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upon only when in position, while to less than fourteen days. The numfight in position was not at the option bers of the French, and the descripof the allies, but of the enemy. The tion of their troops were such, that, force which General Murray relied up, according to the opinion formed by on, under all circumstances, was redu. the general, the enemy was not to be ced, by his statements, to 4500 Bri- resisted in the field with any fair prostish ; and it seems also, that in case of pect of success by the allied army. disaster, retreat was considered by the The enemy was approaching, and from general as nearly impracticable. In his different circumstances, had the option consideration, at least, the dangers and of attacking the allies in the course of difficulties of the re-embarkation had four or five days. Why, then, persist become sufficiently apparent at a very in the siege, and continue to land stores, carly period. It was the opinion of provisions, heavy guns, and every thing the general also, that it would have requisite for the capture of the town? been quite impossible to take Tarra. Why expose materials of such imporgona by storm, or by a coup de main ; tance in the ensuing campaign, when for he did not make such attempt for the inevitable conclusion to be drawn many days, when the necessity of do. from the premises, if at all correct, is, ing so, even with much risk, was so that the general was at the time aware, urgent. We learn from his dispatches, that his measures could be of no avail not only that a coup.de.main was con- as to the object in view ? In such cirsidered as impracticable, but that even cumstances, his whole thoughts, plans, eight or ten days would have been in- and exertions, should have been turned sufficient, in Sir John Murray's judge. to the pursuit and security of other ment, to have put him in possession of objects, the success of which, though the fortress. But General Murray always, until his return to Valencia, must necessarily have been possessed precarious, it was still in his power to of nearly the whole of this information promote and perhaps to confirm. some days previously to that on which The force which the enemy could the re-embarkation took place; of the collect in Catalonia in a given time,– whole, of course, of that which con. the impossibility of any impression cerned his own army and the state of being made on Tarragona within that the works of Tarragona. The reports time,—the impropriety of risking an concerning the enemy appear to have action,—the necessity of raising the been, as stated by the general, in the siege, and the consequent failure of main points consistent ; and, with the one great object of the instructions ; exception of some slight variations as to all this appears to be assumed in the numbers, nearly uniform; they were dispatch written by General Murray considered credible and appear to have to Lord Wellington; but the general agreed with the betterand more certain consoles himself by stating, that he knowledge possessed by General Mur- hopes to be able toʻshew that no time ray. It is still more material to remark, was lost, when he had decided upon that he himself seems at all times to have abandoning the siege. On this point given them full credit. How, then, no great difference of opinion existed. does this state of matters explain or He was charged with loss of time jus:ify his conduct? The town was not certainly; but this time was lost in to be taken for eight or ten days; and coming to the decision, and not in the according to what Colonel Thackaray; execution, in which an unnecessary the chief engineer, stated to General haste and precipitation were conspicu. Murray, it could not be reduced in The delay with which he was
charged was in not returning instantly of the siege had become inevitable, to Valencia, according to the instruc. instead of being employed in landing tions received by him, so soon as the more stores and guns, or carrying them siege was abandoned. The charge of forward into situations of greater danunnecessary delay was never applied ger and exposure, the most zealous to the manner in which the resolution effort should have been made to preof abandoning the siege, when once pare for re-embarking every thing adopted, was put into execution. which had been already endangered ;
In one of General Murray's dis- and which from the period, when the patches to Lord Wellington, a sentence attempt upon the town was considerof condemnation seems, as it were, ed as impracticable, remained expo. passed upon his own conduct, and ed without any possibility of advanthat in very strong terms. “Upon a re. tage. This certainly appears to have view of this case,” says he, “ I believe been the moment seen by the general your lordship will rather be of opinion, himself, “ When in all prudence the that I continued the siege too long, cannon ought to have been embark. than that I abandoned it too soon, ed,'-and it must be regretted that and I can only plead an extreme anxi. his conduct was not more consistent ety to carry your lordship's views into with his conviction. In one of his let. execution as my excuse. I saw the
ters there is the following passage : moment when in all prudence the cannon “ For days an embarkation might be ought to have been embarked, and the impracticable, and that consideration enterprise abandoned; but that fol. made me extremely anxious, when the lowed,” &c. And then he proceeds continuance of the siege became imto state the reasons for not having practicable, to profit of the state of acted on this opinion, which although the beach, as it could not be depend. they might justify him for not imme. ed upon from one day to another." diately re-embarking, the whole of Here again the general seemed to be the infantry, and leaving the spot al. the first to pronounce censure upon his together, yet in no way explain his own conduct. continuing on shore, and persevering As it appears then to have been to land the heavy guns, stores, provi- clearly ascertained before the 10th, sions, &c. up to the very hour of re. that nothing within the range of orembarkation. Neither can they apply dinary probabilities could have put more than any other part of his state- the allies in possession of Tarragona, ment, as an answer to the charge of lin. the proper use to have been made of gering subsequently on the coast, and the 10th and 11th was to have secured re-landing the whole expedition. The on board the fleet the materiel of the result of his statement appears tobe, that expedition, which had become useless the following up one great object of his on shore-which was then every in. instructions was sacrificed to an anxiety stant in danger without any adequate to accomplish that which was admitted object; and part of which, in conseto be impracticable-a line of conduct quence of the general's not having seemingly at variance with the better acted in pursuance of his own convicjudgment of the general himself, and tion, was ultimately abandoned. From with the instructions which ought to the details given in the general's dishave been his guide.
