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General was fairly haunted by Old Nick. Our fair author touches on the same subject, in a strain somewhat similar. On one occasion, she went to visit a lady who resided in one of the monster lodging-houses of St. Petersburgh, where hundreds, and sometimes thousands of persons dwell under one roof. Here she was shown into a waiting-room, the walls of which were completely covered with the portraits of Nicholas; and on the table was an ornamental stand, representing the Emperor in five different uniforms, while a sixth portrait, screened by a veil, exhibited him dead. The wicked had ceased jfrom troubling, but the unquiet phantom could not rest.
Miss Bunbury made an excursion to Sweaborg. The fortress, it would seem, is guarded as carefully against ladies as against sailors, but what the allied squadron could not manage, was accomplished by our fair author and her companions, and they fairly took Sweaborg by storm. As a work of defence, the fort appears to be very defective; and the Russians confessed to Miss Bunbury that it was hardly in a tenable condition at the commencement of the late war. However that may be, one of our author's Finnish friends, a certain Mamsell Malvina
M , undertook to introduce her into the citadel, and carry her
over its works. The party alighted from their boats on a flight of stone steps, leading to the house of the commandant, and after some delay, were questioned by an invisible sentinel as to their object, and called up to a corridor above, where the intrepid Mamsell astonished her friends by declaring she had come to see the Commandant. Bolts and bars were now withdrawn, gates thrown open, fresh sentinels encountered and answered, and the magic words of Mamsell Malvina, satisfying both officer and warder, threw down every barrier, and on they all went, some by no means sharing the confidence of their fair leader. But let us come to the issue of the adventure:—
"Thus were we slowly, but steadily advancing: all the outworks had been carried by our undaunted leader, and to follow with due caution was our only duty. In short, a minute or two placed us in view of the great general himself, standing with some of his ' staff' around him, and our own little leader sitting just before him. I wondered at her courage. He is of fierce visage, that commandant, with restless, wild expression, that might well keep at bay the stoutest of our admirals, let alone an unprotected female; indeed, limited as my own knowledge is, I know personally only one of our hearts of oak who has a decided fancy for encountering such a style of physiognomy.
"As for the figure, it was in full uniform, breast covered over with decorations and medals, that were almost as fearful to encounter as the physiognomy; and seated demurely in a chair, fully confronting all, was our dear little Mamsell Malvina, our gallant leader, with looks so demure and eyes so straightforward-looking, while the fiercely-visaged, restless-eyed commandant of Sweaborg stood before her with an air of no little perplexity; the allied fleet, I suspect, never perplexed him as much.
"Mamsell Malvina had come to see him—that position was clear; might he inquire what was the object of her visit?"She wished to see Sweaborg.
"Mamsell was in Sweaborg. She could retire when she pleased.
"Mamsell wished to inspect the works. She could not do so without the good commandant's order.
"What possible purpose might Mamsell have in inspecting the fortifications? Did she, perchance, wish to make some descriptions?
"Mamsell Malvina was not in the habit of making descriptions, and did not in the least understand fortification.
"Where, then, was the utility of viewing the fortress? "That Mamsell Malvina could not at all say—it was a fancy of hers; she had a wish to do so; and she knew the good commandant could enable her to do so better than anyone else. Just at the moment the officer of engineers, with his plans, stepped from the antechamber into that where the discussion was carried on. The restless eye of the commandant grew a thousandfold more restless; it was plain that his whole soul—his heart at least—was in those plans. He gave a hasty order; it was as hastily obeyed. A tall, thin, young officer appeared, as if moved in by wires, at the door, and stood passively there. "Take charge of this lady round the fortress."
