90后青年作家范墩子短篇小说集《虎面》出版

Before pursuing the immediate story of Buonaparte and his pursuers from the North, we will narrate the progress of Lord Wellington during this year. It was a favourable circumstance for him that, although he continued to receive no little trouble, impediment, and discouragement from the proud and thankless Spaniards, the turn of affairs in the North compelled Napoleon to withdraw some of his best troops and his best general from that country to aid him in his new campaign against Russia, Sweden, and Germany. He had altogether two hundred and seventy thousand men in Spain, in one quarter or other, to oppose the small Anglo-Spanish army in the south, and the miscellaneous army under Lord Wellington, amounting only to about seventy thousand men. He therefore withdrew one hundred and fifty skeletons of battalions from Spainamounting, nevertheless, to only about twenty thousand menas a means of disciplining his young conscripts. What was of far more consequence, he withdrew Soult, the only general that occasioned Wellington much trouble. The nominal Commander-in-Chief of the French armies in Spain was King Joseph, but the real commanders were Marshal Jourdan and Generals Clausel and Foy in the north, General Reille at Valladolid, Drouet at Madrid, and Suchet at Toledo.

On the 18th of October the Americans crossed the frontier opposite to the village of Queenstown with three thousand men, and found only three hundred British to oppose them. But Brock was with them, and cheered them so gallantly that they made a desperate resistance. Unfortunately, Brock was killed, and then the brave three hundred retreated, and the American general, Wadsworth, posted himself, with one thousand six hundred men, on the heights behind Queenstown. But the same afternoon he was attacked by a fresh body of about one thousand British and Canadians, and had nearly his whole force killed or taken prisoners. Himself and nine hundred of his men were captured, and four hundred remained on the field slain or severely wounded. The rest, a mere remnant, escaped into the woods, or were drowned in endeavouring to swim back to their own shore. Thus ended Madison's first attempt to conquer Canada.

About the same time Sir James Yeo, who had dared to attack the superior squadron of Commodore Chauncey on Lake Ontario, and took two of his schooners, now prevailed on the spiritless Sir George Prevost to join him in an attack on Sacketts Harbour. Here the Americans had a dockyard, where they built vessels for the lake fleet, and had now a frigate nearly ready for launching. Sir George consented, but, on reconnoitring the place, his heart failed him, and he returned across the water towards Kingston. Sir James was highly chagrined, but prevailed on this faint-hearted governor to make the attempt. Seven hundred and fifty men were landed, who drove the Americans at the point of the bayonet from the harbour, and set fire to the new frigate, to a gun-brig, and to the naval barracks and arsenal abounding with stores. Some of the Americans were in full flight into the woods, and others shut themselves up in log barracks, whence they could soon have been burnt out. In the midst of this success the miserable Sir George Prevost commanded a retreat. Men and officers, astonished at the order, and highly indignant at serving under so dastardly a commander, were, however, obliged to draw off. The Americans, equally amazed, turned back to endeavour to extinguish the flames. The arsenal, the brig, and the stores were too far gone; but the new frigate, being built of green wood, had refused to burn, and they recovered it but little injured. Thus, however, was lost the chance of crushing the American superiority on the lake, which must have been the case had Sacketts Harbour been completely destroyed. Lord Oxford's case was brought at length to a termination also in his favour. His friends having complained of the hardship of keeping him without a hearing for nearly two years, the 24th of June was appointed for the trial to take place in Westminster Hall. The Commons again met in committee to complete the evidence against him; but it was now found that Walpole, who was the chairman, and who had formerly pursued the inquiry with all eagerness, had suddenly cooled, and seldom came near the Committee; and they therefore appointed a new one. In fact, he and Townshend, out of opposition, were doing that secretly which they could not do openly without loss of characterthey were exerting themselves in favour of their old antagonist, and they soon hit on a scheme for bringing him off without any trial at all. The Lords were persuaded to listen to any evidence in support of the charge of[39] misdemeanour before they heard that on the grave charge of treason, and the result foreseen by the Opposition took place when the resolution was reported to the Commons. They immediately determined that it was an infringement of their privileges, and declined compliance with it. This was what Walpole and the then partisans, secret or open, of Lord Oxford, had foreseen. The Commons refusing to attend in Westminster Hall on the day fixed, the Lords returned to their own House, and passed a resolution declaring the Earl of Oxford acquitted, an announcement received by the people with acclamation. The Commons then demanded that Oxford should be excepted from the Act of Grace; but, notwithstanding, he was released from the Tower, and the Commons never renewed the impeachment.

George II. was born in 1683, and was, consequently, in his forty-fourth year when he ascended the throne. In 1705 he married the Princess Caroline Wilhelmina of Anspach, who was born in the year before himself, by whom he had now four childrenFrederick Prince of Wales, born in 1707, William Duke of Cumberland, born in 1721, and two daughters. The Cabinet, by a very considerable majority, declined giving its assent to the proposals which the Minister thus made to them. They were supported by only three members of the Cabinetthe Earl of Aberdeen, Sir James Graham, and Mr. Sidney Herbert. The other members of the Cabinet, some on the ground of objection to the principle of the measures recommended, others upon the ground that there was not yet sufficient evidence of the necessity for them, withheld their sanction. ON BOARD AN EMIGRANT SHIP AT THE TIME OF THE IRISH FAMINE. (See p. 542.)