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could establish a system of espionage among them; whenever they attempted to employ one of the natives as a spy, the man either trifled with them, or betrayed them. And this Turreau gives as one reason for laying waste the country with fire and sword, and exterminating the people:--but of this hereafter. Their zeal was carried to the utmost height; even this general, the agent of Robespierre and Bonaparte, compares it to that with which the crusaders were animated, and says that the defenders of the Throne and the Altar seemed to have taken the Preux of the days of chivalry for their models. They went to battle, he says, as to a festival ;--women and old men, and priests, and children exciting and partaking the rage of the soldiers:-he had himself seen boys of twelve years old slain in the ranks; and he may be believed, for M. de Puisaye affirms that Boisguay, who commanded a division of 3000 men among the Chouans, was but fifteen. M. Berthre de Bourniseaux denies the stories which he related of their superstition and gross credulity :-yet there are passages in the Marchioness's Memoirs which clearly show their proneness to superstition, and surely the cause in which they were engaged, the perpetual danger in which they lived, and the horrors which were continually before their eyes, were likely to inflame their imaginations. It is said that some of the priests promised them a miracle, and declared that all who were killed by the enemy in the cause of the holy church, should rise again from the dead on the third day. It is added that many women kept the bodies of their husbands and their sons unburied in expectation of this resurrection ;-and a yet wilder tale is told by Prudhomme, which some German poet, whose imagination revolts at no conceivable horror, might think a fit subject to be clothed in verse. A girl who had heard and believed this opinion, suddenly remembered it as she was watching by the death-bed of her lover. It occurred to her how happy it would be for both, if he could be made a partaker of this resurrection, he was too weak to leave his bed--oh that the Blues might find him there, and give him his crown of martyrdom! Some republican troops entered the village,-she fired at them from the window, and escaped by a back door into the woods. They broke open the doors and murdered the dying man. After some hours she returned,--her first design had been accomplished; and she closed the door carefully: The second day she placed provisions by the bed-side ;—the third day came and called him; and clung still to the hope of seeing him revive, till the fourth morning, when she could no longer resist the painful evidence of her senses.
This was a case of individual madness, the effect of love, grief, credulity, and insane hope. From such cases no general inferences can be drawn; but that the Vendeans were generally under the
VOL. IV. NO. XXIX.
influence of strong religious enthusiasm is certain. Man, who is by nature religious, always becomes superstitious in proportion as ke is ignorant or ill-instructed; and times of public calamity are always times of fanaticism. But however exalted the imagina. tions of this brave people may have been, and however extravagant their expectations of the visible interference of heaven, their earthly desires, if the monarchy should by their efforts be restored, indicate equal moderation and nobleness of mind. First they would have asked that the whole of the Bocage, which now made part of three provinces, should be formed into a separate province under the name of La Vendée,-a name which they now regarded with becoming pride; they would have entreated the king that he would be pleased once to honour it with his presence ;-that a corps of Vendeans might form part of his body guards ;-and that in memory of the war the white flag might always be hoisted upon the towers of all their churches. They desired no diminution of imposts, no exemption from military services, no peculiar privileges, but they would have solicited that some former plans for opening roads and rendering their streams navigable might be effected. Such was the recompense which the Vendeans would have asked if they had succeeded in overthrowing the jacobine tyranny, and placing the innocent Dauphin upon the throne of his murdered father. Shame be to the Bourbons if it be not accorded them now!
Berruyer was commander-in-chief of the republican forces, which did not exceed 20,000 men: he was appointed at the end of March, before which time there' had been no unity of command, and consequently no concert in their movements. Among the reinforcements which followed him was a corps raised in Paris, by the name of the conquerors of the Bastille: they displayed,' says M. Beauchaines
, great courage in this war; but unfortunately these intrepid revolutionists' had a most unbridled appetite for pillage ; it might have been said that they came less for the sake of fighting than of plundering; the rich man was always in their eyes an aristoèrat, whom they!might-strip without ceremony; so that the ParisCarriers returned laden with booty, the fruit of their robberies.' This is not the statement of a royalist writer. The Marseilles rabble, who were employed in this same dreadful service, left behind them a similar character: throughout the war they are said to have been as cowardly in battle as they were ferocious towards those who had no means of resistance. The rabble of all great cities will be thus far alike,--that in all of them the worst qualities of hunian nature will have had free scope, while the better seeds have perished for want of culture. Of such men the republican levies were in part composed; in párt they consisted of a widely
different race,-of men who had entered with heart and soul into the revolution, believing that it was the cause of liberty, of humanity, of all generous feelings, and all ennobling hopes. More willingly would these men have served upon the frontiers, where war was carried on with its old humanities. In La Vendée their principles were equally concerned, but widely different was the effect produced; for these principles which, to themselves at least, sarictified all their exertions against a foreign invader,and made the cause of military and of moral duty the same, when they were 'led against their own countrymen, produced all the heart-hardening feelings of contempt, hatred, and rancorous enmity; so that the war soon assumed a character of ferocity, of which even the former civil wars of France (the most atrocious upon record) afford but a faint prototype. There was also many in the republican armies who would more willingly have fought on the other side; but the government required their services,and they preferred acting as blind instruments in a cause which they inwardly disliked, to the more imminent hazard of joining the royalists. In the royalist army there was a want of military subordination, but perfect unity of principle and of feeling: the republicans were in the strangest state of intrigue and discord. The deputies of the Convention, and the commissioners from the constituted popular authorities, were continually interfering with the generals, opposing, controling, threatening, and denouncing them: among these men were some of the boldest apostles of anarchy and atheism; wretches who, while they have exhibited' to all posterity a proof of the fatal fruits which spring from such seeds, have entailed alsolan ineffaceable disgrace upon their country, and even upon human nature. The disease of the times had infected the army through all its ranks. Every man was intriguing against those above him, thinking that if his superiors were disgraced or guillotined, he should gain a step, and overlooking the probability that that step also would be a step towards the guillotine for himself.
