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poleon. The main force of the Allies continuing, however, to follow Soult, first drove him from an advantageous post at Aire, then from a strong position behind the town of Tarbes, and forced him finally to fall back upon Toulouse.

The British general bad now rapidly extended the authority or the influence of the allied army over the whole of the country from the Pyrenees to the river Garonne; with the exception only of the strong places of Bayonne, St. Jean-pied-de-port, and Navarreins; and these also were closely blockaded by his troops. But, to render the diversion in favour of the northern armies yet more effective, he determined to dislodge the enemy from the city, and the military position of Toulouse likewise. This enterprise was attended with great difficulty; first, from its being necessary to separate the allied army into two parts, in order to enable it to act on both sides of the Garonne, whilst the enemy retained his whole force perfectly united by means of the bridge of Toulouse; secondly, because the passage of the river by the part of the allied army destined to operate on its right bank, had to be effected in sight of, and within reach of the enemy; and thirdly, because the French troops occupied, on the right bank, and in immediate connexion with the city of Toulouse, a position of very great natural strength, extremely difficult of approach, and to which Marshal Soult was daily adding new works. But these difficulties were all overcome; another brilliant victory was achieved; and the dislodgement of the enemy from an almostunassailable military position, and the occupation of the important city of Toulouse by the Allies, afforded at once an evidence of the extraordinary talents and enterprising spirit of the British general; and established a distinct mark of the progress which had been made by his arms, when their further advance was rendered superfluous by the abdication of Napoleon, and the consequent termination of the war.

Lord Wellington's despatches, from the time of his entering France, bear ample testimony to the moderation and judgment which governed all his proceedings in that country. His proclamations--his letters to the Duc d'Angoulême—and his communications with the civil functionaries of the country-all bear evidence to his rigid adherence to the principle of not interfering with the political sentiments of the French people; and numerous cautions are given to them, not indiscreetly to precipitate the expression of their feelings, whilst the uncertain state of military and of diplomatic proceedings might possibly render such declarations afterwards injurious to their own interests. Yet the temptation to urge the population of the south of France to a de

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claration against Napoleon, seems to have been very great ; for, writing to Lord Liverpool on the 4th of March, Lord Wellington says,

• In proportion as we advance, I find the sentiment in the country still more strong against the Bonaparte dynasty, and in favour of the Bourbons; but I am quite certain there will be no declaration on the part of the people, if the Allies do not in some manner declare themselves, or, at all events, as long as they are negotiating with Bonaparte.

Any declaration from us would, I am convinced, raise such a flame in the country as would soon spread from one end of it to the other, and would infallibly overturn him.'—Vol. xi. pp. 546-7.

Lord Wellington seems to have employed, also, all bis energy and vigilance to prevent outrages or irregularities on the part of any of the troops under his command. The Spaniards had many injuries and insults to avenge; but the slightest indication of a spirit of retaliation on their part was rigorously repressed; and it is but justice to their commander, General Freyre, to mention, that he also, from the moment of his obtaining the command, was indefatigable, as well in improving his troops in every thing pertaining to their military duties, as in establishing and confirming habits of regularity and of good conduct amongst them.

The dethronement of Napoleon, and the re-establishment of peace in Europe, seemed likely to suspend, for a time, the exercise of those extraordinary abilities and energies by which the Duke of Wellington had contributed so largely to bring about these events. The reverse of this, however, occurred; and a new and wider field was speedily opened, in which his political sagacity, and consummate military skill, displayed themselves in a manner more conspicuous even than they had heretofore done. The dissolution of the army with which he had overrun the south of France, took place with the promptitude observable in all his military measures ; and the instructions issued for the purpose (vol. xii. pp. 10 and 13), are characterised by his usual methodical arrangement, and simplicity and precision of style. But whilst the troops of the several nations wbich bad composed the allied army were put in motion towards their several destinations, their general was called upon, first, to assist at the diplomatic conferences holding at Paris ; and next, to make a rapid journey to the capital of Spain.

• I propose,' says he, in a letter from Paris to Lord Liverpool, written on the 9th of May, to go to Madrid, in order to try whether I cannot prevail upon all parties to be more moderate, and to adopt a constitution more likely to be practicable, and to contribute to the peace and happiness of the nation.'— Vol. xjj. p. 4.

Writing from Toulouse on the 14th, to Sir Henry Wellesley, he

says :

• Lord Castlereagh communicated to me your despatches to the 24th, and appeared to think that it was absolutely necessary 1 should lose no time in getting to Madrid. God send that I may be in time to prevent mischief!'

And he addressed the following letter from the same place on the 15th May, to Lord Castlereagh :

I arrived here on the day before yesterday, and shall set out on the day after to-morrow for Madrid. Things are getting on very fast, and the army bave already taken different sides; O'Donnell and Elió for the King, the former having issued a very violent declaration; and Freyre and the Principe de Anglona for the Constitution. I think, however, i can keep them both quiet. I shall be at Madrid about the 22d. The King was expected to leave Valencia on the 5th, and to arrive at Madrid on the 12th.-Vol. xii. pp. 17, 18.

