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vited quite by mistake. Our military attacbe, who had been absent from Berlin, returned on the following day, and when l told him of the King's dinner party, he said, "How the deuce came you to be there? No one under the rank of a field officer is ever invited to the small dinners." On inquiry it was found that as, being attached to a general, l had "A.D.C." on my cards, it was supposed that l must be an A.D.C. to the Queen (necessarily a full colonel), and l had come in for the attention only paid to that superior rank. Certainly the mistake was a lucky one for me, and l could only trust that l had sustained my fictitious character with sufficient propriety.
For three successive days the English visitors attended the manoeuvres of the Guard Corps near Berlin, and saturated themselves with ideas which had originally sprung from the brains of Von Moltke and Von Roon. The sight that perhaps has dwelt more distinctly in my memory than any other was the march past of the Grenadiers, with the small son of the Crown Prince (now the Kaiser) at the head of the leading company, and much put to it to keep the pace and step of the tall Pomeranians. l do not know whether he, as Kaiser, still maintains the picturesque custom of his grandfather, inside whose palace the guards and sentries all were equipped in the uniform of Frederick the Great's time. The only mark of the nineteenth century was that they carried the needle-gun instead of the old musket with the famous iron ramrod, which was so effective during the Seven Years' War.
l have said that l was an A.D.C. to a general officer when l visited Berlin, and an A.D.C. l remained for a few years. Now, there are two kinds of A.D.C.s. There is the domestic variety, which finds itself as much at the beck and call of the General's wife and daughters for social purposes as it is
employed by the General himself on purely military business. l have heard it whispered that the prospects of a young officer in the Service may be as much benefited by zeal and efficiency in performing the duties of a domestic A.D.C. as by showing intelligence and energy in the tented field. Generals whose personal reputation as soldiers is on the highest level, and whose good word is all-powerful, may be very much under home influence, and may be pushed to see special qualifications for military advancement in the cherished "tame cats" of their drawing-rooms. Cherohe: Uz femme may probably still be said in looking for the beginnings of some successful careers in the British Army. Except on active service, when an A.D.C. is necessarily the organizing spirit of his General's headquarters. l am thankful to say that my experience of the duties of personal Staff was strictly confined to work in the field and at the desk, and in it l always found very full and interesting employment . l may here mention a domestic problem that once presented itself to me while serving on a distant expedition. A message arrived that a kind naval officer had presented a turtle to my General, and l was told that it had been landed and was lying on the beach. The household at my disposition consisted of a European orderly, a black man who most unjustifiably called himself a cook, and two nondescript colored boys, our personal attendants. Accompanied by these l went to the beach, and there, gasping on the shingle, l found an enormous monster over six feet long, lying helpless on its mighty carapace, and seemingly impervious to anything less shattering than dynamite. There was the material for gallons of soup and yards of steaks, but how was it to be utilized? The orderly had "never seen one of them beasts before," and the cook, equally ignorant, bad no suggestion to make. i ask the question of any highly cultivated modern Staff officer. What should have been done? Frankly, l gave it up, and l believe that, after a long toil with a hatchet, the poor brute's head was cut off, and some of its body was removed for the pot. l draw a veil over the memory of the dish that afterwards appeared at our table. lt certainly had no resemblance to either turtle soup or turtle steaks.
The annual inspections of regiments in old times were very amusing in themselves, and brought the General's A.D.C. in contact with numberless good fellows in every rank of the Service, all of whom were pleasant acquaintances, and some became intimate and dear friends. To think only of the rank-and-file. ln after-years, men who had been soldiers turned up in many different places and showed their kindly memories by the most friendly attentions. A gold-laced porter at a restaurant would depart from his dignity and rush to give his personal service. A butler at a country house would by no means allow the officer whom he recognized to be valeted by the first or second footman, but himself attended to the visitor on the chance of a word or two about the time when the old —th lay at Hounslow. The police force was full of old soldiers, who would stop the traffic in a crowded street for the passage of an old friend. l remember, too, being once the victim of an assault at Epsom and grappling with my assailant. l yelled "Police!" and a mounted constable quickly came to my assistance, followed by a couple of plain-clothes men. After l had charged my man at the office in the Grand Stand, and the case was arranged for the next Petty Sessions, my police allies all introduced themselves as men who knew me well while they were serving in various corps, and expressed their delight in
being at hand "when there were a lot of rough customers about who were looking nasty."
