, the castanets 
and evening dance represent the careless gayety of the tropical regions ; 
and in the second, Andalusia, abounding in myrtle thickets and orange 
groves, the indolent habits, fiery character and impetuous disposition of the 
inhabitants, attest the undecaying influence of Moorish blood and Arabian 

The aggregate of forces destined to operate in this romantic field was 
immense. Napoleon had no less than six hundred thousand disposable 
French troops under his command, besides a hundred and fifty thousand 
drawn from the Confederation of the Rhine, Italy, Naples, Holland and 
the Grand Duchy of Warsaw. Nor did the numerical strength of this 
host exceed its efficiency. The ranks of the French army were, to a 
great extent, filled with veterans who had seen fifteen years of active 
service; and who, by their experience, their skill, and their confidence 
arising from a hundred former victories, might be considered as nearly 
invincible as any soldiers who ever took the field. The disposable Brit- 
ish army in the spring of 1808, exclusive of the militia, the volunteers, 
and the regular troops occupied in defence of the various colonies of the 
Empire, amounted to a hundred thousand men, in the highest state of dis- 
cipline, and equipment. The military establishment of Spain, when the 
contest commenced, was far from being considerable, as the entire force 
that could be brought into action did not exceed seventy thousand men, 
who were stationed at remote points, and whose qualities as soldiers were 
far inferior to those of the British and French troops. 

The first effervescence of public indignation caused by 'the massacres 
at Madrid, was followed by a series of revolts in the principal towns 
of Spain, which were marked by frightful atrocities : natives of France, 
of whatever occupation, were indiscriminately put to death, and the evi- 
dences furnished by these bloody deeds of the ruthless character of Cas- 
tilian revenge, too truly symbolized the ferocious warfare that was about 
to desolate the country. Nor were the early movements of the Spaniards 
confined to isolated revolts. In ihe beginning of June, the Spanish troops 
at Cadiz, under General Morla, made preparations to capture the French 
fleet of five ships of the line and one frigate, then lying in the harbor 
of that port. Batteries were constructed to command the whole bay; 
and, on the 9th of June, they opened their fire with decisive effect. 
The French admiral, finding escape and resistance equally impossible, 
entered into negotiations with Morla, and, on the 14th of June, he uncon- 
ditionally surrendered the whole flest to the Spanish commander. These 

1808.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 241 

successes, combined with the universal spirit of resistance throughout the 
kingdom, led to a speedy assemblage of volunteer forces, which soon 
amounted, in the several provinces, to a hundred and fifty thousand men, 
all armed, to a certain extent disciplined, and with an invincible personal 
courage, ready to cooperate with and support the movements of the regu- 
lar army. 

Marshal Bessieres and General Frere made the first demonstration on 
the part of the French troops in Old Castile and Leon, where, by a suc- 
cession of combats with the ill-organized forces of Spain, they succeeded, 
by the middle of June, in disarming all opposition to the new government 
in those provinces. In Aragon, however, although that province was 
almost destitute of regular troops, the French arms met with more seri- 
ous resistance. By great exertions, Palafox and the junta of Saragossa 
had succeeded in arming and partially disciplining ten thousand volun- 
teer infantry, who were marched out of that city, under Marquis Lazan, 
and took post behind the Huecha, to oppose the advance of Lefebvre. 
Two actions ensued, in both of which the discipline of the French troops 
prevailed, and the Spaniards were driven back to Saragossa, where Pala- 
fox reorganized his army, and prepared for an obstinate defence. 

Saragossa is situated on the right bank of the Ebro, in the midst of a 
fertile plain, abounding in olive-groves, vineyards, gardens, and all the 
evidences of long-continued civilization. It contained, at that period, 
fifty-five thousand inhabitants. The immediate vicinity of the town is 
flat, and in some places marshy. To the south, distant a quarter of a 
league, rises Mount Torrero, on the side of which runs the canal of Ara- 
gon a noble work, commenced by Charles V., forming a water commu- 
nication, without a lock, from Tudela to Saragossa. This hill commands 
the plain on the left bank of the Ebro, and overlooks the town. Several 
warehouses and other buildings, constructed for the commerce of the 
canal, were now intrenched and occupied by twelve hundred Spanish 
soldiers. The city itself, surrounded by a low brick wall, not more than 
twelve feet high and three feet thick, interrupted in many places by 
houses and convents which were built in its line, and pierced by eight 
gates, with no outworks, could scarcely be called fortified. But few 
guns fit for service were on the ramparts; the houses were strongly built 
of stone or brick, for the most part two stories high, and the massy piles 
of the convents, rising in many quarters like castles, offered strong posi- 
tions, when the walls of the town should be forced, for a desperate and 
inflamed population. Few generals in regular service would have thought 
of making a stand in such a city : but Florus has recorded that Numantia 
had neither walls nor towers, when it resisted so long and heroically 
the Roman legions ; and Colmenar, with a prophetic spirit, said early 
in the eighteenth century, " Saragossa is without defences, but the valor 
of its inhabitants supplies the want of ramparts." 

The resolution to defend Saragossa cannot with justice be ascribed to 
any single individual ; the glory belongs to the whole population, all of 
whom, in the first movements of confusion and excitement, had a share in 
the bold determination. When Palafox withdrew his defeated forces into 
the town, he either despaired of being able to defend it, or deemed it neces- 
sary to collect reinforcements from other quarters for a prolonged resist- 
ance ; and retired with a small body of troops to the northern bank of the 
river, leaving the armed population nearly unsupported *o sustain the con- 

242 H I S T O R Y O F E U .; O P E . [CHAP. XXIX, 

test. Lefebvre, taking advantage of the Spanish commander's absence, 
commenced an assault ; but the people intrepidly stood on their defence, 
and, after a sharp contest, drove him back from the walls. Animated by 
this success, the inhabitants resolved to strengthen the fortifications and 
maintain the place. Men, women and children took part in the laborious 
duty ; cannon were dragged to the gates, loopholes struck out in the 
walls, fascines and gabions constructed with astonishing celerity, and in 
twenty-four hours the city was secure from a coup-de-main. 

Lefebvre's loss in this affair was very severe, and he became convinced 
that regular approaches were indispensable to the reduction of the town. 
He therefore withdrew from the gates, and dispatched orders for heavy 
artillery to Pampeluna and Bayonne. Meantime, Palafox returned to 
the relief of Saragossa with seven thousand infantry, a hundred horse, 
and four pieces of cannon ; but having encamped without the walls for 
the night, he was attacked by Lefebvre under cover of the darkness, and 
completely routed. He, however, made good his own entry into the 
city ; and as the battering train of the besiegers soon arrived, Saragossa 
was regularly and completely invested. 

A contest now ensued which has few parallels in history. The num. 
bers, resources and skill of the French troops rendered the exterior de- 
fences unavailing, and the slender walls being soon laid in ruins, the 
town was summoned to surrender. Palafox rejected the proposal, and 
the besiegers advanced to the assault. The combat at the breaches was 
long and bloody; but at length the French penetrated into the streets, 
and supposed themselves in possession of Saragossa. Here, however, a 
desperate resistance awaited them. Every roof and window blazed with 
an incessant fire of musketry, which they could not return with effect, 
and they fell by hundreds before its withering storm. Powder maga- 
zines in different quarters blew up, the houses at various points took fire, 
but the battle still raged, day and night, from street to street, from door 
to door ; the roar of artillery and musketry, the explosion of bombs, the 
glare of conflagration and the cries of combatants continued, without 
intermission, for ten entire days, at the end of which time, August 14th, 
Lefebvre retreated with immense loss, having been unable to make a 
permanent lodgment in any quarter of the town. 

A similar reverse awaited the French troops at Valencia, a town as 
imperfectly fortified and apparently as incapable of defence as Saragossa. 
Moncey, in the expectation of an easy victory, assaulted the place at the 
head of eight thousand men; but the unconquerable heroism of the in- 
habitants was an. overmatch for his utmost efforts, and he was compelled 
to retreat with a loss of two thousand of his best troops. 

