- Software name: appdown
- Software type: Microsoft Framwork
- size: 613MB
Landor came in a few weeks later. He had had an indecisive skirmish in New Mexico with certain bucks who had incurred the displeasure of the paternal government by killing and eating their horses, to the glory of their gods and ancestors, and thereafter working off their enthusiasm by a few excursions beyond the confines of the reservation, with intent to murder and destroy.
Mr. Morgan O'Connell soon found that he had no sinecure in undertaking to give satisfaction with the pistol for all his father's violations of the code of honour. Shortly after, Mr. Daniel O'Connell referred, in strong language, to an attack made upon him by Mr. Disraeli at Taunton:"In the annals of political turpitude, there is not anything deserving the appellation of black-guardism to equal that attack upon me.... He possesses just the qualities of the impenitent thief who died upon the Cross; whose name, I verily believe, must have been Disraeli. For aught I know, the present Disraeli is descended from him; and with the impression that he is, I now forgive the heir-at-law of the blasphemous thief who died upon the Cross." When Mr. Disraeli read this tremendous philippic, he wrote to Mr. Morgan O'Connell for satisfaction, which the latter denied his right to demand. He had not seen the attack, nor was he answerable for his father's words, though he had taken up his quarrel with Lord Alvanley. Not being able to get satisfaction by means of pistols, he had recourse to the pen; and, certainly, if O'Connell's attack was violent, the retaliation was not of the meekest. However, ink alone was spilt.
But this prosperity lay only on the surface, and scarcely even there or anywhere but in the pride and lying assertions of Buonaparte. If we contemplate merely the map of Europe, the mighty expanse of the French empire seemed to occupy nearly the whole of it, and to offer an awful spectacle of one man's power. This empire, so rapidly erected, had absorbed Holland, Belgium, part of Switzerlandfor the Valais was united to France,a considerable part of Germany, with Austria and Prussia diminished and trembling at the haughty usurper. Italy was also made part of the great French realm, and a fierce struggle was going on for the incorporation of Spain and Portugal. From Travemünde on the Baltic to the foot of the Pyrenees, from the port of Brest to Terracina on the confines of Neapolitan territory, north and south, east and west, extended this gigantic empire. Eight hundred thousand square miles, containing eighty-five millions of people, were either the direct subjects or the vassals of France. The survey was enough to inflate the pride of the conqueror, who had begun his wonderful career as a lieutenant of artillery. But this vast dominion had been compacted by too much violence, and in outrage to too many human interests, to remain united, or to possess real strength, even for the present. The elements of dissolution were already actively at work in it. The enormous drafts of men to supply the wars by which the empire had been created had terribly exhausted France. This drain, still kept up by the obstinate resistance of Spain and Portugal, necessitated conscription on conscription, and this on the most enormous scale. The young men were annually dragged from the towns, villages, and fields, from amid their weeping and despairing relatives, to recruit the profuse destruction in the armies, and there scarcely remained, all over France, any but mere boys to continue the trade and agriculture of the country, assisted by old men, and women. Beyond the boundaries of France, the populations of subdued and insulted nations were watching for the opportunity to rise and resume their rights. In Germany they were encouraging each other to prepare for the day of retribution; and in numerous places along the coasts bands of smugglers kept up a continual warfare with the French officers of the customs, to introduce British manufactures. The contributions which had been levied in Holland and the Hanse Towns before they were incorporated in the Gallic empire were now not readily collected in the shape of taxes. Beyond the Continent ceased the power of Napoleon; over all seas and colonies reigned his invincible enemy, Great Britain. There was scarcely a spot the wide world over where the French flag, or those of the nations whom he had crushed into an odious alliance, waved on which Great Britain had not now planted her colours. She cut off all colonial supplies, except what she secretly sold to his subjects in defiance of his system. She was now victoriously bearing up his enemies in Spain, Portugal, and Sicily against him, and encouraging Russia, Sweden, Prussia, and Austria to expect the day of his final overthrow. There was scarcely a man of any penetration who expected that this vast and unwieldy government could continue to exist a single day after him who had compelled it into union, rather than life; but, perhaps, none suspected how suddenly it would collapse. Yet the very birth of a son was rather calculated to undermine than to perpetuate it. His great generals, who had risen as he had risen, were suspected of looking forward, like those of Alexander of Macedon, to each seizing a kingdom for himself when the chief marauder should fall. It was certain that they had long been at enmity amongst themselvesa cause of weakness to his military operations, which was especially marked in Spain.