patches as to the use which was made On the 8th and Ith, it appears of the 3d of June, on the first debarka. that nothing could be done ; but on tion, the importance of a single day is the 10th and 11th, when the raising sufficiently obvious ; nearly all the in
fantry-several field pieces, and a pro- maining, there can be no doubt. It re. portion of stores and baggage, were mains to be considered, therefore, whesafely put on shore on that one day, ther there was a sufficient inducement when there was no particular stimulus to adopt this line of conduct so contra. to more than ordinary exertions -Al. ry to that which was pointed out by though a brisk attack is certainly re- the commander of the forces ? --It must commended in the instructions, it has always be recollected, that General never been insinuated, that a more Murray thought himself unequal to vigorous prosecution of the siege would contend with the forces of buchet when have been practicable, or attended with united. It was on this account the siege
One fact, however, men had just been raised, and the cannon, tioned by Sir John Murray, it does stores, and ammunition sacrificed. It appear to be material to point out, viz. was also the opinion of General Mur. that six twenty-four pounders, four ray, that Suchet had the power of withhowitzers, and four mortars were not drawing any advanced posts of his placed in the batteries, against the army when he pleased, and of re-unibody of the place, until the night of the ting the whole, and giving battle, when 10th, a period when, instead of more it suited his convenience. It is necesartillery being placed in a situation to sary only to refer to his various letters make its desertion and destruction in to prove that all expectation of cutting evitable, all that was already in danger off any division of the enemy, was should have been removed.
deemed by Sir John Murray to be viWith respect to the conduct pur. sionary; that, unless the enemy should sued immediately after the siege was be guilty of the greatest folly, the atraised, it was remarked, that, accord- tempt was impracticable. Yet with ing to Sir John Murray's instructions, the full knowledge of all these facts, the only remaining object then was, the danger of re-embarkation at the his immediate return to Valencia, to Coll de Ballaguer remaining the same .co-operate with and assist the Spanish as when General Murray before dearmies in front of the French position clined to embark the army at that on the Xucar.–So soon as the plan of point, the French armies remaining in re-embarkation at Tarragona was de. force the same, and in situation imcided upon, however, the cavalry and a proved, every ground of objection to part of the field-train were sent over continuing on shore still existing, all land to the Coll de Ballaguer. It was af. the causes of the former hasty re. terwards judged expedient to land more embarkation, and of the great sacriinfantry on that point, for the further fices which had just been made, being protection of the re-embarkation. in full force, in opposition to every When the remainder of the infantıy principle upon which the general had arrived it was resolved to reland the just been acting the very thing is whole with a view of cutting off a di done and the very risks are incurred, vision of Marshal Suchet's army at which before had been so strongly Bandilloz ;
the 13th or 14th condemned, and this too when the in(the precise date not being stated) it ducement which had operated in the appears that the re-landing of the ex
first instance no longer existed, and pedition took place accordingly. That when no adequate object can be disthis conduct was contrary both to the covered to account for so strange a letter and to the spirit of Lord Wel. deviation from the instructions receive lington's instructions, and inexpedient ed.-To pursue the detail of facts, with a view to the only object now re- we find them precisely such as the ar
guments and statements in General directions of General Murray, must Murray's letters would have led us to have been led to suppose, from the inexpect. In the night of the 15th, structions which he had received, that when the English approached, the
a battle with De Caen was on the French withdrew their corps from eve of taking place, in which he was Bandillos ; and, in the meantime, the to take a principal share; and the Spacorps from Barcelona advanced to nish general continued to act on that Cambrills, about ten miles from the supposition, and to remain (of course allied positions.—On the 16th, the with considerable risk to his own English troops, in pursuit of the Ban- troops) undeceived until after the guns dillos French division, returned within the batteries were spiked, and a large out having accomplished their object, portion of the allied army was actualjust as might have been expected ; ly on board the vessels. Nor was the and on the 17th, when the allied army, resolution of sending the field artillery according to the instructions, ought to and cavalry for re-embarkation to a have been ready to act again in Va. different and somewhat distant spot, lencia, General Murray found himself near the Coll de Ballaguer, less extrastill near the Coll de Ballaguer. Here ordinary. This was the precise spot he remained, with every prospect which had been represented by Geneof an impending general action, to ral Murray as so uncertain and dangeravoid which, on the 12th so much had ous, that for this very rea:on, he had been sacrificed, and with every risk of declined embarking the whole army a second re-embarkation to be still there. A separation of the different incurred. Lieutenant-General Lord parts of the army was of course proWilliam Bentinck then arrived on the duced by the embarkation of the in17th, and the final re-embarkation of fantry alone, leaving the guns and ca. the whole army, which had a second valry without due protection, although time been resolved upon by General it was mainly to avoid this very evil Murray (the idea of a general engage that General Murray had determined ment having been abandoned), was, not to allow of a delay sufficient to by the orders of Lord William Ben- enable the admiral to
