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however resistless the career of victory must be, in the hands of an army of superior force and conduct, over its adversaries in close fight, yet that by the distant annoyance, and secret and partial attacks of men accustomed to the use of missile weapons, although less warlike, they may be so hemmed in, harassed, and reduced, as to be finally overpowered.”
Other facts are adduced, in support of his doctrine, from the Roman history, and from our own. The importance of the Norman archers in the battle of Hastings, and of the English cross-bow men at the ever-memorable battles of Poictiers, Cressy, and Agincourt, is noticed, and also the statute of Henry VIII. to encourage and enforce the practice of shooting at a mark,
An anecdote related to the author by Lt. Col. MʻLeroth, late of the 95th, or rifle regiment, is worth transcribing.
“ In an action of some importance, a mounted officer of the eneny was on the point of being made prisoner; one only way presented itself, by which he had a chance of escaping; this was along the front of our line, within musket range ; he embraced this alternative; and, although the whole brigade fired at him, both man and horse escaped with impunity.” Another fact from the same authority is equally curious.
“ In order to cover themselves as much as possible from the enemy's aim, at the siege of York Town, our soldiers had each three bags of sand, to lay on the parapet ; two of these were placed with their ends at a little distance from each other, and the third crossed over the interval, leaving a small loop hole for the soldiers to fire through: the American riflemen, however, were so expert, that on seeing a piece protruded through the hole, they levelled towards it, and penetrating the opening, frequently shot his men through the head.”
Enough has been quoted to recommend this little pamphle tto general perusal. Captain B. concludes with several remarks on the “ inconveniencies which attach to the military training of domestic citizens, while it rests solely upon the humour of individuals," and proposes “compulsory musters," a measure upon which many will entertain sentiments very opposite to those of the author, whose observations on this head are nevertheless entitled to attention. A Northern Summer ; or Travels round the Baltic, through Den
mark, Sweden, Russia, and Part of Germany, in the Year 1804. By John Carr, Esq. Author of the Stranger in France, &c. &c. 4to. 21. 2s. Phillips. 1805.
From the agreeable recollection of The Stranger in France, which deservedly procured so much credit to Mr. Carr, and afforded . such various entertainment and information to a nuinerous class of readers, we are prepared to accompany him, with peculiar cheerfulness, in his Northern Tour. We close with the terms of the
agreement which forms the commencement of his work, and shall he content to take him, as a man does his wife, for better and worse, perfectly satisfied that, in such company, even the bleak and barren regions of the North will wear the most favourable aspect, and smile a welcome as we pass.
The peace, or rather the short truce, with France, which enabled Mr. Carr to exhibit to us so charming a sketch of modern Paris, having been followed by a renewal of still more violent hostilities, the South was again shut against the English traveller. Mr. C. was therefore tempted to delineate“ national characteristics” in the North, a quarter at this moment extremely enteresting, in a political point of view, and from whence the destinies of Europe are likely one day, and perhaps speedily, to issue. In other respects, a tour round the Baltic promised a fund of gratification to our author. Not confining himself to a dry description of roads and cities, his principal design is, “ to describe those features which principally distinguish us from our brethren in other regions, and them from each other.” This is a traveller's best object, and no person seems to us more competently qualified to fulfil it than Mr. Carr. How he has executed his task will very sufficiently appear in the course of our review.
Our tourist wisely preferred the summer for this excursion. The north, as he very elegantly and poetically observes, “ has hitherto been contemplated, clad in fur, and gliding with the swiftness of a light clouď before the wind, upon her roads of shining snow : I will take a peep at her in her summer garb, and will endeavour to form a nosegay of polar flowers." He embarked at Harwich in June, 1804, and landed at Husum at the time of the fair. His re• flection on the avarice and cruelty of those wretches on our coasts, who plunder and destroy the ship-wrecked, contrasted with the benevolence of the Helogolanders, who employ themselves in saving them; and the incident of the young girl, at Husum, mercenarily exposed to infamy by her parents,—are calculated to excite emotions both of shame and pride on account of our country.
From Husum Mr. Carr went to Flensborg, Abenraac, Hadersleb, Aversand, crossed the Little Belt, proceeded to Assens, Odensee, Nioborg, and passed the Great Belt, which introduces the following historical anecdote :-“In February, 1658, it formed a bridge of ice for the hardy troops of the warlike and ambitious Charles X. who, contrary to the advice of his council of war, marched over it to give battle to the Danes. During this tremendous passage a part of the ice gave way, and a whole squadron of the guards were immolated, not one of whom were saved, an order having been given that no one should attempt to assist his neighbour in such an emergency upon pain of death.” He next proceeded to Corsoer, in Zealand, and Roskild, in the cathedral of which town lie, in a superb tomb, the remains of Juliana Maria, well known for her sanguinary conduct towards the hapless Queen Matilda, and the unfortunate Counts Struenzee and Brandt; and also those of the celebrated Margaret of Voldimar. He gives a particular description of the royal palace at Fredericsberg, which suffered so much from fire in 1794, and so enters the city of Copenhagen.