These brilliant achievements excited the utmost enthusiasm throughout 
all Spain, and recruits flocked to the national standards, in the confident 
hope of sweeping the invaders across their own frontier. Blake and 
Cuesta, two Spanish generals of some note, resolved to unite their forces 
and give battle to Bessieres on the plains of Leon. They advanced ac- 
cordingly to Rio Seco, with twenty-five thousand men and thirty pieces 
of cannon. Bessieres's force did not exceed fifteen thousand, but the 
quality of his troops more than atoned for their inferiority of numbers. 
Cuesta, who as senior officer took the chief command, made the worst 
possible disposition for the battle. He posted Blake, with ten thousand 
of his least experienced soldiers, on a rugged plateau nearest the en^my; 

180d.] HISTORY OF EUROPF. 243 

while he tool; command in person of the remaining fifteen thousand, who 
were nearly all regular troops, a mile and a half in the rear. Bessicres 
readily took advantage of this insane division -of the Spanish forces. 
Making a circuit with a considerable part of his army, he attacked Blake 
simultaneously in front, flank and rear, and at the first charge dispersed 
the whole division in hopeless disorder across the field. Cuesta advanced 
to the relief of his colleague, and at first made some impression on the 
French columns as they were confusedly pressing on Blake's retreat; 
but Bessieres soon rallied his men, and, by an impetuous and concentrated 
attack, broke and totally routed the second Spanish division. Cuesta's 
loss in this action was three thousand men killed and wounded, two 
thousand prisoners, and eighteen pieces of cannon: the loss of the French 
did not exceed twelve hundred men. In the course of the pursuit, the 
town of Rio Seco was taken, and given up to the sack and pillage of the 
soldiery. The result of this action destroyed the newly-acquired con- 
fidence of the Spaniards, and, in a proportionate degree, elevated the 
hopes of Napoleon who, when he received the intelligence, exultingly 
remarked, "Bessieres has placed Joseph on the throne of Spain ;" and he 
congratulated himself with the belief that the war was at an end. But 
he never formed a more erroneous opinion. 

Soon after the insurrections broke out, Dupont, with a considerable 
force, marched into Andalusia ; where, having gained several minor ad- 
vantages, he took possession of the city of Cordova, and delivered it to 
the pillage of his troops, in the same manner as if it had been carried by 
assault. A scene of indescribable horror ensued. Armed and unarmed 
men were slaughtered, women ravished, and the churches plundered: 
even the venerable cathedral, which had survived the devastation of the 
first Christian conquest, six hundred years before, was stripped of its 
ornaments, and polluted by the vilest debauchery. Money and articles 
of plate, to an enormous amount, were seized both for public purposes 
and for the private use of the troops ; and it is important to observe, that 
these extremities of ou % ?e were committed against the inhabitants of a 
town who had offered Ole or no resistance to the invaders, who were 
not formally summoned to surrender, and who therefore, by all rules of 
civilized warfare, were entitled to the most liberal terms of capitulation. 

Dupont remained several days at Cordova; but at length becoming 
alarmed at the insurrectionary movements of the inhabitants in the ad- 
joining country, and at the assembling of Spanish troops under Castanos 
and Reding, which threatened to cut off his communications with Madrid, 
he abandoned his original intention of a farther advance into Andalusia, 
and resolved to retreat upon the capital. He immediately organized his 
forces for this purpose and set forth, taking, in addition to the ordinary 
baggage of his army, a train of wagons loaded with the ill-gotten plunder 
of Cordova. His march was for a time uninterrupted, but he soon en- 
countered numerous detached parties at the fords and defiles of his route, 
from whom he met \\ ith serious opposition and loss ; and when he reached 
Andujar, he found himself completely enveloped by the enemy. As his 
army was twenty thousand strong, he might, by a vigorous effort, have 
cut his way through his antagonist's lines ; but, instead of so doing, he 
divided his troops, sent Vedel with a strong detachment toward Carolina, 
and himself retreated upon Baylen. He was here attacked by the Span- 
iards, and after a desperate but ineffectual resistance, solicited a suspen- 



sion of arms. Vedel, who had been ordered back to Dupont's assistance 
at the commencement of the action, arrived only in time to share its dis- 
asters; and, after a brief negotiation, the French general, finding it 
impossible to escape the catastrophe, surrendered his entire force to 
Castanos on condition of being sent back by sea to France. The pris- 
oners, with the garrisons of a number of detached posts on their line of 
communication with Madrid, who also surrendered, amounted to twenty- 
one thousand men. Two thousand had fallen in the battle, one thousand 
were killed in the retreat preceding it, and thus twenty-four thousand 
effective troops were for the time lost to France, including all their arms 
and artillery. 

The account of this defeat reached Napoleon at Bordeaux, and he was 
so excited by the news that his attendant ministers were greatly alarmed. 
"Is your majesty ill?" said Maret. "No." "Has Austria declared 
war ?" " Would to God that were all !" " What, then, has happened ?" 
The Emperor recounted the details of the battle, and added, "That an 
army should be beaten, is nothing; it is the daily fate of war, and is 
easily repaired : but that an army should submit to a dishonorable capit- 
ulation, is a stain on the glory of our arms that can never be effaced. 
Wounds inflicted on honor are incurable. The moral effect of this catas- 
trophe, too, will be terrible. What! he has had the infamy to give up 
our soldiers' haversacks to be searched like those of robbers ! Could I 
ever have expected that of General Dupont, a man whom I loved and 
was rearing up to become a marshal ? He says, he had no other way to 
prevent the destruction of the army and save the lives of the soldiers: 
but it were far better they had all perished, than suffer this disgrace." 

If, however, the capitulation of Baylen was dishonorable to the French, 
its subsequent violation was not less so to the Spaniards. As the long 
files of prisoners marched across the country toward Cadiz, the revengeful 
passions of the populace became excited to see so large a body of men, 
stained by robbery and murder committed within the dominions- of Spain, 
about to embark for France, for no other purpo^r than to be again let 
loose in the Peninsula and commi* similar outrages. The popular indig- 
nation soon rose to such a neignt, that Castanos failed in every attempt to 
restrain it ; and when, during a collision between the prisoners and the 
people at Lebrixa, some of the sacred silver vessels stolen from Cordova 
were found among the baggage of the French soldiers, the governor of 
Cadiz, in conjunction with the junta of Seville, and in compliance with 
the demands of the exasperated populace, sent the vanquished troops to 
the hulks in the harbor of Cadiz, where they were confined during the 
war, and subjected to such hardships that few of them ever regained their 
native country. 

Joseph Bonaparte and his adherents were so alarmed at the result of 
the battle of Baylen, that they resolved to evacuate Madrid ; and, on the 
30th of July, the intrusive king commenced his retreat, having first 
ordered eighty pieces of heavy artillery, which he could not remove, to 
be spiked, and despoiled the palaces of all their jewels and other articles 
of value. The French troops were not molested by the Spaniards on 
their march, yet they robbed and burned every village and hamlet near 
which they passed. When Joseph arrived at Burgos, he was joined by 
Bessieres with his corps, and by Verdier with the force that had been 
driven from Saragossa ; and these, together with the division of Moncey, 

]808.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 245 

enabled him to take post behind the Ebro at the head of fifty thousand 

The feeling of discouragement among the French troops was not a 
little augmented by the ill success of their arms in Catalonia, where 
Generals Schwartz and Chabran, with two divisions of above four thou- 
sand men each, were severally defeated with great loss by the undis- 
ciplined but brave peasantry of that province. These reverses were 
followed by a more serious disaster at Gerona. General Duhesme, with 
six thousand men and a train of heavy artillery had laid siege to that 
town; but he was routed with a loss of nearly half his forces, all his 
stores, and thirty pieces of cannon. This accumulation of triumph pro- 
duced the happiest effect in animating the courage of the Spaniards ; but 
in the midst of their exultation it was observed, with regret, that few 
vigorous or efficient measures were adopted by the juntas for prosecuting 
the war. 

Meantime, Portugal became the theatre of important events. When 
the insurrection in the Peninsula first assumed a serious aspect, the 
British government resolved to throw their weight into the scale against 
Napoleon ; and they accordingly fitted out an expedition under the com- 
mand of Sir Arthur Wellesley, who arrived in Mondego Bay on the 31st 
of Jury. Pie commenced the disembarking of his troops on the day follow- 
ing, despite a strong west wind and heavy surf, and on the evening of the 
8th of August, his army of thirteen thousand men bivouacked on the beach. 
These troops took the field in the highest spirits and the most perfect state 
of discipline and equipment; but their commander had the mortification 
to learn, in his first movements, that little reliance could be placed on the 
cooperation of the Portuguese soldiers for the defence of their own terri- 
tories. Doubtless, this backwardness on their part was owing to their 
fears of the French, and their want of confidence in the prowess of their 
allies, whom they deemed inadequate to comeiiti with Napoleon's vete- 
rans. Sir Arthur nevertheless advanced into the country, and was 
received by the people with great enthusiasm. 

