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and admission within it. But here they experienced a CHAP. check. The gates remained closed against them—the_ governor of the fortress denounced them as rebels—the 1820. expected co-operation from within did not make its appearance, and the two chiefs were obliged to remain encamped outside, surrounded with all the precautions of a hostile enemy. The intelligence of this revolt excited the greatest alarm
65. at Madrid, and the Government at first deemed their Vigorous cause hopeless. The next day, however, brought more adopted consoling accounts — that Cadiz remained faithful, and against the a majority of the troops might still be relied on to act against the insurgents. Recovering from their panic, the Government took the most vigorous measures to crush the insurrection. General Freyre was despatched from Madrid at the head of thirteen thousand men hastily collected from all quarters, upon whom it was thought reliance could be placed, and he rapidly reached the Isle of Leon, where the insurgent troops, to the number of ten thousand, lay intrenched. A part of them, however, joined the insurgents, the force of whom was thus raised to ten thousand men. By the approach of the royalist army, however, they found themselves in a very critical situation, placed between the fortress of Cadiz on the one side and the troops from Madrid on the other, and in a manner besieged themselves in the lines of the besiegers. Martignac, They published proclamations and addresses in profusion, * Ann. Hist.
iii. 392,393; but without obtaining any material accession of strength Ann. Reg. beyond what had at first joined them ;1 and the defection 223. and disquietude began to creep over them which invari
no woors **; 184 185. VII.
*“Notre Espagne touchait à sa destruction, et votre ruine aurait entraîné celle de la Patrie: vous étiez destinés à la mort, plutôt pour délivrer le Gouvernement de l'effroi que votre courage lui impose, que pour faire la conquête des colonies, devenue impossible. En attendant vos familles restaient dans l'esclavage le plus honteux, sous un Gouvernement arbitraire et tyrannique, qui dispose à son gré des propriétés, de l'existence, et de la liberté des malheureux Espagnols. Ce Gouvernement devait détruire la nation, et finir par se détruire lui-même ; il n'est pas possible de la souffrir plus longtemps.- Violent et faible à la fois, il ne peut inspirer que l'indignation ou le mépris ; et pour que la
CHAP. ably pervade an insurgent array when decisive success
- does not at once crown their efforts. 1820.
Unable to endure this protracted state of suspense, and 66. Capture of fearful of its effect on the minds of the soldiers, Riego the arsenal,
nd expedi- directed an attack on the arsenal of the Caraccas, an imtion of Riego into portant station on an island in the bay of Cadiz, which the inte
was taken by a detachment under the command of Quiroga. Jan. 12. By this success, a large quantity of arms and ammunition
fell into their hands, as well as a seventy-four gun-ship laden with powder ; and they rescued from the dungeons of that place a number of liberals in confinement. Several attacks were afterwards made on the dykes which led from the opposite sides of the bay to Cadiz, but they all failed before the formidable fortifications by which they were defended ; and though several émeutes were attempted in the fortress, they all failed of success. Meanwhile Freyre's troops were drawn round them on the outside, and effectually cut them off from all communication with the mainland of Andalusia ; and the troops became discouraged from a perception of their isolated position, and the long inactivity to which they had been exposed. To relieve it, and endeavour to rouse the population in their rear, Quiroga, who had been invested with the supreme command, detached Riego with a movable
column of fifteen hundred men into the interior of the proJan. 27. vince. They set out on 27th January, and without diffi
culty passed the river near Chictana, and reached Algesiraz Jan. 29. in safety, where they proclaimed the constitution amidst
the loud acclamations of a prodigious concourse of inhabitants. After remaining five days, however, in that town, Patrie soit heureuse, le Gouvernement doit inspirer la confiance, l'amour, et le respect. Soldats ! nous allons employer pour notre bien, et pour celui de nos frères, les armes qui ont assuré l'indépendance de la nation contre le pouvoir de Buonaparte: l'entreprise est facile, et glorieuse ! Existe-t-il un soldat Espagnol qui puisse s'y opposer? Non ! dans les rangs même de ceux que le Gouvernement s'efforce de rassembler, vous trouverez des frères qui s'uniront à vous ; et si quelques-uns assez vils osaient tourner leurs armes contre vous, qu'ils périssent comme des satellites de la tyrannie, indignes du nom d'Espagnols.”— ANTONIO QUIROGA, Général-en-chef de l'Armée Nationale, 5 Jan. 1820. Annuaire Historique, üi. 390, 391.
he found that shouts and huzzas were all that the in- CHAP.