Talking of uniforms, we had almost forgotten to say that the system extends to the houses. At Moscow, our author visited the factories, which, like everything from which money can be squeezed, are in the hands of the Czar, and found them all in regimentals—the factories themselves being white, the house of the overseer red, and the huts of the work-people green. Use is second nature, or we should imagine that even Russian serfs must consider this military fever to be carried to excess. More than half the population are in the condition of serfs, and are bought and sold with the land as if they were so much timber. Nicholas, who was always seeking to aggrandise the crown, and impoverish the nobility, introduced a system of advancing money to distressed landholders, on the security of their property, and by this means acquired immense estates, and a proportionate number of serfs. The latter are nominally emancipated when they fall to the Czar, but their condition is but little improved, and such a change can hardly be looked for as an amelioration. The male peasants are, as a whole, robust and handsome; on the other hand, the women are to be prized solely for their mental graces—which are, of course, irresistible—as in person they are by no means captivating, being described by our author as coming under one of three denominations, namely, plain, ugly, or hideous. Fortunately we are told all this by one of the sex; and as ladies are proverbially severe on each other's personal attractions, we may credit it or not as we please, and, for our part, we are so instinctively gallant that, while we would not for the world discuss the point with our fair author, we conscientiously believe the Eussian ladies to be particularly good-looking.
A Eussian bride has to go through a singular ceremony. The day before the wedding, she is conducted in procession by the young girls of her acquaintance to a public bath, where she is immersed in the water by her companions, who then dance round her singing a lament at their approaching separation. Formerly it was customary to wind up the proceedings by cutting off the lady's hair; but the present generation, wiser than their mothers, attach more value to their tresses, and this little incident is now omitted.
Miss Bunbury made a pilgrimage to the Kremlin, which she describes in picturesque and vivid language, bringing the whole quaint pile sensibly before us. She was also present at the coronation, and, indeed, saw everything which Russia since the war has had to show. Her narrative is graceful and fluent, abounding with light, telling descriptions, gossip, anecdotes, incidents of the road and city, and all that imparts interest to a book of travels. But they who have read her former works will not need to be reminded of the merits of this charming writer. Suffice it, she has contrived, by her admirable tact and perspicuity, to pack into two digestible volumes more information about Russia, her people, and her present condition, than can be found in any other work by an English author; and the whole is communicated in a manner as impressive as attractive. We cordially recommend our readers to lose no time in procuring the book. S. W. F.
THE GUNS AT INKERMANN.
A Great deal has been said relative to the 18-pounders brought up by Colonel Dickson at Inkermann, which played such an important part in the battle; and an attempt has several times been made to connect the incident with Colonel Fitzmayer, in a manner calculated to throw discredit on that officer, as if there had been some neglect or remissness on his part, at a time when everyone else was on the alert. On the revival of this story in the Letters from Head- Quarters, we thought it our duty to state that it had not a shadow of foundation, but was a slanderous imputation on a meritorions officer, who had served from the beginning of the war to its close with honour and distinction; and we could not but express regret that Major Calthorpe had admitted such a statement into his admirable work. It appears that Colonel Fitzmayer wrote to Major Calthorpe on the subject, acquainting him with the real facts; and that officer, with the candour that might be expected from him, has, alter further inquiry, acknowledged that there is no ground whatever for the charge brought against Colonel Fitzmayer, and has expressed his intention of making him full reparation in the next edition of his book. The subject is one of great interest in connexion with a prominent incident of the battle; and as the correspondence has been printed for private circulation, we are enabled to lay it before our readers, giving the gallant colonel's statement in his own words.
FACTS RELATING TO THE 18-POUNDERS AT THE BATTLE OF INKERMANN.