the tratinck, immediately carried into execu- phies, which were, in consequence,
abandoned. The fact, also, that Ad. The facts of a hasty and precipitate miral Hallowell did offer to secure embarkation, without any previous ar- every thing, if Sir John Murray would rangement, and the consequent aban- have consented to a certain delay, doning of a considerable portion of ar- was very handsomely admitted by tillery, stores, and ammunition, it General Murray. Whether the delay seems difficult to dispute. So sudden proposed by the admiral might or was the resolution to re-embark fi- might not, according to a fair calculanally adopted, and so little were all tion, have been permitted with safety, parties prepared for this measure, that in the circumstances in which the geevery arrangement was making, and neral was placed ; whether, from the every exertion employed, for a more immediate approach of the enemy, or vigorous prosecution of the siege, up other causea, all additional zeal, firm. to the very moment when the execu- ness, and exertion, would have been tion of this new resolution had actually unavailing; and whether the delay recommenced. General Copons, who quired would or would not have incommanded the Spanish army, acting volved the troops in a serious affair in co-operation with, and under the with a very superior force, and have been attended with the probable de paign, that advantage should be ta. struction of a considerable portion of ken of the circumstances which were the army :- These are the only points favourable, and those errors avoided, on which any difference of opinion the fatal effects of which had been can exist.
already but too often experienced. It It is true, indeed, that in the instruc. was Lord Wellington's object to use, xions sent by Lord Wellington to Ge. and at the same time carefully preserve, neral Murray, there is the following that superiority of numbers which the passage
:-" It must be understood, Spaniards then enjoyed, and which the however, by the general officers at the defeat and dispersion of any of their head of the troops, that the success of corps would have destroyed. How all our endeavours in the ensuing cam- then does the passage apply to the paign will depend upon none of the circumstances in which General Mur. corps being beaten of which the ope. ray was placed? How does it apply, rating armies will be composed; and as a defence against a charge for not that they will be in sufficient numbers having risked a general action, when to turn the enemy, rather than attack the result would have been attended them in a strong position ; and that I with glory and benefit to the cause of shall forgive any thing, excepting that the world then at stake? Giving it, one of the corps should be beaten or however, all due weight, how can it dispersed.” By what ingenious argu. account for the perseverance in the ments this passage can be fairly quo- siege without object--for the conseted in defence of Sir John Murray, it quent losses incurred—for the delay in was difficult, said his accusers, to dis- coming to the decision of re-embarking cover; scarcely, indeed, was it applica- that which was uselessly exposed on ble at all to the circumstances in which shore-for the want of previous arhe was placed. The meaning appears rangement for the improper haste obvious : Several of the Spanish corps, and confusion attending the re-embarkit is well known, were composed of ation when the measure was at last raw levies, not to be depended upon finally decided upon--and for the subwhen opposed to veteran troops, more sequent delay on the coast, and the reespecially when the latter were assist. landing of the army? Next to the loss ed by position. It was also a matter of a whole corps, the loss of the e. of notoriety, that many of the previous quipments of an army, the loss of guns, failures of the Spaniards had arisen stores, and ammunition--the loss, in from their generals not being sufficient. part, of the means of carrying on those ly impressed with this unpleasant truth; sieges, which, in the general scope of but, on the contrary, suffering their the instructions, were evidently conzeal and confidence to get the better of templated in the course of the camtheir prudence. Thus they continual. paign, was of the utmost importance; ly risked general actions, which ought, such losses were scarcely less embara except in cases of decided advantage rassing than the loss of a corps, more and superiority, to have been most especially when the infinite difficulty carefully avoided. On the other hand, of replacing them in Spain is duly con. the only advantage which the Spaniards sidered ; and according to the true possessed, was in the superiority of meaning of the paragraph which has their numbers. The instructions, there. been quoted, they ought to have been fore, looking to the real state of af. most cautiously avoided. This profairs, appear naturally to prescribe, as position, although not literally expressa gencral rule in carrying on the cam. ed, must in all fairness be considered