This route, so well known to northern travellers, presents nothing entitled to very particular attention. Such a writer, however, as Mr. Carr, like Jaques in the forest of Amiens,
Finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks,
Sermons in stones, and good in every thing. Few persons, we apprehend, have described the same course of journey in a style so truly pleasant, and conducted a reader, by such easy stages, to the capital of Denmark. It was impossible that the battle of Copenhagen should not be among the first objects of his enquiry. His account of that event is extremely animated and interesting, and shall therefore be given at length.
On our return to the city, and about a mile from it, a turfed hillock of small poplars attracted our notice: it was the national tomb of the heroes who fell in the memorable battle of Copenhagen Roads, on the second of April, 1801, and stood in a meadow about two hundred yards from the road, and looked towards the Crown battery. As we approached it, we saw a snall monumental obelisk which was raised to the memory of Captain Albert Thurah, by the Crown Prince. It appeared by the inscription, that during the heat of that sanguinary battle, a signal was made from one of the block ships, that all the officers on board were killed; the Crown Prince, who behaved with distinguished judgment and composure during the whole of that terrific and anxious day, and was giving his orders on shore, exclaimed, 'Who will take the command? The gallant
Thurah replied, 'I will, my prince,' and immediately leaped into a boat, and, as he was mounting the deck of the block ship, a British shot numbered him amongst the dead, which formed a ghastly pile before him, and consigned his spirit and his glory to the regions of immortality. He was a young man of great promise. It is thus that death often
Strikes the poor peasant; he sinks in the dark,
Nor leaves e'en the wreck a name,
He sinks in the blaze of his fame. “ As the battle, under all its circumstances, was as awful and affecting as any in the English and Danish history, the reader will, I am sure, feel no reluctance minutely to contemplate the larger tomb which first attracted our notice: it is a pyramidal hillock, neatly turfed and planted with sapling poplars, corresponding with the number of officers who fell. At the base of the principal front are tomb stones recording the names of each of these officers and their respective ships. A little above is an obelisk of grey northern marble, raised upon a pedestal of granite, bearing this inscription :
“ To the memory of those who fell for their country, their grateful fellow citizens raise this monument, April 2, 1801.
“ And beneath, on a white marble tablet, under a wreath of laurel, oak and cypress bound together, is inscribed
“ The wreath which the country bestows, never withers over the grave of the fallen warrior.
“ The whole is enclosed in a square palisado : as a national monument it is too diminutive.
“ The next day I visited the spot where so much blood was shed. A young Danish officer upon the Crown battery obligingly pointed out the disposition of the ships, and spoke of the battle with great impartiality. From the position of the British fleets, before the squadron under lord Nelson bore down, and rendered his intention indubitable, the Danes were firmly of opinion that the British commander intended to proceed either to Calscrona or Revel, and made no preparation for defence; their ships were lying in ordinary; they therefore trusted solely to their block ships and batteries.
“On that day the hero of the Nile surpassed those achievements which an admiring and astonished world conceived must for ever remain without imitation, as they had been without example in the annals of the British navy. Favoured by a fortunate shift of wind, and an extraordinary elevation of the tide, which at the time was higher than the Danes had long remembered it, he placed his unsupported squadron, and as it is said with an unobserved signal of retreat flying at the mast head of the ship of the chief in command, in a most advantageous and formidable position. The citizens of Copenhagen in a moment flew to their posts; all distibctions were lost in the love of their country. Nobles and mechanics, gentleman and shopmen, rushed together in crowds to the quays the sick crawled out of their beds, and the very lame were led to the sca side, imploring to be taken in the boats, which were perpetually going off with crowds to the block ships. A carpage at once tremendous and novel, only served to increase their enthusiasm. What an awful moment! The invoked vengcance of the British nation, with the fury and velocity of lightning, was falling with terrible desolation upon a race of gallant people, in their very capital, whose kings were once seated upon the throne of England, and in the veins of whose magnanimous prince flowed the blood of her august family. Nature must have shuddered as she contemplated such a war of brethren : the conflict was short, but sanguinary beyond example; in the midst of the slaughter, the Heroic Nelson dispatched a flag of truce on shore, with a note to the Crown Prince, in which he expressed a wish that a stop should be put to the further effusion of human blood, and to avert the destruction of the Danish arsenal, and of the capital, which he observed, that the Danes must then see were at his mercy. He once more proposed their withdrawing from the triple league, and acknowledging the supremacy of the British Nag. As soon as the prince's answer was received, a cessation of bostilities took place, and Lord Nelson left his ship to go on shore. Upon bis arrival at the quay, he found a carriage which had been sent for him by Mr. D. a merchant of high respectability, the confusion being too great to enable the prince to send one of the royal carriages. In the former the gallant admiral proceeded to the palace in the octagon, through crowds of people, whose fury was rising to frenzy, and amongst whom his person was in more imminent danger than even from the cannon of the block-ships; but nothing could shake the soul of such a man. Arrived at the palace in the octagon he calmly descended from the carriage amidst the murinurs and groans of the cnraged concourse, which not even the presence of the Danish oficers, who accompanied him, could restrain. The Crown Prince received him in the hall, and conducted him up stairs, and presented him to the king, whose long shattered state of mind had left him but