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the 18th; and early next morning, moved on to Bayas, in the hope of forcing that pass, and cutting off the armies of the south, and centre. But Reille had taken a strong position, with the army of Portugal, to cover their passage through the defile of La Puebla. We were directed to attack in front, while the light division turned their position. A brief affair ensued, during which the armies of the south and centre threaded the defile, and came into line behind the Zadora. That object gained, Reille fell back, and crossed the river, and we bivouacked for that night upon the Bayas.

It was apparent to all that a great and decisive battle was at hand ; King Joseph, with his immense parcs and ambulances, was still in front of Vittoria ; and although two huge convoys were ready for France, and one had been already despatched, still the quantity of baggage that remained was enormous, and the number of carriages almost incredible. The whole of his miserable Court had followed the steps of the royal fugitive. Traitors to their country, they had no mercy to expect; and in flight alone, was safety. The immense quantity of military stores—the accumulated mass of private plunder, collected for years before, and now heaped together in the confusion of a hurried retreat the encumbrance of a numerous body of nobles and civilians, -all these tended to render Joseph's position the more embarrasssing. If he retreated without a battle, all must be lost He vacillated valuable time slipped away—and at last he determined to “stand the hazard of the die ;” and accordingly, took a position in front of Vittoria.

On the evening of the 20th, we received intelligence that the French were resolved to accept battle the next day ; and it was ascertained that they were busily engaged in fortifying the ground that Marshal Jourdan had selected. I was now on the eve of my first field ; and a feeling of anxiety and restlessness kept me waking, while two or three veterans, who were huddled into the same tent, slept so soundly that I envied them. At day-break the camp was in a bustle. The third, fourth, seventh, and light divisions, which formed the infantry of the centre, got speedily under arms ; and, accompanied by a powerful artillery, and the whole of the heavy cavalry, we crossed the ridges behind which we had pitched our tents, and over a rugged and difficult surface, moved stoutly and steadily towards the points marked for our separate attacks. We took a position in front of the bridge of Nanclares, covered from the enemy's fire by broken ground and underwood, and there awaited the movements of the third and seventh divisions, whom rougher ground and a greater distance had hitherto prevented from getting up.

About ten o'clock the action began, by General Hill seizing the village of Puebla, and Morillo attacking the heights that domineered it. A doubtful and protracted struggle

for the possession of the latter ensued. The French supported Maranzin, who held it; and Sir Rowland detached Colonel Cadogan, with two battalions, to sustain the Spaniards. Fresh troops, from time to time, came into action. Villatte's division were drawn from the centre, to maintain the heights. Hill reinforced the assailants ; the contest still was doubtful;

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but Sir Rowland ended it by crossing the Zadora, pushing through the defile of Puebla, and carrying the village of Subijana de Alava.

Three hours had passed; and amid the intervals of the fire at Subijana, a distant cannonade was faintly heard upon our left, and indicated that Graham was up, and coming into action. The light division had already crossed the bridge of Tres Puentes; one brigade of the third had forced that of Mendoza, and another, with the seventh division, forded the river, and attacked the French right, in front of Margarita. We were desired now to advance ; and, passing the bridge of Nanclares, were followed by the heavy cavalry, who, forming on our right in squadrons, connected us with Sir Rowland's left.

Already, fearing that he should be turned on both flanks, Joseph had issued orders to retreat ; and, covered by a cloud of skirmishers, and under a tremendous fire of fifty pieces of artillery, he retired his columns on Gomecha, where his reserve was posted. Now the battle was at his height; the third division carried the village of Arinez, the 52d stormed Margarita ; and the 87th seized Hermandad. But the last struggle was yet to come.

Reille still maintained himself on the Upper Zadora, and, with eighty pieces of artillery in full and rapid play, the wreck of the armies of the south and centre were enabled to fall back, and make their last stand, between the villages of Ali and Armantia.

For a moment the storm of artillery arrested the onward progress of the allies. The battle raged furiously; but the struggle was fated to be short. Cole ordered the fourth division to advance. On rushed its noble battalions, untamed by a terrible cannonade and a heavy and well-supported musketry. The heights on the left of those occupied by the French were carried, and the doubtful conflict ended in a total route.

Throughout the day I had been busily employed. I occasionally carried orders ; and the steadiness with which my noble horse faced fire, attested the value of the Empecinado's present. I had procured at Frenada a very respectable animal, on which to mount Mark Antony; and, to do him justice, the fosterer seemed to follow like a shadow where I went. Just as we crowned the height, General R who was leading the column, beckoned to me, and I was directly at his side.

“ Gallop back. Tell to launch the cavalry boldly—see !the French infantry are mobbed, and running!”

I had half wheeled round to convey the order, when, suddenly, my gallant charger gave a convulsive shudder, and sank under me. I sprang from the saddle before he had time to roll over, and called on the fosterer to dismount-made one step to take his horse, and execute the order, when a sharp stroke smote me on the head. All around became confused-memory fled—and for a time I recollected nothing but indistinctly.

When I did recover, I found myself under a small knoll, which sheltered us from ranging shots: the fosterer on one side, a twentieth grenadier on the other; and my excellent and valued friend Peter Crotty, seated on a dead horse, vis-à-vis, and giving orders for my resuscitation.


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“ But, hark! that heavy sound breaks in once more,

As if the clouds its echo would repeat ;
And nearer, clearer, deadlier than before!
Arml arm ! it is—it is—the cannon's opening roar!”


To the buzz of voices round me I had been fully conscious for the last five minutes; but the first words I understood distinctly, was an earnest inquiry, on the part of Lieutenant Crotty, regarding the safety of what he termed “the stolen horse;" and great was his sorrow on learning that the charger was defunct.

“Blessed Bridget!” he exclaimed ; “what a pity! Worth two hundred, if he was worth a taaster.* Well-it only shows that old sayin's true-What comes over the old lad's back, whisks away under his belly. But I would like to know what the divil killed the rider ? I've groped him all over, and sorra scratch I can find upon him but this clip upon the head, and many a worse I've got often at a hurling match. As he's dead, however

“I am not dead, Peter !" I muttered.

“ Then, upon my sowl I'm glad to hear it from such good authority!” returned Mr. Crotty. “Give him another taste out of the canteen! If there's life in a man, brandy's the thing to find it out. Here we are safe and comfortable against every thing but shells ;-I thought I heard the whiz of one of them a while ago—may the curse o' God light upon

their inventor! You must know I have a mortal dread of them --and I'll tell ye why. The day before Salamanca, when Marmont and my Lord were watching each other like two pickpockets, the column halted, to let the men cook dinner, if they had any to cook. Well

-so I set out on the ramble, to see if luck would stand my friend—and who should I find behind a big rock, and eating cold pork, but Pat Dogherty and Charley Blake, of the ould “rough and readies,"—the 13th. Peter!" says Charley, “ did ye get ye'r dinner ,

” yet?” “Divil a pick!” says I; "and, what's more, I wish somebody would tell me where it's to come from?“ Draw a chair," says he, jokin', "and take share of the pork.” “Arrah, niver say it again,”

So down I pops upon the grass, and, feaks, made a beautiful dinner of it. Well-out came the canteens, in coorse ; and we begins drinkin'when bang goes two or three guns from the hill opposite us, on which the French were marchin'. “ What's that?"

* Anglice,—Tester, a sixpence.

I had none,

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says I.


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