When Junot learned the arrival of the British troops, he called in his 
detached columns for the protection of Lisbon ; and Laborde, to gain 
time for the execution of this order, made a stand at Rolica, with five 
thousand men and five pieces of cannon. His ground was well o^^^n, 
being an elevated plateau between two lofty hills, which, in front of his 
lines, were covered with rocky thickets and close underwood of myrtle. 
Sir Arthur moved to the attack in three columns ; directing two of them 
to make their way over the mountains and turn the flanks of the enemy, 
while he led the third in person against the front of the position. As 
soon as Laborde saw this combined movement, he fell back precipitately 
to a valley higher up in the gorge, where the natural defences of the 
ground promised to atone for his inferiority of numbers. The British 
columns pressed on in pursuit, and a- spirited contest commenced, which 
ended in the retreat of Laborde, with a loss of six hundred men and 
three pieces of cannon. 

On the day after this action, and while the British troops were threat- 
ening the rear of Laborde's division, Sir Arthur ascertained that Junot 
was advancing toward him with his whole force, to offer a pitched battle; 
he therefore recalled his leading columns, and directed his march upon 
Vimiero where he established his head-quarters on the 19th of August 


Early in the morning of the 21sl, the French army approached the Eng- 
lish lines, and Laborde commenced an attack on their centre, which was 
promptly repulsed by the 50th regiment under Colonel Walker, who, 
throwing his men into echellon obliquely across the front and flank of 
an entire French brigade in close column, totally routed them before re- 
enforcements could come up. The battle was maintained with great 
spirit at all points ; but the French at length gave way, having sustained 
a loss of twenty-four hundred men and thirteen pieces of cannon, while 
the British loss did not exceed eight hundred. Sir Arthur had now an 
opportunity to fall upon and destroy the retreating French columns ; but 
Sir Harry Burrard, who had arrived to supersede him in the chief com- 
mand, and who, being an officer of the old school, considered one victory 
a sufficient achievment for one week, positively forbade the advance of 
the troops ; whereupon Sir Arthur, concealing the bitterness of his disap- 
pointment under an affected gayety, said to the officers of his staff, " Gen- 
tlemen, nothing now remains for us, but to go and shoot red-legged 

Sir Harry Burrard retained the office of commander-in-chief for a 
brief period only, as Sir Hugh Dalrymple reached the British head-quar- 
ters on the next day, and superseded him ; so that, within thirty hours, 
a pitched battle had been fought, and three generals successively took 
the supreme direction of the army. After conferring with his two prede- 
cessors, Sir Hugh resolved to advance on the French position at Torres 
Vedras ; but at this juncture, a flag of truce from Junot's camp was an- 
nounced, and Kellerman came forward with proposals for an armistice. 
Negotiations were immediately commenced, which terminated in the 
Convention of Cintra. This instrument provided that the French troops 
should evacuate the whole kingdom of Portugal, surrender all the for- 
tresses they held in its dominions to the British, and be conveyed to 
France with the artillery directly appertaining to their corps, and a por- 
tion of their ammunition. A separate clause stipulated that the Russian 
fleet of ten line-of-battle ships, then lying in the harbor of Lisbon, should 
be surrendered to the English commander and conveyed to Great Britain, 
there to remain in deposite until six months after the conclusion of a gen- 
eral peace : but the officers and crews were to be sent to Russia without 
delay, at the expense of the British government. It was further provided, 
that the French troops should be allowed to take with them their individ- 
ual property ; when, however, it was discovered that their disgraceful 
system of pillage in Lisbon had despoiled the palaces, churches, private 
houses, public treasury, and even the museums of their most valuable 
effects, and that the whole army, from Junot down to the meanest soldier, 
had participated in the robbery, the compact was so far modified as to 
enforce a restoration of the plunder. The homeward movement of the 
troops was now hastened on, and, by the middle of October, not a French 
soldier remained on the soil of Portugal. 

This triumph, however, great as it undoubtedly was, did not satisfy 
the expectations of the British people ; and the three generals were or, 
dered home, to answer to a Court of Inquiry, for neglect of duty in allow- 
ing Junot's troops so easy an escape. They were eventually acquitted, 
but Sir Arthur Wellesley alone was again intrusted with any important 
command in the British army. In the mean time, Sir John Moore landed 
at Lisbon with a division of fresh troops, and took command of the Eng. 

1808.] PI ISTORY OF EUROPE. 247 

lish forces. His first care was to put the fortresses of the kingdom in 'a 
condition of defence, and establish a central junta at Lisbon to administer 
the affairs of the government, in the absence of the Prince Regent. Hav- 
ing completed these preparations, he began his march for the seat of war 
at the foot of the Pyrenees. 

The campaign in the Peninsula had already produced an effect inimi- 
cal to France, in some of the other European states. Austria, as early 
as the 9th of June, taking alarm at Napoleon's progress, directed the 
formation of a landwehr, or local militia, in all the provinces of her do- 
minions ; and the Archduke Charles, at the head of the War Department, 
had infused great activity into the several branches of the regular army. 
Count Metternich, the Austrian ambassador at Paris, when pressed by 
the French Emperor for the reason of these movements, alleged that the 
cabinet of Vienna was only imitating the conduct of their powerful neigh- 
bors, and that since Bavaria had adopted the French system of conscrip- 
tion, and organized a National Guard on the French model, it became 
necessary for Austria to take corresponding measures in self-defence. 

Napoleon had now resolved to pursue the Spanish war to extermina- 
tion, and he made new demands on the Senate of Paris for anticipating 
the conscriptions of 1809 and 1810 ; but as the immense increase of force 
thus obtained still fell short of his wishes, he entered into a new treaty 
with Prussia, by which he agreed, on condition of receiving a hundred 
and forty millions of francs, to evacuate the Prussian territory, retaining 
only the fortresses of Glogau, Stettin and Custrin, which were each to be 
garrisoned with four thousand French soldiers, and such garrisons sup- 
ported at the sole expense of Prussia. Nor did Napoleon stop here ; but, 
proceeding from measures of active preparation to those of a precaution- 
ary character, he solicited and obtained an interview with the Emperor 
Alexander at Erfurth. The two sovereigns met at that place on the 
27th of September, and remained in daily communication until the 14th 
of October ; when they separated never to meet again in this world. The 
conferences between the monarchs were not reduced to formal or secret 
treaties ; at least, the existence of such treaties has never been discov- 
ered or avowed : but they were not on that account the less important. 
The principal object of Napoleon was, to secure the cooperation of Rus- 
sia against Austria, should the latter power attempt a hostile movement 
on France, while he was engaged in the Peninsula ; and, in return, he 
consented to Alexander's uniting Finland, Moldavia and Wallachia to 
the Russian dominions ; and promised the future aid of France in extend- 
ing the Muscovite rule over the Asiatic Continent. At the same time, he 
agreed to relax somewhat in the terms of his last treaty with Prussia, 
reducing the amount of the contribution to a hundred and twenty-five 
millions of francs, more than half of which sum was stipulated to be paid 
in the promissory notes of the Prussian government. Two other subjects 
were introduced at this conference by Napoleon, which, without directly 
accomplishing the ends he had in view, excited the distrust and jealousy 
of Alexander, and destroyed the confidence and regard that he had lat- 
terly entertained toward the French Emperor. These were, a proposal 
to divorce Josephine and contract a marriage with the Grand-duehesa 
Catherine, Alexander's favorite sister ; and the offer of certain equiva- 
lents for the cession of Constantinople to France. 

Napoleon reached Paris on the 29th of October ; and, having* dfai 



patched Murat to Naples, to take possession of the throne vacated by 
Joseph Bonaparte, he set out for Bayonne, to superintend in person the 
military operations in the Peninsula, where he had now assembled an 
army of no less than three hundred thousand men ; of whom, after de- 
ducting the garrisons in the northern fortresses of Spain, together with 
the sick and absent, fully one hundred and eighty thousand could be 
brought into active service on the Ebro : while his armies of reserve in 
France, which were preparing to join their brethren in the Peninsula, 
amounted to nearly five hundred thousand. 