The troops of the Convention were equally successful against Lyons. It was speedily invested by numerous troops, under the command of Dubois-Cranc, one of the Commissioners of the Convention. On the 21st of August he summoned the place to surrender, but the Lyonese held out till the 2nd of October, when Couthon, one of the most ruthless of the Jacobin deputies, arrived, with twenty-eight thousand armed peasants, from Auvergne. He demanded that the city should be instantly bombarded, and, if necessary, reduced to ruins. Dubois-Cranc said there was no need for this merciless alternative, as the place must very soon yield from famine. Couthon thereupon obtained an order from the Convention to supersede Dubois-Cranc, as devoid of proper Republican zeal; and on the 7th of October commenced a terrible bombardment. The inhabitants came to a parley with Couthon, and agreed to surrender without conditions. Couthon immediately appointed a committee to try all rebels, and he sent his opinion of the population at large to the Convention, describing the people as of three kindsthe wicked rich, the proud rich, and the ignorant poor, who were too stupid to be good Republicans. He proposed to guillotine the first class, to seize the property of the second, and to remove the last into different quarters of France. The Convention adopted his views cordially, and passed a decree that Lyons should be destroyed; that nothing should be left but the houses of the poor, the manufactories, the hospitals, the school of arts, the public schools, and public monuments; that the name of Lyons should be buried for ever, and that on its ruins should be erected a monument bearing this inscription:"Lyons made war against liberty: Lyons is no more!" The name of the spot ever afterwards was to be the Liberated Commune. The massacres were carried out by Collot d'Herbois.
Soult, indeed, had sixty thousand men and ninety-one guns to deal with the flying and now greatly disorganised army of the British. At first the retreat had been made with much discipline and order, but the miserable weather, the torrents of rain, and heavy falls of snow, the roads rough with rocks, or deep with mud, tried the patience of the men. So long as they were advancing towards the enemy they could bear all this with cheerfulness, but the British are never good-humoured or patient under retreat. Sullen and murmuring, they struggled along in the retreat, suffering not only from the weather, but from want of provisions, and the disgraceful indifference of the people to those who had come to fight their battles. Whenever a halt was made, and an order given to turn and charge the enemy, they instantly cheered up, forgot all their troubles, and were full of life and spirit. But their gloom returned with the retreat; and, not being voluntarily aided by the Spaniards, they broke the ranks, and helped themselves to food and wine wherever they could find them. Such was now the state of the weather and the roads, that many of the sick, and the women and children, who, in spite of orders, had been allowed to follow the army, perished. The French pressed more and more fiercely on the rear of the British, and several times Sir John was compelled to stop and repel them. On one of these occasions the French general, Colbert, was killed, and the six or eight squadrons of horse led by him were, for the most part, cut to pieces. At Lugo, on the 5th of January, Sir E. Paget beat back a very superior force. Again, on the 7th, Sir John Moore halted, and repulsed the advanced line of Soult, killing four or five hundred of the French. The next morning the armies met again in line of battle, but Soult did not attack; and as soon as it was dark Sir John quietly pursued his march, leaving his fires burning to deceive the enemy.
It was the signal to the woman in that other room behind the locked door, and above all the demoniacal sounds it reached her. Only an instant she hesitated, until that door, too, began to give. Then a cold muzzle of steel found, in the darkness, two little struggling, dodging facesand left them marred. And once again the trigger was unflinchingly pulled, as greedy arms reached out to catch the white, woman's figure that staggered and fell.