The idiosyncrasies of inspecting generals were always of much interest, and, previous to an inspection, even the most swagger colonels often condescended to pump the A.D.C. as to the points to which the General was likely to pay particular attention. As 1 have told, General Lawrenson looked for equitation, another General would absolutely revel in checking the books and records in the regimental office, a third was an expert in saddlery, while a fourth would not admit that a corps was in proper order unless the barrack rooms were scoured, polished, and whitewashed like dairies Even what were called the "inspection lunches" were often carefully considered, so that the General might perchance be mollified by the entertainment that was offered to him. A story was told of the Duke of Cambridge when he was making a certain tour of inspection. On the table of the first corps that he visited was a dish of homely pork chops, of which H.R.H. partook with approval. The tip was sent on that pork chops were food such as the Commander-in-Chief loved. At his next inspection lunch, therefore, pork chops were duly provided, and again they were appreciated. But when, for the third or fourth time, pork chops appeared as the leading feature of a military .in nit. it is said that the remark burst forth, "Good God! am l never to see anything but pork chops?"
An inspection of Household Cavalry was always one of the pleasantest duties of the year. Then, as always before and since, the Life Guards and Blues were in tenue, in conduct, in drill, and in all interior economy second to none and equalled by very few of the English cavalry regiments. There was little chance, therefore, of any faultfinding to mar the serenity of temper on all sides. Generally also some people of light and leading made a point of taking the opportunity to look at a corps in which they had possibly served themselves or had some relations serving so the inspection became a small social function. How magnificent was a charge of these corsleted men-at-arms! The horsemanship and rapid accuracy of movement that they showed were of the highest order, and certainry could not then be equalled by any Continental cavalry. l am reminded of this particularly, because l attended some French cavalry manoeuvres immediately after being present at a Life Guards' inspection. The great feature of the last day of the French manoeuvres was to be a grand charge of Cuirassiers, and it was eagerly awaited. When it came, however, l at least was terribly disappointed. Good as their horses were, the "Gros Freres" never allowed them to be extended beyond a common canter, and, even so, the plain was strewn with men who had lost their saddles. The French Staff were, however, apparently perfectly satisfied with the performance, and one of them said to me with pride, "Maintenant, Monsieur, vous pouvez dire que vous avez vu une charge de Cuirassiers."
l don't know whether it is true that modern generals have not the same prestige as their predecessors in my young days, when they were very aweinspiring personages before whom everybody quailed. A story was current in my old regiment about Lord Cardigan when he was lnspector-General of Cavalry. lf any man ever as
Tiu- Oomhlll Magazine.
serted the dignity and importance of his position, he did, and one unfortunate sergeant, to whom he somewhat brusquely addressed a question, was so dumbfounded that he could hardly articulate. The Colonel tried to shield him, and hoped that his Lordship would excuse the man, as he was rather nervous. "Good God!" replied Cardigan, "who ever heard of a nervous hussar?" Curiously enough, it was often the case that men, who had shown over and over again that they were full of pluck, quite lost their beads when they suddenly found themselves confronted with a live general, particularly if he was a little peremptory. They did not perhaps generally carry their deference for high rank quite so far as the sternly drilled Russians in the Crimean war, who, when one of the Allied Generals blundered into their lines, were so taken aback by the apparition that, instead of securing him as a prisoner, they at once presented arms. lt may possibly be well in some ways, if it is the case that the non-commissioned officers and privates of to-day have not the same blind reverence for the heads of the military hierarchy as had their predecessors, but there is no doubt that, on occasions without number in our history, the most marvellous deeds have been accomplished by the command and leading of a general, simply because in the eyes of the rank-and-file he was so tremendous an individual that he must be implicity and unhesitatingly obeyed.
l dare say l have been garrulous enough for the present.
A CRIMINAL CASE.
Murdo, the son of the Catechist, was taking home the cows on a summer evening. His mind was disturbed, and his anger was a good deal roused, because of a dispute on Church questions he had just been having with a man on the road. in particular, he was roused against his two neighbors, Alastair Mackenzie and Neil Maclean, and against Neil's brother, the shoemaker. Not only bad these men left the minister and set up a tabernacle of their own, sacred to pure doctrine, but they had such a large following in the parish that they contrived to make things very unpleasant for those who, like Murdo, preferred the ministrations of the old minister to the Sabbath homilies of the shoemaker,—for he it was who generally officiated in the building most recently dedicated to dissent.