The prudence with which he conducted himself in this very critical juncture of Spanish affairs, appears by his letters of the 21st of May to the Minister of War, and to the Duke of San Carlos; and the complete success which attended his journey in obviating the immediate outbreak of civil war, together with the important and judicious nature of his counsels, render the letters and other documents written during his short stay at Madrid extremely interesting. Unfortunately, however, for that country, the influence of the leader who had so successfully aided the efforts of its high-minded people to achieve their national independence, was too weak to effect the ameliorations so much needed in their political institutions; and to guide their government towards a temperate and enlightened course of policy, either domestic or foreign. Perhaps, indeed, it was the same under-current, powerful for good when flowing in the right course, but strong also for evil when misdirected, which, having formerly moved the passions and the prejudices of the people onward against a foreign invader, now unhappily held them back from improvements for which a favourable opportunity had presented itself. But however that may be, it must have been deeply distressing to a man gifted with a clear and powerful understanding, habituated to a frank and straightforward line of conduct, and actuated by sentiments the most friendly towards the Spanish nation, to find his best endeavours thrown away upon a court which repaid them—with plausible professions, it is true, and with personal civilities—but which was too unenlightened, too inefficient, or too insincere, to avail itself of them to any useful purpose.

On returning from Madrid, he issued a general order at Bordeaux, taking leave of the British troops which had served under him in the Peninsula; and then proceeded through Paris to England. Colonel Gurwood bas very properly introduced into this part of his compilation, a brief account of the reception given to the Duke on his return to his own country; after having raised himself, in little more than five years, from the position of a private man to the most elevated rank, and to the highest situations which his sovereign and his country could bestow upon him.

The appointment of ambassador to the court of France, now allotted to Lord Wellington, caused him, however, to leave England again in the month of August. He took his way through the Low Countries; and a letter to Earl Bathurst (vol. xii. p. 123), accompanied by a memorandum on the defence of the frontiers

of the Netherlands,' indicates one of the motives for his having taken that route. It is not undeserving of notice, that in this very able memorandum, one of the points adverted to as being of special military importance to the defence of Brabant, is

the entrance of the forêt de Soignies, by the high-road which leads to Brussels from Binch, Charleroi, and Namur;' the very place where the fate of Bonaparte was finally determined, a few months afterwards, in the battle of Waterloo.

A letter to Lord Castlereagh, dated on the 18th of August, affords an evidence of the good sense, moderation, and knowledge of human nature, which form such marked features in the Duke of Wellington's character. He clearly saw of how much importance it was in the then “situation of affairs in the world,' that England and France should perfectly understand each other; but he deemed it necessary, nevertheless, to caution Lord Castlereagh as to the expediency of endeavouring to modify the offensive tone of vanity and presumption with which the leading diplomatists of France seemed disposed to announce the two powers as 'arbitrators' of all differences that might arise at the approaching Congress.

The despatches written during the Duke's mission at Paris, refer to several topics of importance; and afford considerable insight into the state of France, and into the causes of the extraordinary events wbich soon afterwards occurred. These despatches, also, afford abundant evidence of his assiduity and acuteness in business; and of his vigilant attention to the rights, interests, and feelings of his countrymen--accompanied, however, by a fair and just consideration for those of other nations. Lord Castlereagh's unavoidable return to attend Parliament, led to his being replaced at the Congress of Vienna by the Duke, wbo left Paris for that purpose on the 24th of January 1815. But little more than a month elapsed, however, from the time of his joining the Congress, when a despatch from Lord Burghersh brought to him the intelligence, that Bonaparte had quitted the island of Elba, with all his civil and military

officers, and about 1200 troops.' This event gave at once a more military character to the proceedings of the Congress; and, accordingly, in the despatches to Lord Castlereagh, we read of resolutions unanimously agreed upon, vigorously to support the King of France, and we have statements of the amount of the armies proposed to be formed for that purpose. After mentioning the intended composition of the army destined to act on the Lower Rhine, the Duke says, “Of this corps they wish me to take the command." He then proceeds as follows:

• The Emperor of Russia seems reconciled to the notion of the old system of managing the great concern in a council, consisting of himself, the King of Prussia, and Schwartzenberg. He expressed a wish that I should be with him, but not a very strong one; and, as I should have neither character nor occupation in such a situation, I should prefer to carry a musket.'

From the first part of the above extract, an inference may perhaps be drawn, that the Emperor of Russia was reconciled to the old system, in consequence only of finding it impracticable to obtain for himself the sole direction. The latter part of the passage is strongly indicative of the spirit of independence, and force of character, which belong to the Duke. "The situation allotted for him by the general voice of the Allied Powers, was certainly far more suitable for him than that of being an attaché to even an Emperor's headquarters; and it enabled him to act probably with much more efficiency for the common interest of the alliance. A letter to Lord Castlereagh, of the 18th of March, begins as follows:

You will see in both the protocols of the military conferences, enclosed in my despatch, No. 14, of this date, the desire expressed by the Allied Powers that I should proceed to the Netherlands to take the command of the troops in that country, and particularly in the last, that I should lose no time.'

He quitted Vienna, accordingly, on the 29th of March, and reached Brussels on the 4th of April. He wrote next day to the general (Gneisenau) who then commanded the corps of Prussian troops on the Maese; urging the expediency of their being prepared jointly to maintain a position in front of Brussels, in place of falling back towards Tirlemont and St Tron, in the event of a sudden advance of the Frencb; as would seem to have

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