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uncovered. The line of battle was per- five thousand men killed, wounded, or pendicular to the causeway of Namur, prisoners, without reckoning twenty Quatre Bras, and in the direction of thousand men, who disbanded themSombref to that of Gosselies; the point selves and ravaged the banks of the of Quatre Bras was perpendicular be, Meuse to Liege. The guard and the hind the middle of the line. It is evi sixth corps suffered no loss; but the dent that Marshal Blucher did not ex. fourth corps and General Excelmans' pect to be attacked on that day; he corps of cavalry, as also that of General thought there would be time to com Pajol, suffered considerably. The loss plete the assembling of his troops, and sustained by the third corps was by no that he would be supported on his right means so great. Girard's division of by the Anglo-Belgian army, which was the second corps was that which sufto march on Quatre Bras by the cause- fered most. Tlie total loss was nearly ways of Brussels and Nivelles on the six thousand nine hundred and fifty 17th.
men killed or wounded. Many of the At three o'clock in the afternoon, enemy's generals were killed or woundthe third corps attacked the village of ed. Marshal Blucher was thrown down St. Amand. In a quarter of an hour by a charge of cuirassiers, and tramafterwards, the fourth corps attacked pled on by the horses; but the cuirasthat of Ligny, while Marshal Grouchy siers continued their charge without drove back the left of the Prussian seeing him. It was already night; by army. All the positions and houses which circumstance this officer, bruised situated on the right of the ravine were and maimed, succeeded in saving him- . carried, and the enemy's army thrown self.* on the left bank. The remainder of the BATTLE OF QUATRE BRAS. third corps of the Prussian army ar The Prince of Orange, whose headrived during the battle, through Som- quarters were at Braine le Compte, did bref; this increased the force of the not receive the Duke of Wellington's enemy's army to ninety thousand men. order to unite his troops before dayThe French army, including the sixth break on the 16th. He then marched corps, which remained constantly in with the second brigade of the third reserve, was seventy thousand men; Belgian division to Quatre Bras, to less than sixty thousand men engaged support one of the brigades commanded the enemy. The village of Ligny was by Prince Bernard of Saxony, who, taken and retaken four times. It was after having defended Frasne, had here that Count Gerard acquired such taken post between Quatre Bras and imperishable glory, displaying no less Genappe. Since the 15th, the Prince intrepidity than talent. The attack of Orange had remained on this imwas more feeble than St. Amand, which portant position all the morning, with was also taken and retaken; but it eight or nine thousand Belgians, or was carried by General Girard, who, troops of Nassau, infantry, cavalry, having received an order to advance by and artillery. He knew that all the the left of the ravine, with his division, cantonments of the Anglo-Belgian army the third of the second corps, mani- had moved, and directed their march fested that intrepidity, of which he had on Quatre Bras, by the roads of Brusgiven so many examples in his previous sels and Nivelles. He also felt the immilitary career. He overthrew all who portance of this position ; for if the attempted to oppose his march, by the Allies lost it, all their cantonments, bayonet, and had taken possession of coming by the causeway of Nivelles, half the village when he fell mortally would be obliged to effect their juncwounded.
tion by the cross road, and in the rear All the reserves of the enemy were of Genappe. If, therefore, Marshal Ney repulsed by the bayonet, the centre of had executed his orders, and marched ·his line was pierced, forty pieces of on Quatre Bras with his forty-three cannon, eight colours or standards, a thousand men, at day-break on the great number of prisoners, were the 16th, he would have taken possession trophies of this day. Marshal Grouchy, of this position, and easily routed the Generals Excelmans and Pajol, excited enemy's division with his numerous admiration by their intrepidity. Ge- cavalry and light artillery; what is neral Monthion was, in the night, still more, he would have been enabled charged with the pursuit of the Prussian left wing. In the official reports, He never recovered from these wounds, the enemy estimated his loss at twenty- and died in 1819,-Editor.
to attack the divisions of the English now six o'clock, and therefore too late. army on their march, and while iso. However, the Marshal fought with his lated on the causeways of Nivelles and usual intrepidity, and his troops coBrussels.