Now Murdo, being the son of the catechist,—a notable good man,—was one the new party would fain have counted among their number. True, he was a simple man, without sharpness or ability, and he was an oldish man, and on occasions like the New Year he was apt to partake over freely of spirits; yet despite these drawbacks and although his father, the good catechist , had been twenty years in his grave, he had the name, and belonged to a country where to be the son of a good man is to have a certain position. Popular feeling then was against him, because he had not been as zealous for certain ecclesiastical formulas called "Principles" as had been expected of him.
The clear light of the summer evening was melting into dusk as Murdo and the cows left the highroad and made their slow way over a rough newly-made path that, when completed, was to lead past Murdo's house and
down through the township of Brae to the sea. The red cow and the black cow and the little brown calf seemed in the half-light all one vague dark color, akin to the clumps of birch bushes here and there, or to the patches of heather that broke up the cultivated ground. Murdo felt the soil and gravel of the newly-made road difficult to walk on. He did not feel kindly towards the road, perhaps because the men who had the contract for it were those two neighbors of his —Alastair Mackenzie and Neil Maclean—with whom he was so much at variance. He could not leave his bouse in these days without meeting the two, carting and gravelling, breaking down and building up, and when they met they never failed to have sharp words with one another.
Murdo burned with indignation to think of what the man on the road had been telling him, which was nothing less than that the minister was to be turned off the school board at the next election. The people who were against him in the place were strong enough, the umu had said boastingly, to put in one of their own number instead of him. Murdo breathed a Gaelic remark that was not particularly suitable to a church dispute. Had not the minister served the people on the school board since these people were themselves children at school?
Murdo was so taken up with the thought of all this that he almost overbalanced himself, and narrowly escaped falling into the burn that, through a narrow rocky channel, rippled down to the sea near his own house. He stood still and glared at it. Here was cause for anger indeed! Alastalr and Neil had removed the rough bridge over which he and the cows had been wont to go,—they had done that since he left home in the afternoon. The poor dumb beasts were cropping the grass beside the path and Availing for something to be done. Mt i.hrs thoughts and ejaculations were somewhat violent . It is perhaps best not to record them.
lt was true that the little old bridge bad to come down sometime, since the new road was to be built over the burn, but what Murdo took as a piece of personal malice was that the bridge had been removed in the evening, without any warning having been given him, and that nothing in the way of a temporary make-shift had been put in its place.
He was now forced to make one himself, and he bethought him at the moment of a large piece of old wood with which Alastair and Neil bad made a way across a drain for their wheelbarrow. lt was about half the size of a barn door, and would bridge the gap very well . He went back along the road till he found it; then he raised it and dragged it along to the burn, saying to himself that at all events Alastair and Nell would not "have the face" to remove it in the morning without putting some other temporary arrangement in its stead. The device succeeded very well, and Murdo drove the cows across it, put them into the byre, and went in to his supper.
Next day no one came to work at the road. The men who had the contract were both too busy with their harvest work to attend to anything else, and for two or three weeks the son of the catechist saw nothing of them, but drove his cows in peace over the temporary bridge he had made. Then one evening he came home with the thought in his mind that the people he had met that day had behaved strangely to him. He could not tell what it was, but he felt there was something peculiar about them. When he came in his sister was cry
ing. She was in such grief that he could not find out from her what was the matter; but presently his eye fell upon a strange-looking paper lying upon the meal-chest. He lifted it, and being a poor scholar he took some little time to find out what was in it .
When at last he deciphered it, it made him tremble all over, for it was a summons requiring him to appear on a certain day at the court at Aldarn, on the criminal charge of having stolen a piece of wood from Alastair Mackenzie and Nell Maclean.
His sister began sobbing out loud. "Oh, Murdo, Murdo!" said she. "To think that the name of thief would be attached to one of the children of our father!"
Murdo sat on the meal-chest and stared at the summons. He was slowwitted, and at first he did not grasp the thing very well. Presently, however, the blood mounted to his forehead. He clenched his fist and brought it down full force upon the table in front of him.
"This is the work of the followers of the shoemaker," said he in a loud voice. He sat on the meal-chest all the evening thinking what was to be done, and the more he thought the more he saw the terrible position he was in. Whatever might be said of the men who brought him into it, he saw at once that there was a weak point in his own case. He had taken the wood,—it was impossible to deny that. lf Alastair and Nell, who had been to school with him fifty years before, who had been his neighbors all their days, and ceilidhed1 at his fireside,—if they chose to put an unfriendly construction on his simple action, what defence could he make? How would the sheriff look at it? lf he—Murdo—were to explain that he required the wood, and that he couldn't very well get home the cows
'From a Gaelic word pronounced bailie, meaning a friendly visit.