To oppose this immense force, the Spaniards had but seventy-six thou- 
sand men in a condition to take the field. They were thus divided : 
Palafox, on the right, occupied the country between Saragossa and San- 
guessa, with eighteen thousand; Castanos, in the centre, was posted 
at Tarazona, with twenty-eight thousand ; and the left, under Blake, 
thirty thousand strong, lay on the rocky mountains near Reynosa. Sir 
John Moore was advancing to unite with the Spanish forces ; and the 
troops under his command, when joined by Sir David Baird's powerful 
reenforcement, would amount to thirty thousand men ; but they were yet 
at a distance from the scene of action, and Napoleon resolved to strike a 
decisive blow before their arrival. Blake, in the meantime, had assumed 
the offensive, and gained some inconsiderable success over detached par- 
ties of the French, which he followed up by capturing Bilboa after one 
day's investment. Encouraged by this, the Spanish general proposed a 
combined attack on the French position ; the nature of the ground, how- 
ever, and the want of discipline among the troops, prevented the several 
divisions from acting in concert, and Castanos, who first reached the 
enemy, was repulsed with loss at Logrono. This check led to dissen- 
sions between the commanders, and Palafox retired toward Saragossa, 
while Blake, who had unexpectedly received a reenforcement that raised 
his numbers to nearly fifty thousand, moved against the French left in 
the Biscayan provinces. His march, however, was disorderly, and the 
divisions of his army so widely separated, that Lefebvre fell on his ad- 
vanced guard, seventeen thousand strong, and totally routed them. 
Blake immediately fell back and concentrated his forces at Espinosa, 
where his numbers, reduced by defeat and disasters, scarcely exceeded 
twenty-five thousand men. Napoleon, who now took the chief direction 
of the French army, ordered Victor with a corps of twenty-five thousand 
strong, to attack Blake in front, while Lefebvre, with fifteen thousand 
troops, marched on his communications in the rear. These movements 
were decisive ; for although the Spanish soldiers in detached squadrons 
fought with great bravery, they were overpowered by the numbers and 
discipline of their assailants, and retreated in the greatest confusion, 
leaving nearly ten thousand men killed, wounded and prisoners, on the 
field. The routed army fled in two different directions ; Romana, with 
nine thousand stragglers made his way into Leon, and Blake, with seven 
thousand sought refuge at Reynosa, and there joined a portion of his re- 
serves. But he was rapidly pursued by Soult, and driven into the Astu- 
rian mountains, after having lost half his men, and all his ammunition 
and artillery. 

Soult next moved against Burgos, where eighteen thousand of the best 
troops in Spain had been hastily assembled under the Count de Belviderer 
The Spanish soldiers bravely sustained the attack of the French columns 

1808,] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 249 

for a short time ; but they soon gave way, leaving behind them twenty-eight 
hundred men and all their artillery and stores. Burgos fell into the hands 
of the French marshal, and, after being abandoned to pillage, became the 
head-quarters of Napoleon, who established himself there on the 12th of 
November. On receiving intelligence of this defeat, Castanos retired to 
Tudela, and formed a junction with Palafox : their united forces amounted 
to forty-three thousand men, with forty pieces of cannon. Marshal Ney 
pursued this army, and attacked its outposts on the 21st. The Spanish 
troops gave way at all points : fifteen thousand men, without artillery or 
ammunition, made their escape with Palafox to Saragossa ; twenty thou- 
sand, under Castanos, retreated on Catalayud ; five thousand were killed, 
wounded or made prisoners, and the remainder fled in total confusion to 
the mountains. 

This dispersion of the Spanish troops in the north laid open the road to 
Madrid, toward which Napoleon now advanced with the Imperial Guards 
and Victor's corps, amounting in all to sixty thousand men. On the 30th 
of November, he encountered a serious opposition in the pass of Somo- 
Sierra, where twelve thousand Spaniards, with sixteen pieces of cannon, 
made a desperate stand, and for a while arrested the march of the whole 
French army. Nothing, however, could resist the enthusiasm of Napo- 
leon's veterans, when fighting under his own eye. By an impetuous 
charge up the rugged ascent of the defile, they carried the Spanish bat- 
teries at the point of the bayonet, dispersed the whole covering force, and 
hastened on to Madrid without further opposition. 

The inhabitants of the Spanish capital were thrown into the utmost 
consternation when they learned that the pass of Somo-Sierra had been 
forced, and that Napoleon's columns were advancing against their de- 
fenceless walls. There were but three hundred regular troops in the 
town, with two battalions of new levies : nevertheless, vigorous prepara- 
tions were made for defence. Eight thousand muskets and a large num- 
ber of pikes were distributed to the people, heavy cannon were planted 
on the Retire and in the principal streets, the pavements were torn up, 
barricades erected, and the most enthusiastic spirit pervaded the multi- 
tude. On the morning of the 2nd, the advanced guard of the French 
army reached the heights north of Madrid, and Napoleon, who was very 
desirous to gain possession of the Spanish capital on the anniversary of 
his coronation and of the battle of Austerlitz, immediately summoned il 
to surrender; but the proposal was indignantly rejected. 

During the night, the French infantry arrived in great strength, and 
early on the 3rd, the Emperor directed an assault on the Retire, the 
heights of which entirely command the city. This important post was 
speedily carried, and as the town became now indefensible in a military 
point of view, a capitulation took place : on the 4th of December, Madrid 
was occupied by the French troops. Napoleon did not himself enter the 
town, but established his head-quarters at Chamartin, where he received 
the submission of the authorities and regulated the affairs of the govern- 
ment. In a short time, everything bore the appearance of peace : the 
theatres were reopened, citizens crowded the public walks, and the trades 
resumed their former activity. By a solemn decree, the Emperor abol- 
ished the Inquisition and appropriated its funds to the reduction of the 
public debt ; and, in general, the measures taken by Napoleon were well 
adapted to secure his own authority and the good will and confidence of 
the inhabitants. 



While the French Emperor was thus engaged in the civil affairs ot 
Spain, and was hastening forward his armies for the complete subjugation 
of her provinces, Sir David Baird had landed atCorunnaand formed a junc- 
tion with Sir John Moore, and Hope's division had also arrived from the Es- 
curial, so that the British army amounted to nearly thirty thousand men. 
Sir John Moore, as soon as he heard of the surrender of Madrid and the 
great accumulation of force in that quarter, boldly resolved to throw him- 
self on the French line of communication and attack Soult, who at that time 
lay in fancied security with fifteen thousand men in the valley of the Car- 
rion. He accordingly commenced his march on the llth of December; 
but, prudently considering, that by some unexpected change in the position 
of the French armies he might become involved with forces greatly out- 
numbering his own, he combined with his forward movement the prepara- 
tions for a retreat, and provided magazines for the latter purpose both on the 
route to Lisbon and to Galicia. The English troops proceeded with great 
alacrity toward the promised field of combat, and on their way encoun- 
tered and defeated several detached parties of the enemy : while Soult, 
alarmed at the sudden and near approach of the British, concentrated his 
men along the banks of the Carrion in the neighborhood of Saldana, where 
General Moore proposed to attack him on the 23rd. The moment that the 
advance of the British army was known in Madrid, Napoleon recalled 
every division that was moving toward the south, and hurried them by 
forced marches to the support of Marshal Soult. On the 22nd of De- 
cember, he had reached the pass of Guadarama with overwhelming num- 
bers ; on the 26th, his head-quarters were at Tordesillas, his cavalry at 
Valladolid, and Marshal Ney at Rio-Seco. Fully anticipating the entire 
destruction of the British army, the Emperor now wrote to Soult, " If the 
English remain another day in their position, they are undone. Should 
they attack you, retire a day's march to the rear : if they retreat, pursue 
them closely." 

But Sir John Moore was as vigilant as his redoubtable antagonist. 
Finding, from the unexpected rapidity of Napoleon's advance, that he 
could not safely remain to combat with Soult, he suspended his march on 
the 23rd, and on the 24th commenced his retreat toward Galicia, to the 
infinite mortification of the British soldiers, who were in the highest spirits 
and eager for the contest. On the 26th, Baird's division crossed the Esla, 
while Moore, who remained with the rear-guard to protect the stores and 
baggage in their passage over the bridge of Castro Gonzalo, was threat- 
ened by a body of Ney's horsemen. Lord Paget, however, with two 
squadrons of cavalry, overthrew the French detachment, making a hun- 
dred prisoners, besides killing and wounding a large number. General 
Moore, by a timely retreat, reached Benavente before the enemy, and thus 
preserved his own communications entire. The army remained here for 
two days, reposing from its fatigues ; but the discipline of the men in three 
days of retrograde movement had become seriously impaired. On the 
28th, Moore continued his retreat, having first destroyed the bridge over 
the Esla, the repairing of which detained Bessieres until the 30th, when 
he crossed the river with nine thousand cavalry and followed in pursuit 
of the English columns. Soult at the same time passed the bridge of 
Mansilla, overspread the plains of Leon with his troops, and captured the 
town of that name, which contained a large quantity of military stores 
belonging to the Spanish government. 