vered themselves with glory. The At noon, this Marshal, having re- enemy, although double as to infantry, ceived the fresh orders which the Em- continuing to be very inferior in artilperor sent him from Fleurus, marched lery and cavalry, could not make any with three divisions of infantry of the progress, but he profited by the wood second corps, a division of light caval. which flanked his position, and kept it ry, and a division of Kellerinan's cui- until night. Marshal Ney took up his rassiers, in all, sixteen thousand infan- head-quarters at Frasne, a thousand try, three thousand cavalry, and forty- toises from Quatre Bras, with his line four pieces of cannon, (twenty-one or of battle, at the distance of two cannon twenty-two thousand men). He left shots from the enemy's army. He was the first corps, consisting of sixteen joined by the first corps, commanded thousand infantry, General Lefebvre by Count d'Erlon ; the arrival of which Desnouettes's division of light cavalry was retarded half an hour only, by the of the guard, and a division of Keller movement towards St. Amand. The man's cuirassiers, forming a total of loss of the Anglo-Belgian army was by sixteen thousand infantry, four thou. the official returns, estimated at nine sand five hundred cavalry, and sixty. thousand men. The loss of the French four pieces of cannon in reserve before army was three thousand four hundred Gosselies, to observe Fleurus and secure men. This disproportion of losses can his retreat. His skirmishers com- easily be accounted for; the Anglomenced firing at two, but it was not Belgian army remained en masse, from until three o'clock, when the cannonade three o'clock in the afternoon till eight of the battle of Ligny was heard, that in the evening, under the grape shot of he fairly attacked the enemy. The fifty pieces of cannon, which did not Prince of Orange, and his division, was cease firing the whole of that time.. very soon overthrown; but it was sup- The Emperor visited the field of ported by the division of the Duke of battle, and caused every assistance to Brunswick, and the fifth English divi. be given to the wounded. The loss of sion, which arrived in great haste and the Prussians was enormous. Six of bad order. These two divisions had their dead bodies were seen for one of set out from Brussels at ten o'clock in the French: a great number of the the morning, and marched eight leagues; wounded who had received no medical they had neither artillery nor cavalry. aid were succoured ; all the pages, and The contest was warmly renewed; the many officers having remained to attend enemy had the superiority as to num- them. . bers, for the second line of Marshal BATTLE OF MOUNT ST. JEAN. Ney was three leagues in the rear; but During the night, the Emperor gave the artillery and cavalry of the French all the necessary orders for the battle of were much more numerous. These next day, although every thing indicated troops, repulsed like those of Nassau, that it would not take place. During left many dead on the field, and the four days that hostilities had conamongst others, the reigning Prince of tinued, he had, by the most skilful maBrunswick. The forty-second, or High- nouvres, surprised the enemy's armies, land regiment of Picton's division, gained a brilliant victory, and separated having formed into a square to sustain the two armies. This was much for his a charge of cuirassiers, was broken glory, but not enough for the situation through and cut to pieces; its colonel in which he was placed. The three killed, and colours taken. The French hours delay which the left (under Ney) sharp-shooters had already reached the had experienced in its movements, prefarm of Quatre Bras, when the first' vented him from attacking, as he indivision of the English guards, and tended, the Anglo-Belgian army, in the Alten's division, the 3rd, arrived, afternoon of the 17th; which would marching in double quick time, on the have crowned his campaign. As things causeway of Nivelles. These divisions now were, it was probable that the Duke were also without artillery or cavalry. of Wellington and Marshal Blucher It was then that Marshal Ney felt the would profit by the night to cross the want of his second line. He sent for forest of Soignes, and unite before Brusit; but the troops could not reach the sels; after this junction, which might field of battle before eight; and it was be effected before nine o'clock in the
morning, the position of the French even to the most obvious rules of war, .army would become extremely criti. than to remain in the position which cal! The two armies would then be he occupied. He had in his rear the reinforced by all the forces left in their defiles of the forest of Soignes, so that, rear: six thousand English were dis. if beaten, retreat was impossible! embarked at Ostend within a few days; The French troops bivouacked in the these troops returned from America. midst of a deep mud, and the chicers The French army could not hazard thought it impossible to give battl? on crossing the forest of Soignes, to en the following day; the grounds we're counter more than double its force, so moistened that the artillery and the already in position; nevertheless, the cavalry could not possibly manœuvre other armies, Russian, Austrian, Bava. in them, and it would require twelve rian, &c. were about to pass the Rhine, hours of fine weather to dry them. The and march on the Marne; while the dawn having begun to appear, the Emfifth corps, left for the defence of Alsace, peror returned to his head-quarters, full was only twenty thousand strong! of satisfaction at the great fault com
Full of meditation on these impor- mitted by the enemy's General; though tant subjects, the Emperor went out on very apprehensive that the bad weafoot, at one o'clock in the morning, ther would prevent him from profiting accompanied by his Grand Marshal; by it. But the atmosphere became more his design was to follow the English clear, and at five o'clock he perceived army in its retreat, and to endeavour some feeble rays of that sun, which, to attack it, notwithstanding the obscu- before setting, was to witness the ruin rity of the night, as soon as it should of his opponents—the British oligarchy commence its march. He visited the would be overthrown !-France was · whole line of main guards. The forest about to rise again,-more glorious,
of Soignes appeared like one continued powerful, and grand than ever!