A few months ago a work was published entitled, "The Realities of the late War by a Staff Officer," in which my name was mentioned, and blame imputed to me in connection with the two 18-pounders at the battle of Inkermann. The work was published anonymously, and as I was ignorant, except on very slight report, which might or might not have been correct, who the writer was, I addressed a justification of myself through the columns of the " Times." As the writer of the book subsequently virtually declared himself, by replying publicly to some attacks on his statements by Lord Cardigan and others, and as a second edition of his work, in which my name is still further mentioned, was soon after published, I at once addressed myself to him. In reply, he forwarded to me a copy of a letter he had received from Lieut.Colonel Adye, Assistant Adjutant-General of the Artillery in the Crimea, as his justification. On the receipt of that letter, which I now publish, I wrote to him and acquitted him of all intentional misrepresentation with regard to me in his book. I went further, I made every atonement in my power, as I felt myself bound to do, for anything which might have been annoying to him, that I had ever written on the subject. I forwarded to him at the same time Lieut.Colonel Adye's letter, divided into paragraphs, with my answer opposite to each, as I now give it. He was pleased, in courteous terms, to accept my apology, stating at the same time his intention, if his work came to a third edition, as he expected it would, to make such a statement as he hoped might prove satisfactory to me. Major Calthorpe has thus acquitted himself in a frank and open manner, and repeating my regret at any expression in the least annoying to him, the affair leaves him, and rests between Lieut.-Colonel Adye and myself. When the letter of the latter reached me, I wrote to Lieutenant Arbuthnot, an officer of great accuracy of memory, and particularly guarded in being correct when information is required from him, to give me every detail he might remember regarding the 18-pounders. I also requested Major Calthorpe to refer my statement to him, to Colonels Gambier and Dickson, to enable him to form a more correct opinion, and thewhole of the documents received by me in consequence, and bearing closely on the subject I now publish ; and I leave anyone interested in the matter to form their own opinions of Lieut.-Colonel Adye's statement, and of the good feeling, accuracy, and esprit du corps with which it was written.
J. W. FlTZMAYER, Lieut.-Colonel, Royal Artillery, and Colonel.
Letter From Lieut.-colonel Adye, Royal Artillery, To Major Calthorpe, With My Reply.
Queenstown, Cork, 9th March, 1857. My dear Calthorpe,—1. I have just received your letter, and with respect to the question as to "whether I consider your version of Col. Fitzmayer's conduct at the battle of Inkermann, as described in your book, correct or not?" I beg to state, that, from my knowledge of the circumstances, I consider your account perfectly correct and true.
2. I will enter into details of the subject, which, perhaps, may make the matter clear.
3. The probable reason of Lord Raglan's application in the first in•tance to Col. Fitzmayer to bring up the two 18-pounder guns was, that a few days before the battle of Inkermann, these guns had been handed over to Col. Fitzmayer, who had placed them in the " Sandbag" Battery, and fired them against some Russian guns on the opposite side of the valley, which latter occasionally shelled the 2nd division camp.
4. Before the day of the battle the 18-pounders had been withdrawn from this point, but it was very natural for Lord Raglan to suppose that Col. Fitzmayer might know where they were, and might, if applied to, make some exertion to get them up.
5. I was not with Lord Raglan when the message was sent to him. The answer which was brought back from Col. Fitzmayer was, "that it was impossible."
6. Lord Raglan was much annoyed at receiving such a message, and as I had just joined him he turned round and asked if I considered it impossible. My answer was that there was no difficulty whatever in the matter. He desired me immediately to have them brought up. I was galloping off to do it when Captain Gordon, (Aide-de-Camp to General Strangways,) offered to go for me, and did so.
7. On arriving at the Siege Park, near the Mill, where these guns were, he found that Col. Dickson, perceiving the great use they might be, had packed the ammunition in wagons, and was ready for a move. In fact he (Col. Dickson) had been anxious to go to the front with them before any order came. The 18-pounder guns were not in his charge any more than in Col. Fitzmayer's, but Dickson considered that of no consequence. He collected any men he could find, got some drag-ropes, borrowed a few horses, and away they went under the command of Colonel Gambier, who, however, was wounded almost immediately. The excellent effect produced by their fire is mentioned not only in Lord Raglan's despatches, but Prince Menschikoff assigns, as the cause of his defeat, that the English siege guns were brought against him.
8. When it is remembered that Lord Raglan's urgent message to Col. Fitzmayer was sent in the middle of a great action, and at a most critical moment, few will wonder that the Commander-in-Chief should be annoyed at receiving such a reply, and at finding that no attempt had been made in any way to carry out his wishes.
9. You are at liberty to make use of this letter in any way you may think proper,—I remain, &c,
(Signed) John Adye,
Colonel Fitzmayer's Reply.
[The figures indicate the paragraphs referred to in the foregoing letter from Colonel Adye, bearing the corresponding numbers.]
3. The guns were not handed over to me a "few days " before the battle of Inkermann. I received them on the 21st of October, fifteen days before that action, and they were only thirty-six hours in my charge, as is shown by the accompanying letter from Lieut. Arbuthnot,