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The marksman's fatal post was made,
And Blenheim's name be new;
And Field of Waterloo.
For laurels from the hand of Death
Till time shall cease to run;
Who fought with Wellington !
The fisher-skiff, and barge that bears a court, Still wafting onward all to one dark silent port ;
Stern tide of Time! through what mysterious
1 The Poet's friend, Colonel Sir William De Lancey, mar
To where the groves of Hongomont on high ried the beutiful daughter of Sir James Hall, Bart., in April
Rear in the west their venerable head, 1815, and received his mortal wound on the 18th of June.
And cover with their shade the countless dead. See Captain B. Hall's affecting narrative in the first series of his “ Fragments of Voyages and Travels," vol. ii. p.
“But wouldst thou tread this celebrated ground, 2 Colonel Miller, of the Guards--son to Sir William Miller,
And trace with understanding eyes a scene Lord Glenlee. When mortally wounded in the attack on the
Above all other fields of war renown'd, Bois de Bossa, he desired to see the colors of the regiment
From western Hougomont thy way begin ; once more ere he died. They were waved over his head, and the expiring officer declared himself satisfied,
There was our strength on that side, and there first,
In all its force, the storm of battle burst." 3 " Colonel Cameron, of Fassiefern, so often distinguished
SOUTHEY in Lord Wellington's despatches from Spain, fell in the action at Quatre Bras (16th June, 1815), while leading the 92d or
Mr. Southey adds, in a note on these verses :-—"So importGordon Highlanders, to charge a body of cavalry, supported by
ant a battle, perhaps, was never before fought within so small infantry."-Paul's Letters, p. 91.
an extent of ground. I computed the distance between Hou+ Colonel the Honorable Sir Alexander Gordon, brother to
gomont and Popelot at three miles; in a straight line it might the Earl of Aberdeen, who has erected a pillar on the spot probably not exceed two and a half. Our guide was very where he fell by the side of the Duke of Wellington.
much displeased at the name which the battle had obtained & " Beyond these points the fight extended not,
in England, - Why call it the battle of Waterloo ?' he said ; Small theatre for such a tragedy !
Call it Hougomont, call it La Haye Sainte, call it Popelot-. Its breath scarce more, from eastern Popelot
any thing but Waterloo.'"
"'--Pilgrimage to Waterloo.
Well hast thou stood, my Country !—the brave Now, Island Empress, wave thy crest on high, fight
And bid the banner of thy Patron flow, Hast well maintain'd through good report and Gallant Saint George, the flower of Chivalry, In thy just cause and in thy native might, For thou hast faced, like him, a dragon foe, And in Heaven's grace and justice constant still; And rescued innocence from overthrow, Whether the banded prowess, strength, and skill And trampled down, like him, tyrannic might, Of half the world against thee stood array'd, And to the gazing world may’st proudly show Or when, with better views and freer will, The chosen emblem of thy sainted Knight,
Beside thee Europe's noblest drew the blade, Who quelld devouring pride, and vindicated right. Each emulous in arms the Ocean Queen to aid.
Yet 'mid the confidence of just renown, Well art thou now repaid-though slowly rose, Renown dear-bought, but dearest thus acquired, And struggled long with mists thy blaze of Write, Britain, write the moral lesson down: fame,
"Tis not alone the heart with valor fired, While like the dawn that in the orient glows The discipline so dreaded and admired, On the broad wave its earlier lustre came;' In many a field of bloody conquest known; Then eastern Egypt saw the growing flame, -Such may by fame be lured, by gold be hiredAnd Maida's myrtles gleam'd beneath its ray, 'Tis constancy in the good cause alone, Where first the soldier, stung with generous Best justifies the meed thy valiant sons have won.
shame, Rivali'd the heroes of the wat’ry way, [away. And wash'd in foemen's gore unjust reproach END OF THE FIELD OF WATERLOO.
is one, indeed, in which he illustrates what he then thought Buonaparte's poorness of spirit in adversity, which always struck me as pre-eminently characteristic of Scott's manner of interweaving, both in prose and verse, the moral energies with analogous natural description, and combining thought with imagery :
1 MS._“On the broad ocean first its lustre came."
2 In the Life of Sir W. Scott, vol. 8., pp. 99-104, the reader will find a curious record of minute alterations on this poem, suggested, while it was proceeding through the press, by the printer and the bookseller, with the author's good-natured replies, sometimes adopting, sometimes rejecting what was proposed.