à brigade of English cavalry, which just entered, 6 if the Duke of Welling- went to take position on the left, at the ton were simple enough to wait for your
village of Obain. Two Belgian deser- Majesty ; but I come to announce that ters, who had just quitted their regi. his columns are already in full retreat, ment, reported that their army were and are disappearing in the forest of preparing for battle, and that no retro- Soignes.” You have seen badly,” grade movement had taken place; that replied the Emperor ; 6 it is too late, Belgium prayed for the success of the he would expose himself to certain ruin Emperor ; while the English and the by such a step; he has thrown the dice Prussians were equally unpopular there. they are now for us!!!" At this
The British General could have done moment officers of artillery, who had nothing more contrary to the interests rode over the plain, stated that the of his party and of his nation, or to the artillery could manœuvre, although general spirit of this campaign, and with difficulty, which would be greatly MONTHLY MAG. No. 342.
diminished in an another hour. The battery of light artillery on the cause Emperor mounted immediately, and way of Nivelles. The second corps, went to the skirmishes opposite La Haye under the orders of General Reille, ocSainte, again reconnoitred the enemy's 'cupied the space comprehended beline, and directed the General of Engi. tween the causeway of Nivelles and neers, Haxo, a confidential officer, to that of Charleroi, embracing an extent approach it nearer in order to ascertain of from nine hundred to one thousand whether any redoubts were thrown up, toises; the division of Prince Jerome or entrenchments made; the General keeping the left, near the causeway of soon returned to report that he had Nivelles and the wood of Hougoumont; observed no trace of fortifications. After General Foy the centre, and General some moments' reflection, the Emperor Bachelu the right, which extended to dictated the order of battle, which was the causeway of Charleroi, . near the taken down by two Generals, seated on farm of La Belle Alliance. Each divi. the ground. The aide-de-camps took sion of infantry formed two lines; the it to the different corps, already under second at thirty toises from the first, arms, full of impatience and of ardour. having its artillery in front, and its The army now moved forward, march parks of artillery in the rear, near the ing in eleven columns.
causeway of Nivelles.' The third coThese eleven columns were to be lumn, formed by the first corps, and arranged as follows; viz.-four to form commanded by Lieutenant - General the first line, four the second, and three Count d'Erlon, formed its left towards the third. The four columns of the La Belle Alliance, on the right of the first line were, that of the left, formed causeway leading to Charleroi, and its by the cavalry of the second corps; the right opposite the farm of La Haye, second, formed by three divisions of where the enemy's left was posted. infantry of the second corps; the third, Each division of infantry formed two by the four divisions of infantry of the lines, the artillery filling up the interfirst corps ; the fourth, by the light vals of the brigades. The light cavalry, cavalry of the first corps.
