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to be without power, without autho. courtiers, who did not dare to wear rity, without talents to create them in any place which was not occuspect, or to command obedience. The pied by the French, for fear of being French armies in Spain, instead of con- murdered by the Spanish peasants. He centrating under Joseph's orders, had made several promotions in his Spanish been dispersed every day more and army, which, however, was not as yet more over the Peninsula--Weak on in existence; he gave away places in every point, they exhausted them. reversion, governments, and adminisselves even by their victories over the trations, in the most distant provinces Spaniards ; and in Galicia, Portugal, of the kingdom in both hemispheres, and the Asturias, they had lost, even while he dared not sleep even a few among the insurgent peasants, their leagues from Madrid in one of his counFonted reputation of invincibility: try bouses. Like his brother at Paris,
As the dynasty of the wretched in. he pulled down old buildings to beautruder was closed by the successes of tify his capital, but he had no money this year as he was present in person to raise a single new edifice, and the at the battle of Vittoria, and as the extent of his munificence was the reFrench ascribe much of their misfor. moval of rubbish. tunes to his weakness and impolicy, In order to please the people, he enthe sketch of his character and pro. deavoured to imitate the solemn pomp ceedings which they have given us may and grave ceremony of his predecessors. not be uninteresting.
He marched on foot at the head of Joseph fancied, we are told, that he processions through the streets of Mamight attach the people of Spain to his drid, making the officers of his staff, sway by the well-known mildness of his and the soldiers of his body guard, character, in the same manner as he had follow him with lighted ers in their gained the Neapolitans ; and he had al. hands. All these pretensions to sanelowed the French troops to advance tity, this affectation of munificence, from all sides into the peninsula, with and absurd prodigality, only made him the intention of gaining provinces, that an object of ridicule and contempt. be might reign over a greater extent of The Spaniards had amused them. country. He had contracted hrabits selves with spreading a report that of indolence upon the peaceful throne King Joseph was a one-eyed drunkard, of Naples. Instead of following his which made a profound impression on armies he remained in the capital, the imagination of the country people. plonged it dissipation, and regretting It was in vain that he endeavoured to the delights of Italy. He wanted to overcome the popular prejudice by sleep and reign at Madrid as he had shewing himself often in public; the done at Naples, even before his armies people never lost the conceit that he had conquered for him, supposing the was one-eyed. We are told that even conquest possible, a kingdom at the on the day of his coronation, at one of price of their blood.
the theatres, a farce, called Harlequin He filled the columns of his state Emperor of the Moon, was played se-, journal with decrees which were ne- veral times. During the representa • ver executed, and scarcely read; he tion, the people made applications to gave to one church the wax and sacred the ephemeral situation of Joseph at vases of another, pillaged long before Madrid. Devotees, who were accus. by the French, or stripped by the Spa. tomed to mingle in all their conversa. ráards themselves. He lavished the tions the ejaculation Jesus, Marin, 1! decorations of his royal order on his Josepli, stopped short vben ihey had
pronounced the two first names, and, Such was the character of Joseph as pausing, would use the paraphrase, Y drawn by his own countrymen ; but el Padre de nuestro senor, lest they the circumstances which had recently might draw down a benediction on Jo- occurred so favourable to the cause seph, by naming the saint who was his of the allies, although they were in supposed patron in Heaven.
some measure the result of the weak The good nature of Joseph came and insignificant character of the head afterwards to be considered as weak. of the central government, were also ness, even by the French themselves. to a great degree inseparable from After battles had been won over the the nature of the enterprise which the Spaniards, he would go himself to the French had undertaken. When the prisoners sent from the army to the ruler of France confined himself to one Retiro, and receive their oaths of fide. object, which, however impossible the lity, telling them that they had been attainment of it might be, was interest. deceived by traitors, and that he, as ing to the French, his army seconded their king, wished only for their happi. his views, and was ready to sacrifice ness and that of their country. The itself in his service ; but when his amprisoners, who expected nothing less bition led him to distant enterprises than to be shot, immediately made when he embarked in projects which no scruple of taking the oaths of sub- were carried into effect at the same mission required of them, but the mo- time in distant parts of the world, and ment they were armed and equipped when, instead of directing the execu. they deserted and returned to their own, tion himself
