Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB

a Highlander came up, and struck him on the arm with a sharp scythe fastened to a pole. The blow caused the sword to fall from the hand of the brave Colonel ; and another Highlander coming up at the moment, gave him a second wound on the head,—the fatal wound of which he died. He fell; but in the midst of his own sufferings be still thought of others, and he made signs to a faithful servant who was near, not to remain with him, but to endeavour to save himself. So the servant escaped, and his master was left wounded and bleeding upon the field. As Colonel Gardiner lay there dying, but still sensible of what was passing around him, his eye glanced upon one of the enemy's party, a rebel chief who was fighting near him. Gardiner was heard to say, “ You are fighting for an earthly crown: I am going to receive a heavenly one."

When the battle was nearly over, Gardiner's servant returned ; and found his master breathing, though unable to speak. He took him up, and carried him to the house of a minister who lived near, and laid him on a bed ; and there, in a few hours after, he died. Such was the end of a man who, as I said before, may well be called a Christian soldier. He had fought under a nobler banner, and for a greater sovereign than England's; and now he was gone to receive far higher honours than any

a

a

which his country had to bestow, from the King of kings, who has promised to those who are “ faithful unto death” in His service, no less a prize than “ the crown of life.”

“ Servant of God, well done;

Rest from thy lov'd employ;
The battle fought, the vict'ry won,

Enter thy Master's joy.
The call at midnight came,

He started up to hear ;
A mortal arrow pierc'd his frame,

He fell, but felt no fear.
Tranquil amidst alarms,

It found him in the field,
A veteran slumbering in his arms,

Beneath his red-cross shield.
His sword was in his hand,

Still warm with recent fight,
Ready, that moment, at command,

Through rock and steel to strike.
At midnight came the cry,

“ To meet thy God, prepare ;
He woke, and caught his Captain's eye ;

Then strong in faith and prayer,
His spirit, with a bound,

Left the encumbering clay;
His tent at sun-rise on the ground

A blacken'd ruin lay.

The pains of death are past;

Troubles and sorrows cease;
And life's long warfare done at last,

He enters into peace.
Soldier of Christ, well done;

Praise be thy new employ,
And while eternal ages run,

Rest in thy Master's joy.-MONTGOMERY.

XXXVII. TIMES OF WAR.

A.D. 1746–1815.

O place me in some Heaven-protected isle,
Where peace, and equity, and freedom smile;
Where no volcano pours his fiery flood,
No crested warrior dips his plume in blood :
Where power secures what industry has won ;
Where to succeed is not to be undone;
A land that distant tyrants hate in vain,-
In Britain's isle, beneath a George's reign.

COWPER.

I TOLD you

there were other events to engage our attention in different parts of the world, during the reign of George II. Nearly all the remainder of that reign, war was carried on against the French, not only in Europe, but in Asia and America also ; for they had attacked our settlements in those distant quarters of the globe, and the English government found it necessary to afford protection to our colonists. This period of hostilities is called the Seven Years' War.

In the East Indies, one of the native princes had attacked the English, and taken possession

of Calcutta. A hundred and forty-six of our country-men were seized by the cruel conqueror, and confined in a dreadful prison, called the Black Hole, where, in the course of a few hours, nearly all of them died of suffocation from want of air. The English however soon retook Calcutta, conquered the native prince, and seized another town on the river Ganges. Under the command of Lord Clive, they then fought against the French colonists in India, and dispossessed them of almost the whole of their settlements in that part of the world. Our struggles in Europe, however, were not equally successful. The island of Minorca was lost; a fleet sent out, under the command of Admiral Byng, to relieve the place, was unable to be of any use; and the French vessels were suffered to escape. In consequence of this unhappy affair, Admiral Byng was, on his return, brought before a court martial, and harshly sentenced to be shot, for not having done, as was supposed, all that he might have done for the defeat and destruction of the enemy.

But the foreign expedition which will, perhaps, interest you most, was that in North America, because with it is associated the name of a great man still remembered and honoured in England.

The French had, some years before, colonised Canada, and made settlements there ; but the English were in possession of the United States, and continual disputes occurred between the two rival nations whose territories were so near together. These disputes frequently led to open hostilities; and, at last, in the year 1759, the city of Quebec was taken by this country ; and the French colony was soon afterwards conquered, and annexed to the British possessions. But this was not effected without much loss of life; and one valuable man who fell in the contest was the lamented General Wolfe, to whom I just now alluded. The enterprize

I in which he was engaged in taking Quebec, was difficult and dangerous, but he contrived his plans with so much skill, and carried them out so bravely, as to secure success and victory. But just at the very moment when success and victory were before him, Wolfe fell. He first received a wound in the wrist; this, however, notwithstanding the pain it occasioned, he heeded not, but hastily binding it up, he continued fighting with the same ardour as before. In a few minutes after, another ball inflicted a wound of a more serious kind, and Wolfe, no longer able to maintain his post, was carried away from the immediate scene of action. He fainted from loss of blood ; but was presently aroused by the cry of “ They run, they run!” “ Who run”? enquired the dying commander, summoning all his energies at the sound,

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »