« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »
ver his senses, before an officer, sent by the Nabob, came and inquired if the English chief survived ; and, soon after, the same man returned with an order to open the prison. The dead were so thronged, and the survivors had so little strength remaining, that they were employed near half an hour in removing the bodies which lay against the door, before they could clear a passage to go out one at a time; when, of one hundred and forty-six who went in, no more than twenty-three came out alive, the ghastliest forms that ever were seen alive. The Nabob's troops beheld them, and the havock of death from which they had escaped, with indifference ; but did not prevent them from removing to a distance, and were immediately obliged, by the intolerable stench, to clear the dungeon, whilst others dug a ditch, on the outside of the fort, into which all the dead bodies were promiscuously thrown.
Mr. Holwell, unable to stand, was, soon after, carried to the Nabob, who was so far from shewing any compassion for his condition, or remorse for the death of the other prisoners, that he only talked of the treasures which the English had buried ; and, threatening him with farther injuries, if he persisted in concealing them, ordered him to be kept a prisoner. The officers to whose charge he was delivered put him into fetters, together with Messrs. Court and Walcot, who were likewise supposed to know something of the treasures; the rest of the survivors, amongst whom were Messrs. Cooke and Mills, were told they might go where they pleased ; but an English woman, the only one of her sex amongst the sufferers, was reserved for the seraglio of the general, Meer Jaffier. The dread of remaining any longer within the reach of such barbarians, determined most of them to remove immediately, as far as their strength enabled them, from the fort, and most tended towards the vessels, which were still in sight; but when they reached Govindpore, in the southern part of the Company’s bounds, they were informed that guards were stationed to prevent any persons from passing to the vessels; on which most of them took shelter in deserted huts, where some of the natives, who had served the English in different employments, came and administered to their immediate wants. Two or three, however, ventured, and got to the vessels before sun-set. Their appearance, and the dreadful tale they had to tell, were the severest of reproaches to those on board, who, intent only on their own preservation, had made no efforts to facilitate the escape of the rest of the garrison; never, perhaps, was such an opportunity of performing an heroic action so ignominiously neglected: for a single sloop, with 15 brave men on board, might, in spite of all the efforts of the enemy, have come up, and, anchoring under the fort, have carried away all
" who suffered in the dungeon,
French Empire—The following extract from the Journal de Paris, may be regarded as an official expose of the military and naval strength of the empire:
“If we take a view of the French empire, we see that it to day offers a development of forces, perhaps, unexampled. At the moment, when near 500,000 men are marching from Hamburgh, the Wesel, Mayence, Verona, Munich, Dresden, and Berlin, to take a position upon the Oder and the Vistula, whilst 50,000 men form camps of reserve for the protection of the coasts of France, Italy, the kingdom of Naples, and the Illyrian provinces, and that six armies, amounting to nearly 300,000 men, are in the peninsula, fifty battalions are in march from different points, to replace, in Spain, seven or eight regiments, which have been recalled, and some detachments of the Imperial Guard, 6000 cavalry, have set out from the depots to reinforce that same army, and all this is done without effort, without extraordinary means, without bustle. At the same time, considerable fleets are equipped and armed; several vessels will, in the course of the summer, be completed in Toulon; several are constructing at Venice, one has been launched at Genoa, many others are upon the stocks at Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Antwerp, Cherbourg, and Rochefort. The funds to be appropriated to ships, roads, canals, bridges, new basins, and dock-yards, are, as we are assured, more considerable than those of last year: the construction of a new basin at the mouth of the Loire is talked of: the road from Hamburgh to Wesel will, this year, be finished: thus a route of more than 80 leagues, costing more than ten millions, will have been finished in less than two years. The road from Amsterdam to Antwerp occupies three depots of workmen; six of the same are employed upon that which coasts the Mediterranean from Nice to Rome; that from Parma to Spezzia. The causeway from Bourdeaux to Bayonne, across Les Landes, will be finished this season. Roads, which will cross the Berre in different directions, are, it is said, in contemplation, and the establishing of a direct communication with Saragossa, by travelling the Pyrenees at a great number of points. The basin of Flushing will be completely finished before the month of June; thirty vessels, completely armed, will be able to enter it, an advantage which the old basin did not possess, in which ships could not enter without having their guns taken out. This year the Elbe has been sounded, and understood; that river possesses similar advantages to those possessed by the Scheldt; it has fine harbours, basins, and an arsenal for building will be established there. The works of the strong fortresses are pursued with equal activity. Three forts have been constructed at the Helder; forts Morlando, Dugemmu, and Lasalle, are entirely completed, and cevered by inundations. Batteries defend the passage of the Helder, and protect the squadron. A basin and a maritime establishment have been decreed, and will be commenced this year. Already would three months' open trenches be required to take the Helder, that key of the Zuiderzee and Holland.”
Massacre at Valencia.-It may be recollected, that Suchet, in one of his despatches relative to the fall of Valencia, accused Mr. Tupper, the British consul in that city, of having encouraged the assassination of the French residents in the place, 325 in number 1 Mr. T. has published a vindication of himself from this horrible charge, and gives the following as a true narrative of his proceedings during the Inassacre.
“A canon of the church of St. Isidro, of Madrid, headed a faction which was composed of men of the vilest characters. They had all been guilty either of murder, or of other great crimes, for which some of them had been condemned to hard labour for life, and others to perpetual imprisonment. They were, however, unlawfully set at liberty; and placing themselves under the guidance of their chief, they took possession of the citadel of Valencia in the nonth of June, 1808. They then declared void the authority of the Supreme Junta, of which I was a member; but its sittings were nevertheless continued.—Before this faction got into power, the French residents had taken refuge in the citadel, and were then protected by the Junta but as soon as the canon and his party had possessed themselves of the place, these unfortunate refugees fell victims to their sanguinary views. During the night of the 4th of June, about 150 of these miserable men were most savagely butchered; and the next morning 175 others were ordered, by the infamous canon, to be chained together, and marched out into the open fields, where they were all murdered by a dozen men belonging to this band of assassins, and who were sent there for the express purpose.