1809.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 251 

On the 1st of January, the corps of Soult and Ney, seventy thousand 
strong, were joined at Astorga by the Emperor, who, on the road from 
Benavente to that place, while riding at a full gallop with his advanced 
guard in pursuit of the English troops, was overtaken by a courier with 
dispatches. He instantly dismounted, ordered a bivouac fire to be lighted 
by the roadside, and, seating himself by it on the ground, was soon so lost 
in thought that he became insensible to the snow which fell in thick 
wreaths around him. He had ample subject for meditation : Austria had 
made hostile demonstrations against France and was preparing to take 
the field. He rode on slowly and pensively to Astorga, and remained 
there two days writing innumerable dispatches, and regulating at once 
the pursuit of the English army, the internal affairs of Spain, and the 
organization of the troops of the Rhenish Confederacy. On the 3rd of 
January, he returned to Valladolid and proceeded thence by Burgos and 
Bayonne to Paris, where he arrived on the 23rd. 

The Emperor's withdrawal from Spain made no change in the vigor 
of the French pursuit. Soult, with his own corps, twenty-four thousand 
strong, pressed rapidly forward and constantly harassed the rear of the 
British army, while Ney, moving with still greater celerity, threatened its 
flank. Meanwhile, the British rear-guard, commanded by Sir John Moore 
in person, maintained its high character for resolution and discipline ; bu,t 
the remainder of the troops, disgusted and disheartened by a protracted 
retreat through a rough country and in midwinter, broke their ranks, 
refused to obey their officers, and became little better than a horde of 
stragglers more to be dreaded by friends than enemies. In this deplorable 
condition, they reached Lugo late in the evening of the 6th of January. 

Here the British general halted, and in a proclamation issued the fol- 
lowing day, severely rebuked the men for their insubordination, and 
announced his intention to give battle to the French. .Instantly, and as 
if by enchantment, the disorder of the troops was at an end. The strag- 
glers returned to their ranks, with their arms cleaned, their faces joyful 
and their confidence restored : before the morning of the 8th, nineteen 
thousand men stood in battle array, impatiently awaiting the attack of the 
enemy. But Soult declined the combat, though his army amounted to 
twenty-one thousand men, with fifty pieces of artillery in line. Neverthe- 
less, Moore had gained the advantage of reorganizing his troops, and was 
in much better condition than before for continuing his retreat. During 
the night, he broke up from his position, and moved on toward Corunna, 
where he arrived on the llth of January. As the troops successively 
reached the heights whence the sea became visible, all eyes turned anx- 
iously toward the bay, in hopes that the vessels for their transportation 
might be awaiting them there ; but the vast expanse was vacant, and a 
few coasters and fishing- boats, alone could be descried on the dreary 
main. There was now, therefore, no alternative but a battle : the sea 
was in front, the enemy in the rear, and a victory was indispensable to 
secure the means of embarkation. The troops accordingly made great 
efforts to strengthen the land-defences, which, though regular, were very 
weak ; and the inhabitants of the town assisted in this laborious duty. 
On the 14th, the transports from Vigo hove in sight, and stood into the 
bay, when the embarkation of the sick and wounded was immediately 
commenced. The greater part of the artillery was next put on board; 
for, during all the confusion of the retreat, not one gun had ben lost. 



While these movements were in progress at the shore of the bay, the 
effective portion of the British army, still fourteen thousand strong, was 
drawn up with great care by Sir John Moore, on a range of heights, or 
rather, of knolls, which form a sort of amphitheatre around the village of 
Elvira, at the distance of rather more than a mile from Corunna. The 
French, twenty thousand strong, were posted on a higher semi-circular 
ridge, distant about one mile from the English position. 

From the inactivity of the French troops during the 14th and 15th, 
General Moore was led to believe that they had no serious intention of 
disquieting his retreat, and he made preparations for withdrawing his army 
into the town on the night of the 16th, in order to embark on board of the 
transports. About noon on that day, however, a general movement was 
seen along the French lines, and at two o'clock, their infantry in four 
massy columns descended to the attack. Notwithstanding their inferi- 
ority of numbers, the British soldiers stood to their arms with the most in- 
vincible resolution, yielding, at intervals, to the pressure of the French 
columns, but eventually repelling every assault, with great loss to the 
enemy. At the moment when they had forced back the French centre 
from Elvina, at the point of the bayonet, Sir John Moore was struck down 
by a cannon-shot, and Sir David Baird, also desperately wounded, was 
borne senseless from the field. The battle still raged, however, and the 
French were fast giving ground, when the sudden approach of night put 
an end to the strife, and saved them from destruction. General Hope, on 
whom the command of the British army devolved, conceiving that its safe 
embarkation was now of more consequence than following up the victory, 
withdrew into the town, and the troops were put on board the vessels 
without confusion or delay. 

After Sir John Moore had received his death- wound, he remained for a 
time sitting on the ground and watching the progress of the British charge ; 
when he saw that it was successful, and the victory secure, he reluctantly 
allowed himself to be conveyed to the rear. As the soldiers placed him on 
a blanket to carry him from the field, the hilt of his sword became en- 
tangled in the wound, and Captain Hardinge attempted to take it off; but 
the dying hero said, " It is well as it is : I would rather it should go from 
the field with me." The examination of the wound at his lodgings, shut 
out all hope of his recovery, but did not affect his serenity of mind. He 
continued to converse in a calm and cheerful voice until a few moments 
before his death, and when that event took place, he was wrapped in his 
military cloak and laid in a grave hastily dug on the ramparts of Corunna. 
A monument was soon after erected over his uncoffined remains by the 
gene)sity of Marshal Ney. 



AUSTRIA had improved to the utmost the interval of peace thai fol- 
lowed the treaty of Presburg, and by an energetic policy, patiently and 
silently pursued, had raised her war establishment to a formidable con- 
dition. Napoleon was fully aware of her movements, and more than 
once remonstrated against them, on the ground that they were dangerous 
to the peace of Europe ; and in reply, the cabinet of Vienna alleged 
that their measures were merely precautionary and defensive, while, at 
the same time, they were careful not to relax one moment in their efforts. 
Although Napoleon was not deceived as to Austria's intentions, yet, while 
occupied in the affairs of the Peninsula, her assumption of hostilities took 
him by surprise, and it became necessary for him to make extraordinary 
exertions in order to commence the campaign on a footing of equality 
with his antagonist : indeed, had Austria pressed her offensive operations 
with the same vigor as she manifested in preparing for them, she must 
have gained important victories before Napoleon could bring his best 
troops into the field ; for the flower of the French army was in Spain, and 
the forces that he retained in Germany, though powerful in the aggregate, 
were as yet scattered in detached masses, from the Alps to the Baltic, 
offering an easy triumph to a concentrated and active foe. But it was 
not the fate or fortune of Austria to reap advantage from rapid military 

The plan of Napoleon, was at the outset strictly defensive, in order to 
gain time for assembling his scattered forces into effective masses ; and as 
he deemed it unfitting that he should be at the head of his army before it 
was prepared for decisive blows, Berthier was dispatched, early in April, 
to assume the chief command. 

On the 17th of March, Austria had mustered a hundred and forty thou- 
sand men on the two banks of the Danube, within eight days' march of 
Ratisbon : on the same day, Davoust quitted his cantonments on the Oder 
and Lower Elbe, in the north part of Germany ; Massena was yet on the 
Rhine, the Bavarians on the Iser, and Oudinot alone at Augsburg. The 
French corps could, therefore, have been easily cut off from each other, 
and beaten in detail, by a rapid advance of the Imperialists toward Man- 
heim ; but the execution of such a design required an alacrity and vigor 
practically unknown to the Austrians, who, by hesitating until the French 
troops were concentrated on the Danube, lost the great advantage of their 
central position in Bohemia. And when, at last, it was resolved to attack 
the enemy in Bavaria, the Aulic Council, instead of permitting the Arch- 
duke Charles to fall perpendicularly on the French corps scattered to the 
south, along the valley of the Danube, ordered him to counter-march the 
great body of his men, and open the campaign on the Inn : a gratuitous 
and egregious error, which forced his army to march thrice the necessary 
distance, and gave the enemy a proportionably increased time to collect 
their forces to resist him. This toilsome arid useless march was, how- 
ever, at length completed ; the Austrian columns, after moving a hundred 

254 II I S T O R Y O F E U R O P E . [Ciur, XXX. 

miles back toward Vienna, and crossing the Danube, were arrayed on the 
right bank of the Inn, on the 10th of April; and the Archduke prepared 
to carry the war into the vast levtSl plains which stretch from the southern 
banks of the Danube to the foot of the Alps. 

The instructions of Napoleon to Berthier, were clear and precise: if 
the Austrians commenced their attack before the 15th of April, he was to 
concentrate his army on the Lech, around Donauwerth ; if after that 
date, at Ratisbon, guarding the right bank of the Danube from that place 
o Passau. But on the 12th of April, by means of the telegraph which 
he had established in Central Germany, the Emperor was apprised at 
Paris of the Archduke's crossing the Inn. He immediately left the capi- 
tal for the seat of war, where he arrived on the 17th of April ; and in the 
meantime, the immense forces converging from the mountains of Galicia 
and the banks of the Oder to the valley of the Danube, had gradually 
reached the frontiers of Germany. 