3". The Field of Waterloo' was published before the end of October, in 8vo; the profits of the first edition being the anthor's contribution to the fund raised for the relief of the widows and children of the soldiers slain in the battle. This piece appears to have disappointed those most disposed to sympathize with the anthor's views and feelings. The descent is indeed heavy from his Bannockburn to his Waterloo : the presence, or all but visible reality of what his dreams cher ished, seems to have overawed bis imagination, and tamed it into a weak pomposity of movement. The burst of pure native enthusiasm upon the Scottish heroes that fell around the Duke of Wellington's person, bears, however, the broadest marks of . The Mighty Minstrel :'
Saw gallant Miller's fading eye
Die like the offspring of Lochiel,' &c.-
Plies the hook'd staff and shorten'd scythe.-P. 503. The reaper in Flanders carries in his left hand a stick with an iron hook, with which he collects as much grain as he can cut at one sweep with a short scythe, which he holds in his right hand. They carry on this double process with great spirit and dexterity.
NOTE B. Pale Brussels! then what thoughts were thine.-P. 504.
It was affirmed by the prisoners of war, that Bonaparte bad promised his army, in case of victory, twenty-four hours' plunder of the city of Brussels.
NOTE O. " On! On/" was still his stern exclaim.-P. 505. The characteristic obstinacy of Napoleon was never more fully displayed than in what we may be permitted to hope will prove the last of his fields. He would listen to no advice, and allow of no obstacles. An eye-witness has given the following account of his demeanor towards the end of the action:
“It was near seven o'clock ; Bonaparte, who till then had remained upon the ridge of the bill whence he could best behold what passed, contemplated with a stern countenance, the scene of this horrible slaughter. The more that obstacles seemed to multiply, the more his obstinacy seemed to increase. He became indignant at these unforeseen difficulties; and, far from fearing to push to extremities an army whose confidence in him was boundless, he ceased not to pour down fresh troops, and to give orders to march forwardto charge with the bayonet-to carry by storm. repeatedly informed, from different points, that the day went against him, and that the troops seemed to be disordered ; to which he only replied,
-En-avant! En-avant !' “One general sent to inform the Emperor that he was in a position which he could not maintain, because it was com manded by a battery, and requested to know, at the same time, in what way he should protect his division from the murderous fire of the English artillery. “Let him storm the battery,' replied Bonaparte, and turned his back on the aidede-camp who brought the message."- Relation de la Battaille de Mont-St-Jean. Par un Témoin Oculaire. Paris, 1815, 8vo
led to an idea that Napoleon was charging in person. But the guards were led on by Ney ; nor did Bonaparte approach nearer the scene of action than the spot already mentioned, which the rising banks on each side rendered secure from all such balls as did not come in a straight line. He witnessed the earlier part of the battle from places yet more remote, particularly from an observatory which had been placed there by the King of the Netherlands, some weeks before, for the purpose of surveying the country. It is not meant to infer from these particulars that Napoleon showed, on that memorable occasion, the least deficiency in personal courage ; on the con
he evinced the greatest composure and presence of mind during the whole action. But it is no less true that report has erred in ascribing to him any desperate efforts of valor for recovery of the battle ; and it is remarkable, that during the whole carnage, none of his suite were either killed or wounded, whereas scarcely one of the Duke of Wellington's personal attendants escaped unhurt.
NOTE E. England shall tell the fight 1-P. 505. In riding up to a regiment which was hard pressed, the Duke called to the men, “Soldiers, we must never be beat,-what will they say in England ?" It is needless to say how this appeal was answered.
NOTE F. As plies the smith his clanging trade.-P. 506. A private soldier of the 95th regiment compared the sound which took place immediately upon the British cavalry mingling with those of the enemy, to "a thousand tinkers at work mending pots and kettles."