“As soon as I was informed of their barbarous intention, I hastened to the spot, to endeavour to prevent this bloody work, or at least to lessen the number of victims; but all my exertions were in vain. In the mean time the city was one general scene of blood and anarchy; the assassins every where committed the vilest depredations, and being guilty of the most inhuman murders. The French consul, Lacrusse, was now diligently sought for. I wrote to him, however, at the risk of my life, and offered him my house and my protection, of which he gratefully accepted, and thus he escaped from his bloodthirsty pursuers. His fate was in my hands; but still, at the farther hazard of my own safety, I kept him concealed for many days, until I had an opportunity of conveying him down to the sea side, and embarking him for France, on board an English vessel, with about 60
others of his countrymen, whom Providence had also made me instrumental in saving from the murderous knife of the barbarians. Their audacity had at last become so great, that they even brought five unfortunate and respectable Frenchmen in the hall of the Junta, during one of its sittings, and there murdered them. On this occasion I was the only member who at first ventured to oppose these ruffians, but I was soon seconded by Padre Rico. I sprang from my seat, and placing myself between the devoted victims and their murderers, I endeavoured to appease their rage; but that endeavour was fruitless, and I was nearly assassinated myself. An arm was even lifted to murder me, but the blow that was aimed at me was providentially intercepted in its fall. About this time also, and while the French consul still remained secretly under my protection, my house was repeatedly attacked by the assassins; but with the assistance of a few friends, I successfully opposed their entrance, and ultimately succeeded in gaining over several of this sanguinary band. One day I had likewise the good fortune to get about 30 of them together in the market-place. These men, fully armed, accustomed to murder, and ripe for further crimes, formed a ring round me, and I addressed them for a considerable time. I forgot that the men whose cause I was pleading were Frenchmen; I forgot also my own danger: humanity alone was the motive that prompted me; and by means of promises and money, I succeeded in appeasing the fury of the most savage and brutal of men. Many of them were even brought over to my party; and from that day the streams of blood that had been witnessed for some time in the unfortunate city of Valencia, ceased to flow.
“Soon after this, the Junta recovered its full authority. The chief of this bloody plot was arrested, tried by the Junta, found guilty of assassination, and executed with about 90 of his accomplices, and I must also add, that I was one among the most active in bringing them to punishment.
“Such was my conduct during the whole of this unhappy business; and such too, as I would again observe, if unfortunately I should again be exposed to witness the massacre of any peaceful citizens.
“If Marshal Suchet was in possession of the above facts, when he accused me of having participated in the guilt of those assassins, who might have escaped the punishment due to their crimes, then his charge is most ungenerous and base; and if he was not acquainted with those facts, he ought at least to have shown some ground on which to bring forward so serious an accusation, although against an enemy.
Syrufi from Chesnuts.-Naples, February 29. The syrup from chesnuts, which during a few days lately has been exposed to sale in this city, is so perfect as to make us no longer think of the best grape syrup. It is infinitely sweeter for sherbets, lemonade, and all culinary Purposes. The manufacturers are now intent on extracting sugar from this syrup.
Earthquakes.—Rome, March 22. This morning about three o'clock, a shock of an earthquake, the strongest of any felt in Italy for a considerable length of time, was experienced in this city, it lasted about 25 seconds, and was accompanied with a noise resembling that of thunder: the movement was in the direction of nearly from north to south. The heavens were serene, the sea was calm, and the temperature moderate. The atmosphere was afterwards charged with black clouds. Almost all the buildings suffered more or less. A woman died of fright, and a country house sell, and buried in its ruins two children and their father.
Recent advices received from the Mediterranean state, that severe o of an earthquake had been felt at Smyrna, which did great mischief.
Improvements.-Letters from New South Wales of May 20, state, that great improvements have taken place in that colony since the accession of colonel Macquarrie to the government. The large town of Sydney is now planned and laid out in regular streets, and divided into districts, with head-boroughs, sub-constables, watchmen, &c.— D'Arcy Wentworth has been appointed to the head of the police. Five townships have been laid out on the Hawkesbury and George rivers. The roads from Sydney to Paramatta and Hawkesbury, which were scarcely passable, have been repaired, bridges thrown over the small streams, and turnpikes established. Butcher's meat was from ls. to 1s. 3d. per lb. and the supply of the colony equal to its consumption. Wool was likely to be the first staple of commerce. Settlers of good character were furnished with live stock, from the government stores, on consideration of paying the value, in money or grain, in eighteen months. The population of Sydney is estimated at 10,000 souls, of which number 8000 have been sent from England as convicts.
: Mount Caucasus explored.—Petersburgh, March 12. Two learned travellers, Messrs. Engelhardt and Parrot, are returned from a journey they made to Mount Caucasus, and are arrived at Dorpat. They have employed the course of a complete year in examining by barometrical observations the general levels of the countries between the Caspian and the Black Sea; in order to determine with precision which of those bodies of water is the higher. The solution of that problem will result from the combination of their observations, when they are properly put in order. This is not a question of pure curiosity interesting only to the learned: it will be applied to determine the courses of canals of cohmunication between those two seas.These travellers have accomplished a still more difficult enterprise: they have visited the very summit of the Kasbeck, a spire, the point of which is the highest of the whole chain of Caucasus, without excepting even Ell-Rouss. There was not before this exploit any estimate formed which approached the real height of this peak; and it results from their observations, that the perpendicular elevation of this mountain equals, if it does not exceed, that of the famous Mont Blanc.