It was high time for him to take the command ; for, great as were the. 
faults of the Austrian movements, Berthier had nevertheless brought the 
French forces to the verge of destruction. Instead of concentrating them 
at Ratisbon or Donauwerth, he dispersed them, despite the remonstrances 
of Davoust and Massena, with the insane purpose of stopping at all points 
the advance of the Austrians ; and nothing but the tardy march of the 
latter saved the French from serious disasters. The Archduke crossed 
the Inn on the 10th, at Braunau, and on the 16th, he had barely reached 
the Iser, a distance of only twenty leagues. On the same day, however, 
he attacked Landshut, and compelled General Deroy, who commanded 
the Bavarian garrison, to evacuate the town ; and as the line of the Iser 
was thus abandoned, he crossed the river and moved by the great road of 
Nuremberg, toward the bridges of Ratisbon, Neustadt and Kellheim, in 
order to secure both banks of the Danube. Yet even then, when the 
Austrians were greatly superior to the enemy's forces on any one point, 
they marched at the rate of but three leagues a day. Nevertheless, the 
approach of a hundred and twenty thousand Austrians, even though 
moving at a snail's pace, threw Berthier into the greatest consternation. 
Contrary to the urgent entreaties of his generals, he compelled Davoust 
to strengthen himself at Ratisbon, and ordered Massena to defend the line 
of the Lech ; at the same time he directed Lefebvre, Wrede and Oudinot, 
to place their several corps in three lines, one behind another, across Ba- 
varia a position so useless and absurd, that more than one of the mar- 
shals ascribed his conduct to treachery, although that charge is certainly 
without foundation. The result of these joint movements was, that Da- 
voust, with sixty thousand men, became gradually hemmed in at Ratisbon 
by the Archduke's army, a hundred and twenty thousand strong ; and as 
the orders he received from Berthier compelled him to remain there, like 
a tiger at bay, no other fate seemed to await him than the disaster which, 
four years previously, befell Mack at Ulm. 

Matters were in this critical state when Napoleon arrived at Donau- 
werth. Having fully informed himself of what had taken place, he dis- 
patched the most pressing orders to Massena to hasten, at least with his 
advanced guard and cavalry, to PlafFenhofen, a considerable town be- 
tween Augsburg and Neusiadt. He also commanded Davoust to march 
in the direction of Neustadt and form a junction with Lefebvre. It may 
oe presumed that these orders were promptly obeyed, although it was 

1809.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 255 

impossible for the two marshals to reach the points designated, before the 
19th of April. On the 17th, the Archduke detached fifteen thousand men 
under the Archduke Louis, to watch the troops of the Confederacy on the 
Abeas, while he himself marched with the main strength of his army 
toward Ratisbon, to gain possession of the bridge at that place, and, by 
thus securing the command of both banks of the Danube, open a free 
communication with the two corps, under Klenau, on the opposite side of 
the river. The Archduke's light cavalry which, under Hohenzollern, 
had been pushed out on the left to cover the flank of the columns pro- 
ceeding to Ratisbon, reached Thaun on the 19th, and there unexpectedly 
encountered St. Hilaire and Friant, who were covering Davoust's march 
through the defile of Portsaal. The two parties simultaneously attacked 
each other, and as fresh troops successively came on to the assistance of 
their comrades, no less than twenty thousand men, in the aggregate, were 
engaged before nightfall. A violent thunder storm finally separated the 
combatants, after each side had sustained a loss of three thousand men. 

As soon as the two corps of Davoust and Lefebvre were united, Napo- 
leon resolved to assume a vigorous offensive, for which, indeed, the rela- 
tive position of the armies now presented a tempting opportunity. By 
extraordinary exertions, he had brought sixty-five thousand men into one 
mass, on the flank of fifty thousand Austrians, who, in four detached corps 
under officers acting independently of each other, were scattered over 
several leagues of country, and leisurely moving toward a common cen- 
tre, where they anticipated a junction with the Archduke and a pitched 
battle. Napoleon ordered an immediate and simultaneous attack on these 
divisions, commanded, severally, by the Archduke Louis, the Prince of 
Reuss, Hiller and Thierry ; and they were so taken by surprise at the 
unexpected assault, that they fled on the first charge. Instead of a 
regular action, a running fight took place, which continued through the 
day, and ended in a loss to the Austrians of eight thousand men. Yet, 
notwithstanding this precipitate retreat, they evinced their high discipline, 
by maintaining their ranks and keeping possession of every piece of their 

On the same day that this action took place, April 20th, the Archduke 
pressed his attack upon Ratisbon. That town, commanding the only 
stone bridge over the Danube below Ulm, was at all times a point of con- 
sequence, and was now eminently so from the position of the Austrian 
forces. The assault was made on two sides of the town at once ; and 
although the slender garrison of three thousand men left by Davoust, de- 
fended themselves bravely for a time ; they were forced to yield to the 
great preponderance of numbers, and surrendered at discretion. 

After the defeat of the four Austrian divisions, Napoleon proposed to 
throw himself on the communications of the Archduke ; but, to conceal 
his movements he sent Davoust against Ratisbon, with a force sufficient 
to command the Archduke's notice, while he in person pushed forward 
toward Landshut, whither the columns of Hiller and the Archduke Louis 
were retreating. He overtook these troops on the 21st, routed and drove 
them through Landshut, made himself master of that town, and inflicted 
a loss on the Austrians of nearly six thousand men, of whom the greater 
part were prisoners, together with twenty-five pieces of cannon, and a 
large quantity of baggage and ammunition. Davoust, in the meantime, 
had made his demonstration against the Archduke at Ratisbon, where a 



serious action ensued, and each party suffered a loss of nearly three 
thousand men; the. battle was terminated by the approach of night, and 
both armies remained on the field ; but as Davoust had accomplished his 
purpose of diverting the Archduke's attention from Napoleon's movement, 
he with reason claimed the advantages of a victory. 

As a general action between the Archduke and Napoleon now became 
inevitable, both commanders prepared themselves for the contest ; but there 
was this essential difference in their respective arrangements : Napoleon 
concentrated his troops into one mass ; while the Archduke, ignorant of 
the numbers opposed to him, divided his army into two equal corps, dis- 
patched one of them under Kollowrath and Lichtenstein, on the road to 
Echmul, and himself retained command of the other in front of Ratisbon. 
Thus one half of his army, forty thousand strong, led by Kollowrath and 
Lichtenstein, was to contend with more than seventy-five thousand 
French troops, flushed with victory, and animated by the Emperor's 

The battle commenced at noonday, on the 22nd of April, by an attack 
on the Austrian left wing, followed by a movement against the centre, at 
Echmul. The charge on the left was successful, and that portion of the 
Imperialist army fell back with severe loss and some confusion ; but the 
centre stood firm in spite of every effort of Napoleon, until a division of 
reserve, taking advantage of the discomfiture of the left wing, assailed it 
in flank, when it retired in good order. The Austrian right had, in the 
meantime, held its ground, though assailed by superior numbers both in 
front and rear; but when, by the defeat of the centre and left, the whole 
French line was enabled to act against this remaining division, it also 
gave way and joined the retreat toward Ratisbon. The Archduke now 
endeavored to protect the army, which his imprudence had exposed to 
such disaster ; and, pressing forward his cuirassiers, interposed a pow- 
erful barrier between his own troops and the pursuing columns of the 
enemy. The French light-horse were quickly dispersed ; but Napo- 
leon's cuirassiers soon came up, and the two rival divisions, equally 
brave and equally disciplined, engaged in mortal combat. So vehement 
was their onset, and so nearly matched was the strength of the combat- 
ants, both armies, as if by mutual consent, suspended their fire to await 
its issue : the roar of musketry subsided, the heavy booming of the artil- 
lery ceased, and from the melee no sound was heard but the clang of sa- 
bres, ringing on the helmets and breast-plates of this redoubtable cavalry; 
and when the sun went down, the darkness was illumined by the myriads 
of sparks that flew from their swords and armor. Victory at length de- 
clared in favor of the French, and the Austrian cuirassiers, after leaving 
two-thirds of their number on the field, retreated to Ratisbon. But their 
heroic efforts, however fatal to themselves, saved the Austrian army. 
During the engagement, the artillery and infantry withdrew unmolested 
to the rear, and Napoleon, fearful of falling into some disaster by a fur- 
ther pursuit in the night, reluctantly gave orders to the army to halt and 
bivouac on the ground they occupied. 

The situation of the Archduke became now very critical : he was 
threatened in front by the victorious army of Napoleon, and the Danube, 
traversed by a single bridge, lay in his rear. The arrival of ree'nforce- 
ments had raised his numbers to eighty thousand men ; but he feared to 
hazard another battle in such a position, as, in case of disaster, he had no 

1809.] HISTORY OF EUROPE. 257 

means of retreat. He had lost five thousand men in killed and wounded, 
and seven thousand prisoners, in the battle of Echmul, besides twelve 
standards and sixteen pieces of cannon ; and although Lichtenstein's 
corps more than replaced those losses, the spirits of his whole army were 
depressed by reverses and fatigue. Besides, the French guards under 
Oudinot, had just arrived from Spain, and Massena's corps, which had not 
yet been engaged at all, would come into action with the efficiency of 
fresh troops. Influenced by these circumstances, he resolved to retire 
immediately, and restore the courage and discipline of his men by 
repose in Bohemia, before again undertaking active operations. He 
threw a bridge of boats over the Danube, and by that and the bridge of 
Ratisbon, the troops defiled without intermission, through the whole night. 
This movement was executed with such expedition and order, that before 
nine o'clock, on the following morning, not only the great body of the 
soldiers, but all the guns, baggage and ammunition wagons were safely 
disposed on the opposite side of the river. 

As soon as Napoleon discovered that the Austrians had escaped him, 
he ordered a violent attack on their rear-guard, which had now retired 
within the walls of Ratisbon, closed the gates and manned the ramparts 
to check his pursuit. He himself reached the scene of action at noon, 
and, in his anxiety to press the assault, approached so near the town that 
a musket ball struck him on the foot. The pain occasioned by the shot 
forced him to dismount ; and for the moment, a belief that he was danger- 
ously wounded, created some confusion in the ranks ; but after his foot 
had been hastily dressed, he mounted his horse again, and the soldiers 
with loud cheers returned to the attack. The defences of the town could 
not long withstand the whole French army, and Ratisbon soon fell into 
their hands ; but the steadiness of the Hungarian grenadiers and artillery 
resisted every attempt to cross the bridge, and the French head-quarters 
were for the night established under the walls at the convent of Prull. 

Twelve days only had elapsed, since Napoleon left Paris; yet within 
that time, he had reassembled his army from its imprudent dispersion by 
Berthier, fought the Austrians in several battles, separated Hiller and the 
Archduke Louis from the Archduke Charles, thrown the two former back 
on the Inn, but with forces too inconsiderable to cover Vienna, and driven 
the latter to a retreat toward the Bohemian mountains. Thirty thousand 
Austrians had fallen or been made prisoners in the various engagements; 
a hundred pieces of cannon, six hundred ammunition wagons, and an im- 
mense quantity of baggage had been taken, and the road to Vienna now 
lay open to the conqueror. The losses of the French amounted to twenty 
thousand men. 

Yet, although these brilliant triumphs attended the arms of Napoleon, 
where he commanded in person, the war assumed a different aspect in 
other quarters ; and it already became manifest, that the invincible vete- 
rans of the Republic were wearing out, and that the conscripts of the 
Empire were in no respect superior to the improved and invigorated 
troops opposed to them. Hiller, who had retired to the Inn after the dis- 
aster of Landshut, finding that he was not pressed by the French, but 
that Napoleon had moved in another direction, determined to take ven- 
geance on the Bavarians, by whom he had been somewhat incautiously 
pursued. He therefore turned upon a corps of those troops under 
Wrede, who, with the French reserve of Bessieres, were advancing be- 

258 H I S T O R Y O F E U R P E . [CHAP. XXX. 

yond the defile of Neumarck, and had taken post on the heights of St. 
Verti. The Bavarians at first made a stout resistance, but they were 
soon overpowered, and though Molitor came up to their support with some 
regiments of the Imperial Guard, he, too, was compelled to retreat with 
considerable loss. 

A more serious disaster about the same time b-fell the Viceroy Eu- 
gene Beauharnois, on the plains of Italy, where the Archduke John 
moved against him with forty eight thousand men. His own forces, en- 
camped at Sacile, did not exceed forty-five thousand. The Archduke 
commenced the attack at noon, on the 16th of April ; and after the action 
had been maintained for some hours with nearly equal fortune, Eugene's 
troops fell into confusion, broke their ranks, and fled in the greatest dis- 
order toward the Adige : but for the intervention of night his whole army 
would have been destroyed. His loss was eight thousand men, in killed, 
wounded, and prisoners, besides fifteen pieces of cannon ; while the Aus- 
trians' killed and wounded was something less than four thousand. 

The Archduke Charles, finding that Napoleon was resolved to push 
forward to Vienna, ordered Hiller to retard the advance by all possible 
means, recalled the Archduke John from Italy, and himself formed a 
junction with Bellegarde. The French Emperor arrived at Braunau on 
the 1st of May, and hastened to the utmost the march of his troops, while 
Hiller took post at Ebersbenr to defend the passage of the Traun, and 
cover the wooden bridge at Mauthausen. When the French reached the 
left bank of the Traun, beyond Scharlentz and in front of Ebersberg, 
they found their progress arrested by 'the most formidable obstacles. 
Before them lay the bed of the impetuous Traun, nearly eight hundred 
yards broad, intersected by sand-banks and islands, and traversed by a 
causeway terminating in a bridge three hundred yards long, over the 
largest arm of the river. The bridge, closed at its western extremity by 
the gate of Ebersberg, was commanded by musketeers posted in the 
houses of the town, and by an array of artillery disposed on the adjoining 
heights. The hills next the river were covered with infantry, interspersed 
with powerful batteries ; and beyond these rose a more elevated range of 
heights, clothed with pines and traversed by a single road. 

It required no ordinary resolution, to attack thirty-five thousand men 
in such a position supported by eighty pieces of cannon ; but Massena, 
who led the advanced guard of the army, and burned with a desire to 
illustrate his name by some brilliant exploit in a campaign where hith- 
erto he had lacked opportunity to distinguish himself, resolved to hazard 
an assault. He at first drove in the Austrian outposts on the right bank, 
without much difficulty; but when his columns reached the long bridge, 
they were swept down by such a storm of musket balls and grape shot, 
that they fell back in dismay. General Cohorn immediately led a column 
of fresh troops to the head of the bridge ; and although these, in turn, 
were struck down by hundreds, they still advanced with desperate reso- 
lution up to the gate of Ebersberg, where they were nearly all destroyed. 
Ne 'ertheless, as the passage was thus shown to be practicable, though 
at L ruinous loss, Massena pushed forward column after column to the 
scene of slaughter ; the gate was assailed by troops who seemed utterly 
reckless of life, and in the mean time, a powerful detachment had pressed 
around to the rear of the town. The gate was speedily forced, the batte- 
ries silenced, arid the town taken ; while Hiller, yielding at first to the lire- 

1809.1 II I S T O R Y O F E U R O P E . 259 

sistible valor, and afterward to the overwhelming numbers of the whole 
French army, retired in good order, disputing every foot of ground, until 
the approach of night brought the battle to a close. He then withdrew 
to Etins, burned the bridge of the river of that name, and retreated to- 
ward Amstetten. In this terrible conflict few trophies remained to the 
victors; they captured four guns and two standards, and the loss in 
killed and wounded on each side, amounted to six thousand men. 

As Hiller was unable after this to resist the French advance, 
he continued his retreat to the neighborhood of Vienna ; while Napoleon, 
uninformed of the Archduke's movements and fearful of penetrating into 
the country without knowing the position of his principal antagonist, 
halted for two days at Enns, where he reestablished the bridge, and col- 
lected a number of boats, which he already foresaw would be required for 
crossing the Danube in front of the capital. On the 8th of May, he re- 
sumed his march, and on the 10th, the French eagles with the leading 
columns of the army appeared before the walls of Vienna. For a time, 
the Archduke Maximilian, who had command of the city, thought of 
attempting its defence ; but the project was soon abandoned, and he with- 
drew his troops to the north across the bridge of Thabor, which he after- 
ward burned. As, however, the town made a show of resistance, Napo- 
leon ordered a bombardment to be commenced, when General O'Reilly 
sent proposals for a capitulation. The terms were soon arranged, and 
were ratified on the morning of the 13th of May. The security of pri- 
vate property of every description was guarantied, and the arsenal with 
all the public stores were surrendered to the victors. 