, he left it to a government armies ; so that the French soldiers more weak and imbecile than any which called King Joseph the administrator had diegraced Europe, then, as might in chief of the military depots of the have been expected, his views of agsupreme junta. Even French marshals grandizement received a check, which, and generals, we are told, were very in the issue, proved decisive and fatal. unwilling to obey a man whom they Such was the state of affairs at the bedid not consider a Frenchman, since ginning of this year. The French were he had been acknowledged King of not in a condition to act offensively ; Spain ; and they often contradicted and, so long as the war in the north con. him, and sought to disgust him, that tinued, could have no other object in they might be sent back into Germa- view but to maintain the ground which ny. They would have been happy, at they occupied. On the part of the any price, to have quitted an irregular allies, however, this interval was spent war, which had become unpopular even in preparations for an active and gloin the army. Joseph had neither enough rious campaign. of military talent and authority, nor Much had already been done for sufficient confidence in himself, to ven. Spain. A large and fertile district of ture to command such operations as the kingdom had been finally recover. the changes in the general situation of ed, and an opportunity had been af. affairs imperiously required. He dared forded to the Spaniards to embody a not issue any new order without con- considerable army. The Spanish go. sulting his brother. The plans sent vernment, indeed, was still weak and from Paris, or from Germany, fre. inefficient ; yet experience had taught quently arrived too late, and they could them to correct some of the grosser never be otherwise than imperfectly errors of their policy. An excellent executed by one who had not conceia symptom of this amendment was shewa
in the appointment of Lord Welling. ton to the chief command of the Spa. lating to personal liberty, that they nish armies. The cortes, on the sug- might arrest a greater number of the gestion of the regency passed a decree, traitors, but were refused by the cortes, investing his lordship with extraordi- who did not think the affair of suffinary powers as generalissimo of the cient importance to require so strong Spanish land forces. A portion of a measure. One of the libels was in the Spanish general staff was appoint- the following terms :-" The streets ed to attend him, and to them all the of Seville present to the Spanish peocommunications from the different ar. ple, to that people ever pious and mies were to be addressed : on the friendly to the monks, a spectacle other hand, all orders relative to the which must excite the most painful armies were to emanate from his lord- sentiments. - Priests, who never could ship through the channel of the Spa- have believed that the smallest opposinish staff near his person.-General tion could be made to their assembling, Castanos, who was much in the confio present themselves; the intendant comdence of Marquis Wellington, arrived mands them in the name of the governat Seville early in the present year, to ment not to assemble, and prohibits prepare the Spanish army for active their entrance into the monasteries ; operations; and it was understood that they entreat, they supplicate, but they a great and determined effort would be are not heard ; they are abandoned, made by the Spaniards themselves in they are repulsed; and to avoid dying the course of the approaching spring. with hunger, these wretches disperse The cortes agreed to furnish Lord themselves through the streets, and Wellington with an army of 50,000 beg their bread from door to door, men for the ensuing campaign ; and clad in their sacred habits ; they stop for these troops his lordship. had in the churches, and there implore the the power of appointing officers. A pity of the populace. What have these corps of reserve was also formed in An. ministers of God done? what crime dalusia, and another in Gallicia, in or. have they committed ?" &c.---Such der to maintain the more prominent were the artificesof traitors, who sought force in a condition of permanent effi. to disunite and enslave the country. ciency.
The Spanish troops meanwhile had Yet were the discontents of the Spa. been slowly acquiring discipline and niards, and their distrust of the Bri- experience. - The British army had retish, by no means removed. The abo- ceived a strong reinforcement of 20,000 lition of the Inquisition, the suppres- men after the battle of Salamanca, and sion of the convents, and the establish- discipline had been restored by strict ment of persons not noble by birth in regulations, and enforced during the the departments formerly occupied by period of repose. The disposable troops nobles alone, appear to have excited at the opening of the campaign were about this time murmurings among
the estimated at about 80,000 British and clergy and nobility of the ancient re. Portuguese, with 40 or 50,000 Spagime; some of whom, in conjunction nish regulars, besides a considerable with the partizans of Joseph Buona- guerilla force, which was hourly inparte, published libels upon the re- creasing.-- The French force in Spain gency, and against British influence. was still however very numerous ; and Three or four of this faction were ar- Buonaparte, notwithstanding the sigrested in Seville. The regency, on
nal reverses he had sustained in the this occasion, demanded of the cortes north, was unwilling to reduce his ara temporary suspension of the laws re. my in the peninsula, or to hazard the
VOL. VI. PART I.
loss of so great a country. He had whole forces of the north of Spain, been compelled, however, to make nu. therefore, which, besides the regular merous drafts to supply officers for the troops, comprehended numerous bands immense levies which he was then rai- of guerillas, were completely under the sing ; but the deficiencies thụs occa. controul of the British commander, sioned were replaced from the new Such was the situation of the allied conscription. No sooner, however, did armies. The enemy again, enlightened he suspect the intentions of Austria, by the reverses of the last year, occuthan he found it necessary to relax for pied a more concentrated situation. a time his exertions in Spain ; and con- The three French armies of Portugal, siderable detachments were withdrawn the centre and the south, were united to reinforce the grand army on the in Castile, under Joseph Buonaparte, Elbe. Soult, who had long possessed whose head-quarters were at Madrid. the chief direction of the war in Spain, The army of Portugal was under the was called to the assistance of his mas- immediate command of General Reille, ter in Germany, and as the enemy's who bad his head quarters at Valladoforce had been
thus considerably re- lid ; that of the centre obeyed the ore duced, Lord Wellington hoped, by ders of Count d’Erlon, whose head. one grand effort, to liberate the penin- quarters were in the vicinity of Masula, and drive the French beyond the drid, while the army of the south had Pyrenees.