Most of the generals owed their appointment to their connection with the Jacobine or Cordelier clubs, then rivalling each other in popularity and in extravagant wickedness. This was not the case with Quetineau. Quetineau, before the revolution, had served as a grenadier, in which rank Lescure remembered him, and knew him to be an inoffensive and well-intentioned man. He wished for a reform in the government; like the majority of his countrymen, he followed from conviction the popular cause, obtained promotion by his merits, and had left his corps in Belgium on leave, for the purpose of attending his own family affairs at Thouars. Here his character had made him many friends; the people made him commandant of the national guards by acclamation; the constituted
authorities wrote in his hehalf to the minister of war; and he was appointed general of division; he had not intrigued for this promotion, nor ever desired it, acknowledging always that he had not talents for a general. Greater talents, however, would not have been of more avail in the circumstances wherein he was placed ; at Bressuire, his disorderly troops had refused to execute the orders which he gave for defending the place; he retreated thence to Thouars, and then comunitted the error of supposing himself in safety; the next day he was informed that the royalists were advancing to attack him there, and prepared for defence when it was too late. The town is strongly situated, and defended on the side of the Bocage by the river from which it derives its name, the water of which is kept up by numerous mill-dams, so that it can scarcely, at any point, be forded. There are four points where it might be crossed by bridges or by a ford; all these Quetineau occupied ; but his dispositions were precipitately made and ill executed. Lescure and Roche Jaquelein commenced the attack at the bridge of Vrine, half a league from the town; after six hours feeble cannonade, the Vendeans began to want powder, which they had spent to little purpose. Roche Jaquelein went in search of a supply,and Lescure, being left alone with the command, perceived that the enemy seemed in confusion, and he seized a bayonet and rushed forward to the middle of the bridge, calling upon the troops to follow him ; the musket shot and grape were flying too fast around, and not a man followed; he went back to summon them, again exhorted them, and a second time set the example; his clothes were shot through in many places, and danger had more effect upon their minds than example. A third time he repeated the perilous experiment; one peasant followed him. Roche Jaquelein andanother officer(LaForêt)arrived at the moment and came to join him; they crossed the bridge, and Lescure leapt over the enemy’sintrenchment-thepeasant received awound: RocheJaquelein and La Forêt got over unhurt; the troops then came rushing on to support them, and the passage was won. Bonchamp at the same time won the ford. They advanced against the town, and the peasants began to demolish the old wall with pick-axes : the work was too slow. Roche Jaquelein, by help of a man's shoulders, got upon the top, in a place where it was most in decay, and with his hands threw down the stones. In this way a kind of breach was made ; which shows how ill the defence must have been conducted. Meantime the other two divisions came up, and Quetineau capitųlated with D’Elbée at the moment when Roche Jaquelein and Lescure had forced an entrance. No excesses were committed : the peasants demanded food and wine, and were satisfied: they rang The bells, went to church to return thanks, and amused themselves by burning the Tree of Liberty and the papers of the administration,-an employment which, of all others, seemed to afford them the most delight. Lescure took Quetineau to his own quarters. I saw your shutters closed, Monsieur, said the republican general, when I left Bressuire : you thought you were forgotten, but it was not for want of memory that I left you at liberty. Lescure thanked him for his humanity, and told him he was at liberty to go where he pleased : 'but,' added he, ' I advise you to remain with us : your opinions are different, and therefore you will not join us, but you may remain a prisoner on parole, and you shall be well treated: if you return to the republicans they will not forgive you for this ca. pitulation, indispensable as it is: what I propose is an, asylum against their vengeance. Quetineau replied, 'that if he followed this advice he should be deemed a traitor ; that he had done his duty, and should be able to prove it; and that it would dishonour him if it could be supposed he had acted otherwise. He had sufficient reason to repent his confidence in his own innocence, and in the justice of the revolutionary government. Even Phelippeax, whose name will be honourably remembered for his conduct con cerning La Vendée, accused him of conspiring with the royalists, and betraying his trust. He was delivered over to the bloody tribunal which never spared, and his name appears among the 18,613 persons who were guillotined by the National Convention. Start not, reader, in unbelief there is no mistake in the figures. 18,613 persons were guillotined in France between the 21st September, 1792, and the 25th October, 1795; and even this is but a small part of the judicial murders which were committed during that time! A dictionary has been published of the persons who suffered death : the list contains merely their names, designa tions, and the date of their execution--and it fills two octavo volumes of 500 pages each, closely printed in double columns.
Twenty caissons, twelve pieces of cannon, and six thousand muskets, fell into the royalists' hands; many of the soldiers joined them, and, what was of more importance, some excellent officers gladly took the opportunity of acting in conformity to their principles. There was so many men in the state waiting only for an occasion of taking the royal side, that the long duration of the jacobines is more to be imputed to the dereliction of duty on the part of the emigrants, and the timidity or imbecility of the princes' councils, than to all the exertions of the revolutionary rulers, or even the enthusiasm of their adherents. From Thouars they marched upon Parthenay, which was evacuated at their approach; they next attacked and won La Châtaigneraie, which was defended by three or four thousand men under General Chalbos. Some disorders were committed here, in which it is not improbable that the