ou Riego, 19, with acclamations wherever he went, it had met with no 26; Biog:
Univ.lxxix. real assistance ; the people cheered, but did not join 118, 119;
Ann. Hist. them; and, to use the words of Riego's aide-de-camp, iii. 396, 397. “ All applauded : none followed them.”1
Meanwhile his associate, Quiroga, was the victim of the most cruel anxieties. Weakened by the detachment Its defeat of the force under Riego, and besieged in his intrenched an camp before Cadiz, he daily found his situation more critical, and his soldiers evinced unequivocal symptoms of discouragement from the inactivity in which they had been retained since their revolt, and the want of any succour from the troops with which they were surrounded. He sent, in consequence, orders to Riego to return to the lines in the island of Leon, but it had become no longer possible for him to do so. Riego was closely followed by a light column under the orders of O'Donnell ; and finding that the population of the country were not inclined to join him, and that his corps was daily diminishing by desertion, he evacuated Malaga, and bent his steps towards the Cordilleras, with a view to throwing him- March 11. self into the Sierra-Morena. He crossed the Guadal- de l'Expe
2 Relation quiver by the bridge of Cordova, and directing his steps di towards the hills, at length reached Bien-Venida on the 60; Biog:
Ho Univ.lxxix. 11th March with only three hundred followers, destitute 119; Ann.
Hist. iii. of everything, and in the last stage of exhaustion and 399, 400. discouragement.
The intelligence of the disasters of Riego, which reached the Isle of Leon in spite of all the precautions which the Perilous
position of generals of the revolutionary army there could take to Quiroga in
no the Isle of intercept it, completed the discouragement of the troops Leon. of the revolutionary army there assembled. Mutually
tion at Co runna, and
CHAP. fearful of defection, Quiroga and General Freyre had
long ceased to combat each other, but by proclamations 1820.
and invitations to the soldiers on either side to abandon their colours and range themselves under the banners of their opponents. But in this wordy warfare the royalists had the advantage ; the words of honour and loyalty did not resound in vain in Spanish ears, and although defection was experienced on both sides, it was soon apparent that the balance was decidedly against the liberal host.
Their numbers were at last reduced to four thousand men ; Ann, Hist, while their opponents, under Freyre, independent of the iii. 401,402; Biog. Univ. garrison of Cadiz, were three times that number ; and this lxxix. 119, 120; Mar" little band was so discouraged as to be incapable of 187, 188. attempting any of those bold steps which alone, in a pro
tracted war of rebellion, can reinstate a falling cause. 1
But while the cause of the revolution seemed to be rec- thus sinking, and to have become well-nigh hopeless in
the south, the flame burst forth simultaneously in several varre. other quarters, and at length involved the whole Penin
sula in conflagration. The blow struck at Cadiz resounded through the whole of Spain. Everywhere the movement was confined to the officers of the army and a few citizens in the seaport towns; but in them it took place so simultaneously as to reveal the existence of a vast conspiracy,
directed by a central authority which embraced the whole Feb. 21. Peninsula. On the 21st February, the day after Vane
gaz, the new Captain-general of Galicia, had arrived at Corunna, an insurrection broke out among the officers of that fortress, who surprised Vanegaz, when disarmed and incapable of making any resistance; and on his refusal to place himself at the head of the movement, made him a prisoner, and conducted him with all his staff to the Fort of St Antonio, where they were placed in confinement. The Constitution of 1812 was immediately proclaimed, the gates closed, the drawbridges raised, and the revolution effected in an hour, without any resistance. A provisional junta was established; the prisons were broken open,
and their inmates liberated ; a sergeant pamed Chacon, CHAP. who had denounced Porlier, massacred, and his widow, sobbing with grief, carried in triumph amidst revolutionary shouts through the streets. The insurrection spread to Ferrol, where the military revolted, and proclaimed the constitution on the 23d ; Vigo declared on the 24th ; Feb. 23.
Feb. 24, Pontevedra on the 26th; and at the end of a week, with the exception of St Iago, where the troops remained steady, the whole of Galicia had hoisted the standard of the constitution. Saragossa shortly after followed the Feb. 24. example, and there the insurrection assumed a more serious aspect by being under the direction of Don Martin de Garay, the former Finance Minister, who had been dis- Feb. 25. graced. Mina, at the same time, reappeared on the iii.402,407; frontiers of Navarre, which he entered with a few followers. He immediately proclaimed the constitution, Memorias and being joined by some soldiers, made himself master Espoz y. of the important cannon foundry at Aizzabal, and lent to 255, 269;
Martignac, the cause of insurrection the aid of a name which still i. 188, 189. spoke to the hearts of the patriotic throughout Spain. 1
The intelligence of these repeated and general defections excited the utmost consternation in the Court of Revolution Madrid ; and the conduct of the King and Cabinet dhe kadrid evinced that vacillation which, as it is the invariable accepts the mark of weakness in presence of danger, so it is the usual tion.
March 7. precursor of the greatest public calamities. At first the most vigorous measures were resolved on. General Elio was recalled from Valencia to organise the means of defence in the capital, and a corps hastily assembled to move against the insurgents in Galicia, of which the Conde d'Abisbal was appointed commander. But vain are all attempts of government to make head against treason when their own officers and soldiers are the traitors. Unknown to them, the Conde d’Abisbal bad already concerted with the chiefs of the conspiracy at Madrid, and with his brother Alexander O'Donnell, who commanded a regiment stationed at Ocaña, the plan of a general