its head-quarters at Toledo. The poThe allied forces, before the opening sition of the allies thus formed a very of the campaign, were spread over a
extensive semicircle round that which very extensive line. Lord Welling the enemy occupied in the centre of ton, with the main body of the British Spain. On this circumstance, perhaps, and Portuguese, occupied cantonments the French founded their hopes of a along the northern frontier of Portu. successful resistance, conceiving that gal, while General Hill, with a part of by the rapid movement of their conthe army, and with the Spanish forces centrated forces they might baffle at under Murillo, was posted in Estre. tacks made from 80 many different madura. The second and third Spa- points. The plan of the campaign nish armies, commanded by the Duc however, which Lord Wellington ha del Parque and General Ellio, were sta- formed was profound and judicious tioned, the one in La Mancha, and the General Hill at first threatened Ma other on the frontiers of Murcia and drid ; but so soon as the season for ac Valencia. The force recently levied tion arrived, he turned to the left in Andalusia, which was denominated marched through the Puerto de Ba the army of reserve, had set out from nos, and joined the main army, which Seville, under the command of General was assembling in the neighbourhood O‘Donnel, who, on account of his ex- of Ciudad Rodrigo. General O'Don ploits in Catalonia, had received the nel, at the same time, marched throug! title of Conde de Abisbal. The army Estremadura, and the whole forc of Gallicia, under the command of Ge- of the allied army directed its cours neral Castanos, was stationed on the northward on the line of the Douro frontiers of the province of that name. That river, the largest in Spain, had This officer was devoted to Lord Wels in the preceding campaign, proved a lington, and the army of Gallicia was, important barrier; and the French of course, very much in the same si- who possessed along its northern ban tuation as if it had been under the im- a series of fortified positions, hoped mediate command of his lordship. The for a time at least, to dispute the pas sage. Lord Wellington, however, by was performed at the cathedral, and a very able arrangement, completely the service was attended by Lord Wel. provided against this obstacle. His lington.-This cathedral is considered force, as already mentioned, was divi. as one of the finest in Spain. It is ded into three parts, of which the cen- built of a white freestone, is surmounttre, composed chiefly of light troops, ed with elegant turrets, bastions, was commanded by his lordship in per- arches, and a large dome, and adorned son. With these he pushed on to Sa- with a profusion of carved work in a lamanca, and once more delivered that rich and elaborate style. It is a very famous city from the modern Vandals. lofty and spacious edifice, standing in The French general, Villat, had scarce.
an open square. The grand altar is ly time to evacuate it with the loss of very magnificent ; opposite to which 500 of his rear guard; the British en- stands the chancel, greatly resembling tered the town at full gallop. The those of the English cathedrals. The right, commanded by Sir Rowland altar and chancel are surrounded by a Hill, including only one division of screen of stone-work, exquisitely carBritish, moved in a parallel direc. ved. The edifice contains two organs tion with the centre on the left bank in the gallery, one of which is remarkof the Douro. But the grand feature able for its size and superior tone. The of the plan consisted in the passage of church also, from its munificent enthe main body of the army to the north dowments, is able to maintain a very of the Douro at Braganza; whence, superior band of singers from Italy. under the command of Sir Thomas Yet neither the magnificence nor the Graham, it proceeded along the right sanctity of this fine building would bank of the river, thus superseding the have restrained the licentious fury of necessity of forcing a passage in the the invaders ; for shortly before the arface of the enemy. The right of the rival of the British it had been doomed Douro, throughout this part of its to destruction. A large contribution course, is rugged and precipitous, and could not (from a total deficiency of completely commands the opposite means) be discharged ; and the French bank ; and the French had confidently general, in consequence, threatened to reckoned on advantages, which this destroy the cathedral, unless his unreafine plan entirely defeated. Such were sonable demands were complied with. the admirable arrangements made for The reply returned was, that as the opening the campaign, and they were cathedral was public property, its deexecuted with ability scarcely inferior struction would not affect the personal to that by which they had been planned. interests of individuals, and that no one
These successive dispositions baffled would interfere. The arrival, how- . at once the provisions made by the ene- ever, of the English prevented the ac. my for arresting the victorious progress complishment of this barbarous resoof the allies. Their detachments on lution. both sides of the Douro retired preci- The situation of Salamanca compitately, and Lord Wellington advan- mands many advantages; the natural eed without any obstacle besides those position is strong, and pains have been which nature presented.
taken to secure it by a substantial wall, The British commander, attended which, in its most exposed situation, by his staff, and several British and is flanked by a strong bastion. The Spanish generals, remained a few days appearance of the town since the inva. in Salamanca. The morning after the sion of the French, excites many me. French had been driven away, Te Deum lancholy reflections to those who have