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that the successes of that army which is brought into contact with the enemy, and the menacing attitude of the whole preparations, will render it impossible for Bonaparte to venture to break off the negociation.
I most heartily congratulate you on the despatches you were so good as to send under flying seal, and your complete success. The Convention and the Treaty are most important, and reflect the highest honour on you who planned and obtained them. The Treaty cannot fail to give the English satisfaction at home.
The nation will also, I am sure, be proud of the engagement you have taken for the part Great Britain is to take, when it is understood. It is impossible to place the exertions made in a better light, or more calculated to increase her influence on the Continent. Ever, my dear lord, most sincerely yours,
Lord Clancarty to Lord Castlereagh.
The Hague, March 13, 1814. My dear Lord— Your letter of the 4th, marked private, having notified to me the expectation of the Allies that, in consideration of the continental arrangements proposed to be made in favour of the House of Orange, his Royal Highness should be prepared to give up a West India colony to Sweden, to indemnify her for the proposed cession of Guadeloupe to France, and having placed it at my discretion at what time to open this business to the Prince of Orange, it appeared to me that the most immediate and frank manner of communicating with his Royal Highness upon this matter was the best line I could take upon it.
Accordingly, having been admitted to a private audience with his Royal Highness on Thursday last, I at once opened the business, and, at the same time, communicated to him the accession on the part of Russia to the barrier of Holland,
before agreed to by Austria and Prussia, and the intention you entertained of incorporating the whole in a secret article of the first treaty between Great Britain and the three Powers.
The Prince appeared so much satisfied with the accession of all the great Powers to the advanced barrier of Holland, that he received the communication of the sacrifice expected from him far better than I should have imagined. Without offering any objection to the principle, he requested me to make known to you two propositions, which he was anxiously desirous should be acceded to as the price of the proposed cession. The first of these is, that the property of all private individuals connected with the ceded colony should be secured ; and, secondly, that those of his subjects who should possess plantations in such colony, should be permitted freely to carry on a direct trade between the United Provinces and the colony to be ceded, in the same manner as they were now permitted so to do, while the sovereignty was in fact vested in his Majesty; and that such freedom of direct trade should be stipulated and secured, notwithstanding the cession.
I told him that I would not fail to make known his wishes to you, and that I had no doubt his interests would not be neglected in your hands, wherever they could be reasonably pushed; that, with respect to the first proposition, I should hope little difficulty would occur in its attainment; but that, upon the second, although under special circumstances, and from the deep interest which the Prince Regent's Government took in his concerns, it had been allowed by us, yet that the object was so directly at variance with the colonial principle of all countries, and so hostile, perhaps, to the very indemnification to Sweden for which the sacrifice was proposed, that, though I was sure everything would be attempted which could in reason be sought for the gratification of his Royal Highness, I could not be sanguine that any attempt of this nature could be successful ; but that, if it should, far from
having any sacrifice to lament by the cession of the colony, his Royal Highness would have to congratulate himself upon a substantive advantage, as he would thereby be exempted from all the expense of maintenance, while he, at the same time, would reap all the advantage of a direct commercial intercourse with the ceded colony. In subsequent conversations, I have held the same language both with the Prince and M. de Hogendorp, and they are both desirous of placing themselves in your hands, for the final arrangement of this matter, satisfied that you will do the best you can for bis Royal Highness's interests.
I have but this moment heard from Sir Thomas Graham upon the subject of the disaster of the 8th, at Bergen-opZoom. Poor fellow ! as I had guessed, he had not the heart to write before of the failure there, and its bloody consequences. I send you copies of his notes to me, and of his despatch to Lord Bathurst.
I send you also the copy of a letter I have received from Mr. Johnson. Upon the paragraph relating to the mission from General Maison to the Crown Prince, I have written to Mr. Thornton, giving him a copy of this paragraph, for the purpose of enabling him to make such inquiries as he may think fit. Yours, my dear lord, most affectionately,
CLANCARTY. The only despatches written since my last are not worth sending. These are No. 53, acknowledging their despatch No. 14, and acquainting Government with the Prince of Orange's assent to place the command of Dutch troops under the Crown Prince, as required by your No. 7, Continent; No. 54, forwarding two reports of d’Yoog to the Prince of Orange, of news from Bülow's army; No. 55, forwarding your despatches Nos. 8 and 9, from Chaumont; and No. 56, transmitting a copy of the Constitution (of which an abstract is making for you to be sent by next messenger), and stating the proposed ceremonial of the acceptance.
Head-quarters, Calmhout, March 10, 1814. My Lord—It becomes my painful task to report to your lordship that an attack on Bergen-op-Zoom, which seemed at first to promise complete success, ended in failure, and occasioned a severe loss to the first division of Brigadier-General Gore's brigade.
It is unnecessary for me to state the reasons which determined me to make the attempt to carry such a place by storm, since the success of two of the columns in establishing themselves on the ramparts with very trifling loss must justify the having incurred the risk, for the attainment of so important an object as the capture of such a fortress.
The troops employed were formed in four columns, as per margin.
i No. 1.
R. and F.
35th .. 250
21st . . 100
44th .... 300
650 3,950 1,100)
No. 1, the left column, attacked between the Antwerp and Water-port Gates. No. 2 attacked to the right of the New Gate. No. 3 was destined only to draw attention by a false attack near the Steenbergen Gate, and to be afterwards applicable according to circumstances. No. 4, right column, attacked at the entrance of the harbour, which could be forded at low water; and the hour was fixed accordingly at half-past 10, p.m., of the 8th instant. Major-General Cooke accompanied the left column; Major-General Skerrit and Brigadier-General Gore both accompanied the right column. This was the first which forced its way into the body of the place.
These two columns were directed to move along the rampart, so as to form a junction as soon as possible, and then to proceed to clear the rampart and assist the centre column, or to force open the Antwerp Gate. An unexpected difficulty about passing the ditch on the ice having obliged MajorGeneral Cooke to change the point of attack, a considerable delay ensued, and that column did not gain the rampart till half-past 11.
Meanwhile, the lamented fall of Brigadier-General Gore and Lieutenant-Colonel the Honourable George Carleton, and the dangerous wound of Major-General Skerrit, depriving the right column of their able direction, it fell into disorder, and suffered great loss in killed, wounded, and prisoners.
The centre column, having been forced back with considerable loss by the heavy fire of the place (Lieutenant-Colonel Morrice, its commander, and Lieutenant-Colonel Elphinstone, 33rd regiment, being both wounded), was re-formed under the command of Major Muttlebury, marched round, and joined to Major-General Cooke—the left wing of the 55th remaining to remove the wounded from the glacis.
However, the Guards too had suffered very severely during the night, by the galling fire from the houses on their position, and by the loss of the detachment of the 1st Guards, which, having been sent to endeavour to assist Lieutenant-Colonel