which formed the fourth column, spread At nine o'clock, the heads of the four to the right, observing La Haye and columns forming the first line arrived Frichermont, and having small parties where they had to form : at the same to watch the enemies flankers; the artime were perceived, at unequal dis- tillery was placed on its right.. tances, the seven other columns, which The Emperor now went through the descended from the heights; they were ranks; it would be difficult to express in march; the trumpets and drums the enthusiasm which animated all the sounded 6 to the field, and the bands soldiers; the infantry elevated their struck up airs which recalled the me- caps on their bayonets; the cuirassiers, mory of a hundred victories to the dragoons, and light cavalry, their helminds of the soldiery :-the earth' mets on their sabres. Victory appeared seemed proud of being trodden by such certain; the old soldiers, who had been intrepid combatants! The spectacle present at so many engagements, adwas really magnificent; and the enemy, mired this new order of battle; they so placed as to be able to distinguish endeavoured to penetrate the ulterior every invidual, must have been also views of their general, discussing the struck with the sight :the army would point and manner of the attack. Meaneven have appeared double its real while, the Emperor gave his last orders, number, viewed from Mont St. Jean. and proceeded at the head of his guard,
The eleven columns formed with so to the summit of the six W's, on the much precision that no confusion what heights of Rossome, where he disever arose, each occupying the place mounted. From this spot, he had a designated for it in the mind of the complete view of the two armies, as Chief: never had such large masses the prospect extended far to the right moved with so much facility. The and left of the field of battle. light cavalry of the second corps, which A battle is a dramatic action, which formed the first column of the left of has a commencement, a middle, and an the first line; formed in three lines, end. The order of battle which the two across the causeway from Nivelles to armies assume, the first movements Brussels, nearly at the height of the which are made to engage, may be callfirst woods at Hougoumont, scouring ed the opening scene; the counter all the plain by the left, having main movements, made by the party attacked, guards near Braine-la-Leude, and its form the under plot; this leads to new
incidents; these bring on the crisis, scoured the country between Wavres from which proceeds the catastrophe. and Planchenoit. This hussar was the As soon as the attack by the centre of bearer of a letter ; he was also very inthe French army was unmasked, the telligent, and gave all the information enemy's general would execute counter that was required. The column permovements, either by his wings or be- ceived at St. Lambert, was the advanced hind his line, to make a diversion, or guard of the Prussian General, Bulow, hasten to the succour of the point at- who was coming up with thirty thoutacked. None of these movements sand men ; this was the fourth Prussian could escape the experienced eye of the corps which had not been engaged at French Monarch, from the central posi. Ligny. The letter was in fact the antion in which he placed himself; while nouncement of its arrival, and a request he had all the reserve at hand, to send from Bulow to the Duke of Wellington them where the urgency of the circum- for ulterior orders. The hussar said, stances might happen to require their that he had been at Wavres in the presence.
morning; that the three other Prussian Marshal Ney, obtained the honour corps were encamped there ; that they of commanding the grand attack of the had passed the night between the 17th centre; it could not be confided to a and 18th in that town: that there were braver man, or one more accustomed to no French troops before them; that he this species of service. He sent one of supposed the French had marched on his aide-de-camps, to say that every Planchenoit; that a patrole of his regithing was ready, and that he only wait- ment had during the night approached ed for the signal. Before giving it, the within two leagues of Wavres, without Emperor wished to throw a last glance meeting any French corps whatever. over the whole field of battle, and per- The Duke of Dalmatia immediately disceived, in the direction of St. Lambert, patched the intercepted letter, and the a dark mass, which appeared to him report of the hussar to Marshal Grouchy, like troops. Upon this, he asked the to whom he reiterated the order to march Adjutant General what he saw near St. without a moment's delay on St. LamLambert? “ I think, I see five or six bert, and to take General Bulow's corps thousand men," replied the General, in the rear. It was now eleven o'clock, " it is probably a detachment from the officer had only to proceed four or Grouchy.” All the glasses of the staff five leagues to reach Marshal Grouchy, were now fixed in that direction. The and he promised to be with that officer weather was rather foggy. As it gene- in an hour. By the last communication rally happens on such occasions, some received from the Marshal, it was known maintained, that there were no troops, that he meant to march on Wavres at but merely trees which were perceived; day-break; but from Gembloux, where while others said, columns were in he was, to Wavres, the distance is only position there; some, that they were three leagues. Whether he had received troops in march. In this state of uncer- the orders which had been dispatched to tainty, and without further deliberation, him in the night from the imperial he sent for Lieutenant General Daumont, quarters or not, he should most certainly and ordered him to scour the right with have been engaged at this very time behis divisions of light cavalry, and that fore Wavres. Those who reconnoitred of General Subervie; also to communi. in that direction saw no troops; not a cate promptly with the troops which gun was heard. A short time after, were moving on St. Lambert, to effect a General Daumont sent to say, that some junction if they belonged to Marshal well mounted scouts that preceded him, Grouchy, and keep them in check if had met patroles of the enemy in the they were enemies." These three thou- vicinity of St, Lambert; and that there sand cavalry had only to make a wheel was no doubt of the troops which were to the right by fours to be out of the seen there being enemies; that he had lines ; they marched rapidly, and in sent chosen patroles in various direc-the greatest order, to a distance of three tions, to communicate with Marshal thousand toises, and formed in line of Grouchy, for the purpose of conveying. battle on the right of the army. . orders and reports.
A quarter of an hour afterwards, an The Emperor.immediately caused an officer of chasseurs brought in a Prussian order to be given to Count Lobau to black hussar, who had been just made cross the causeway of Charleroi, by a prisoner by the scouts of a flying co- change of direction to the right by dilumn of three hundred chasseurs, which yişions, and to support the light cavalry