NOTE G. The British shock of levell'd steel.-P. 506. No persuasion or authority could prevail upon the French troops to stand the shock of the bayonet. The Imperial Guards, in particular, hardly stood till the British were within thirty yards of them, although the French author, already quoted, has put into their mouths the magnanimous sentiment, “ The Guards never yield—they die." The same author has covered the plateau, or eminence, of St. Jean, which formed the British position, with redoubts and retrenchments which never had an existence. As the narrative, which is in many respects curious, was written by an eye-witness, he was probably deceived by the appearance of a road and ditch which run along part of the hill. It may be also mentioned, in criticising this work, that the writer mentions the Chateau of Hougomont to have been carried by the French, although it was resolutely and successfully defended during the whole action. The enemy, indeed, possessed themselves of the wood by which it is surrounded, and at length set fire to the house itself; but the British (a detachment of the Guards, under the command of Colonel Macdonnell, and afterwards of Colonel Home) made good the garden, and thus preserved, by their desperate resistance, the post which covered the return of the Duke of Wellington's right flank.
1 The mistakes concerning this observatory have been mutual. The English supposed it was erected for the use of Bonaparte : and a French writer affirms it was constructed by the Duke of Wellington.
NOTE D. The fate their leader shunn'd to share.-P. 505. It has been reported that Bonaparte charged at the head of his guards, at the last period of this dreadful conflict. This, however, is not accurate. He came down indeed to a hollow part of the high road, leading to Charleroi, within less than a quarter of a mile of the farm of La Haye Sainte, one of the points most fiercely disputed. Here he barangued the guards, and informed them that his preceding operations had destroyed the British infantry and cavalry, and that they had only to support the fire of the artillery, which they were to attack with the bayonet. This exhortation was received with shouts of Vive l'Empereur, which were heard over all our line, and
Harold the Dauntless:
A POEM' IN SIX CANTOS.
· Upon another occasion," says Sir Walter, “ I sent up another of these trifles, which, like schoolboys' kites, served to show how the wind of popular taste was setting. The manner was supposed to be that of a rude minstrel, or Scald, in opposition to 'The Bridal of Triermain,' which was designed to belong rather to the Italian school. This new fugitive piece was called . Harold the Dauntless ;' and I am still astonished at my having committed the gross error of selecting the very name which Lord Byron had made so famous. It encountered rather an odd fate. My ingenious friend, Mr. James Hogg, had published, about the same time, a work called the ' Poetic Mirror,' containing imitations of the principal living poets. There was in it a very good imitation of my own style, which bore such a resemblance to 'Harold the Dauntless,' that there was no discovering the original from the imitation; and I believe that many who took the trouble of thinking upon the subject, were rather of opinion that my ingenious friend was the true, and not the fictitious Simon Pure.”—INTRODUCTION TO THE LORD OF THE ISLES. 1830.
Harold the Dauntless.
The jolly sportsman knows such drearihood,
Of such, in summer's drought, the anglers plain,
Who hope the soft mild southern shower in vain; THERE is a mood of mind, we all have known But, more than all, the discontented fair, On drowsy eve, or dark and low'ring day, Whom father stern, and sterner aunt, restrain When the tired spirits lose their sprightly tone, From county-ball, or race occurring rare, And naught can chase the lingering hours away. While all her friends around their vestments gay Dull on our soul falls Fancy's dazzling ray,
prepare. And wisdom holds his steadier torch in vain, Obscured the painting seems, mistuned the lay, Ennui !-or, as our mothers call’d thee, Spleen!
Nor dare we of our listless load complain, To thee we owe full many a rare device ;For who for sympathy may seek that cannot tell Thine is the sheaf of painted cards, I ween, of pain ?