The French troops took possession of the gates at noonday, on the 
13th, and at that time the positions of several corps of the army were as 
follows: the corps of Lannes, with four divisions of cuirassiers of the 
reserve cavalry, and all the Imperial Guard, was stationed at Vienna; 
Massena lay between Vienna and the Simmering, his advanced posts 
occupying the Prater and watching the banks of the Danube ; Davoust 
was advancing in echelon, along the margin of that river, between Ebers- 
berg and St. Polten, having his head-quarters at Melk; Vandamme, with 
the Wirtemberg troops, guarded the bridge of Lintz ; and Bernadotte, 
with the Saxons and other troops of the Confederation, about thirty 
thousand strong, had arrived at Passau, and was moving on to form the 
reserve of the army, which, independently of his forces and those of Le- 
febvre in the Tyrol, numbered a hundred thousand men. 

While such was the posture of affairs in the vicinity of the Austrian 
capital, the Archduke Charles was making his way toward the same 
quarter, but with a tardiness which, to this day, remains wholly unex- 
plained. After learning Napoleon's march toward Vienna, he moved 
upon Budweiss, forty leagues northwest of the capital, and arrived there 
on the 3rd of May ; on the 4th, he received intelligence of Hiller's defeat 
at Ebersberg, which left the road open for the French advance ; and yet 
he remained totally inactive at Budweiss for three days. At length, on 
the morning of the 8th, he marched to intercept the progress of the in- 
vaders ; but his previous delay rendered his present haste unavailing, 
and with the utmost efforts, his advanced guard could not reach Hiller's 
position until the evening of the 15th, when Napoleon was securely estab- 
lished in Vienna. 

On the 29th of April, the Archduke John, in conformity to the orders 


he had received, broke up from his position on the Adige, to unite with 
the Austrian grand army for the defence of the capital. But he was so 
warmly pursued by Eugene Beauharnois, and conducted his retreat so in- 
differently, that the viceroy was enabled to cut off a large portion of his 
troops, take his artillery, and capture a number of important fortresses 
on the route ; in addition to which disasters, he was eventually forced 
into the plains of Hungary, and thereby prevented from taking any im- 
mediate part in the important events about to occur near Vienna. 

The eyes of all Europe were now turned to the banks of the Danube, 
near Vienna, where two armies, each a hundred thousand strong, pre- 
pared for a deadly, and, to all appearance, a final conflict. The Danube, 
as it approaches the Austrian capital, swells into a wide expanse, and em- 
braces several islands in its course : some of these are large and highly 
cultivated, but the greater part are small and covered with woods. The 
island of Prater, with its beautiful shady avenues and recesses, and that 
of Lobau, with its rich inclosures, are the most considerable : the latter 
is nearly three miles in length, by two in breadth, and the space between 
it and the southern bank of the stream, is studded by several smaller 
islands. It was at this point that Napoleon resolved to force a passage 
across the Danube, and the whole army was occupied for some days in 
the undertaking : at length, everything being in readiness, a strong de- 
tachment embarked in boats and effected a landing at Lobau. The 
troops now readily established a bridge from the southern shore to that 
island ; they next threw a pontoon train across to the northern bank, and 
on the morning of the 21st, forty thousand men had defiled to the oppo- 
site side of the river, and established themselves in front of the Austrian 

The Archduke Charles had, in the meantime, remained with the 
greater part of his army on the heights of Bisamberg, carefully observ- 
ing the French movements, and offering no obstacle to their progress ; but 
resolved, the moment a sufficient number should have crossed the river 
and become temporarily separated from the support of the main army, to 
fall upon them with his whole force. He also sent instructions to Kol- 
lowrath, Nordman, and other officers in command farther up the river, 
to collect boats with combustible materials, and float them down to de- 
stroy the enemy's bridge. At twelve o'clock, on the 21st, he gave the 
signal to advance, and his troops, with loud shouts, rushed from their ele- 
vated encampment toward the French position. 

The termination of the pontoon bridge rested on the plain of Marchfield, 
and on either side of this open space were the two villages of Aspern and 
Essling, each distant half a mile from the river. The houses of these 
villages were built of stone, chiefly two stories in height, and surrounded 
by inclosures and garden walls, so that they were capable of an obsti- 
nate defence. 

Aspern, into which Massena had not with sufficient promptitude thrown 
an adequate garrison, was at first carried by Hiller's advanced guard ; 
but Molitor came up with his whole division and not only retook it, but 
pursued the Austrian detachment, until the advance of Hohenzollern 
drove him in turn back to the village; and as Hiller's column rapidly 
followed on, a desperate combat ensued there. The Austrian infantry, 
the Hungarian grenadiers, and the volunteer corps of Vienna, strove to 
outdo each other in feats of daring and valor; while the several divis- 


ions of Massena's corps, fighting under the veteran marshal's eye, bravely 
sustained every attack, and from the streets, gardens, windows and house- 
tops, kept up a murderous fire on their assailants. Hour after hour the 
battle raged, and when the sun went down, the scene of strife was illu- 
minated by the burning houses: at eleven o'clock, the Austrians finally 
prevailed, and the village remained in their hands for the night. 

The plain between Aspern and Essling, had also been the scene of a 
desperate battle. The Austrian artillery were posted in great strength 
in this open field, and the French columns were so galled on all sides 
by tremendous fire, that Napoleon ordered a general charge of 
cavalry to dislodge them. The light-horse of the Guard first undertook 
this service, but they were easily repulsed. The cuirassiers followed 
next, but the Hungarian grenadiers formed squares around the guns, and 
by their sustained volleys of musketry, stretched nearly one half of those 
terrible cavaliers on the plain 

The attack on Essling, though not less bloody than the battle in the 
other parts of the field, was more successfully resisted, and at nightfall 
the village remained in possession of the French troops. 

The night was consumed in the most strenuous efforts on both sides to 
repair their losses, by bringing forward reinforcements ; and as soon as 
the first gray of the summer's dawn shed a doubtful light over the field 
on the 22nd, the Austrian columns under Rosenberg renewed the attack 
on Essling, and at the same time, Massena came forward in force to 
reconquer Aspern. Both assaults were attended with varied success. 
Aspern yielded to the impetuosity of Massena's charge, while the Arch- 
duke's grenadiers carried Essling at the point of the bayonet, and forced 
the enemy back almost to the banks of the Danube. The battle ra^ed 
with the utmost fury during the whole day ; Essling was at length retaken 
by the French, and Aspern, after having been captured and recaptured 
three several times, remained in the hands of the Austrians. 

In the meantime Napoleon, resolved to bring this murderous contest to 
a conclusion, ordered an attack on the Austrian centre in the plain of 
Marchfield. The whole corps of Lannes and Oudinot, together with the 
cuirassiers and the Imperial Guard in reserve, moved forward in echelon, 
preceded by a powerful train of artillery, and fell with irresistible weight 
on the Austrian line. The dense columns of Lannes pressed through the 
ranks of their opponents and threw some battalions into confusion, while 
the cuirassiers, rushing on with loud shouts, threatened to disorder the 
whole Imperialist army. But at this critical moment, the Archduke 
proved himself equal to the emergency. He directed the reserve gren- 
adiers, under the prince of Reuss, to be formed in squares, and the 
dragoons of Lichtenstein to take post behind them; and then, seizing 
with his own hand the standard of Zach's corps, which was beginning to 
falter, he addressed a few energetic words to the men and led them back 
to the charge. The soldiers, thus reanimated, held their ground ; the 
column of Lannes was arrested, and the squares among which it had pen- 
etrated, poured in upon it destructive volleys from all sides, while the 
Austrian batteries, playing at half musket shot, caused a frightful carnage 
in the deep masses of the French troops. The cuirassiers made desperate 
efforts to retrieve the day, but their squadrons were decimated by mus- 
ketry, and at length driven off the field by an impetuous charge of 
Liechtenstein's dragoons. 


Hohenzollern now rushed forward, and with a powerful division as- 
sailed the flank of the French columns, which, wholly unable to resist 
this fresh attack, fell backward in the direction of Essling: at the same 
time, intelligence spread through the ranks of both armies, that the flo- 
tilla directed against the bridge had destroyed that portion of it which 
connected the island of Lobau with the southern bank of the river, thus 
cutting off the French army from its supplies and reserves. At this 
terrible crisis, Napoleon's courage did not forsake him. He immediately 
ordered a retreat over the remainder of the bridge, reaching from the 
northern bank to Lobau, and pushed forward the troops that had been 
least engaged to hold the Austrians in check during this perilous manoeu- 
vre. As the French now fought not to conquer, but to escape their 
enemies, the Archduke was enabled to turn his advantages of position to 
the best account, and press, with his whole reserve, on the retiring and 
discouraged columns of Napoleon. He brought forward all his artillery, 
and, by disposing the guns in a semicircular line, concentrated their iron 
storm on the narrow line of retreat, so that the slaughter became terrific ; 
and, at th