The rolling billiard-ball, the rattling dice,
1 Published by Constable and Co., January, 1817, in 12mo. siderable success.' It has never, however, been placed on a 7s. 60.
level with 'Triermain ; and, though it contains many vigorous 2“ Within less than a month, the Black Dwarf and Old pictures, and splendid verses, and here and there some happy Mortality were followed by . Harold the Dauntless, by the au- humor, the confusion and harsh transitions of the fable, and thor of the Bridal of Triermain.' This poem had been, it ap- the dim rudeness of character and manners, seem sufficient to pears, begun several years back; nay, part of it had been ac- account for this inferiority in public favor. It is not surprising tually printed before the appearance of Childe Harold, though that the author should have redoubled his aversion to the notion that circumstance had escaped the author's remembrance when of any more serious performances in verse. He had seized on he penned, in 1830, his Introduction to the Lord of the Isles ; an instrument of wider compass, and which, handled with for he there says, “I am still astonished at my having commit- whatever rapidity, seemed to reveal at every touch treasures ted the gross error of selecting the very name which Lord By- that had hitherto slept unconsciously within him. He had ron had made so famous.' The volume was published by thrown off his fetters, and might well go forth rejoicing in the Messrs. Constable, and had, in those booksellers' phrase, "con- native elasticity of his strength."--Life of Scott, vol. v. p. 181. 1 The dry humor, and sort of half Spenserian cast of these, as well as all the other introductory stanzas in the poem, we think excellent, and scarcely outdone by any thing of the kind we know of; and there are few parts, taken separately, that
The turning-lathe for framing gimcrack nice;
Harold the Dauntless.
List to the valorous deeds that were done
By Harold the Dauntless, Count Witikind's son! Then of the books, to catch thy drowsy glance Compiled, what bard the catalogue may quote! | Count Witikind came of a regal strain, [main. Plays, poems, novels, never read but once ;- And roved with his Norsemen the land and the But not of such the tale fair Edgeworth wrote, Woe to the realms which he coasted ! for there That bears thy name, and is thine antidote; Was shedding of blood, and rending of hair, And not of such the strain my Thomson sung, Rape of maiden, and slaughter of priest, Delicious dreams inspiring by his note,
Gathering of ravens and wolves to the feast : What time to Indolence his harp he strung ;- When he hoisted his standard black, 01 might my lay be rank'd that happier list Before him was battle, behind him wrack, among !
And he burn'd the churches, that heathen Dane,
To light his band to their barks again.
On Erin's shores was his outrage known, Displaying on the couch each listless limb, The winds of France had his banners blown; Till on the drowsy page the lights grow dim, Little was there to plunder, yet still And doubtful slumber half supplies the His pirates had foray'd on Scottish hill: theme;
But upon merry England's coast While antique shapes of knight and giant grim, More frequent he sail'd, for he won the most.
Damsel and dwarf, in long procession gleam, So wide and so far his ravage they knew, And the Romancer's tale becomes the Reader's If a sail but gleam'd white 'gainst the welkin blue, dream.
Trumpet and bugle to arms did call,
Burghers hasten'd to man the wall, 'Tis thus my malady I well may bear,
Peasants fled inland his fury to 'scape, Albeit outstretch'd, like Pope's own Paridel, Beacons were lighted on headland and cape, Upon the rack of a too-easy chair ;
Bells were tolld out, and aye as they rung And find, to cheat the time, a powerful spell Fearful and faintly the gray brothers sung, In old romaunts of errantry that tell,
“Bless us, St. Mary, from flood and from fire, Or later legends of the Fairy-folk,
From famine and pest, and Count Witikind's ire !" Or Oriental tale of Afrite fell, Of Genii, Talisman, and broad-wing’d Roc,
III. Though taste may blush and frown, and sober rea- He liked the wealth of fair England so well, son mock.
That he sought in her bosom as native to dwell.
He enter'd the Humber in fearful hour,
Weak in battle, in council sage ;
Nor does the volume ask for more renown, Gifts he gave, and quiet he bought; Than Ennui's yawning smile, what time she drops And the Count took upon him the peaceable style it down.
Of a vassal and liegeman of Britain's broad isle.
have not something attractive to the lover of natural poetry ; while any one page will show how extremely like it is to the manner of Scott."- Blackwood's Magazine, 1817.