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mother who is disappointed in the nature of her child, and who yet knows her powerlessness to alter that nature.
She remembered that she had told him once it was not given to him to read her thoughts, and that he had only replied “I wonder !’and, aware of the quickness of his perception, she steadied herself to assume the impenetrably sensible tones that disconcert sentiment.
'If I came-it would be for Thekla’s sake. The thought of her loneliness often oppresses me.'
Michael hesitated for a moment; then he said, without moving the cigarette from his lips :
'I should like to see the little sister.'
TO A GRAVEN IMAGE.
Thou that on me and all thou canst espy
I know the cause : I know thou wouldst prefer
Relax thy look of concentrated gloom !
Nay, hear the truth: the facts I will declare :
Change then thy spells : or thou shalt straightway go
A. D: GODLEY. VITTORIA AND ITS HISTORIC FIELD.
BY COLONEL E. MACARTNEY FILGATE.
* As long as men talk of God they will talk of me,' Napoleon is reported to have remarked to one of his staff on board the Undaunted, on his voyage to Elba in May 1814.
Within the bare limits of a century many men, and many nations, have referred to the Almighty and to the Emperor in the same sentence, but they have only done so in order to emphasise their gratitude to the Merciful Omnipotent, in that He delivered them from the thraldom of the merciless Corsican. Last year, Russia, with much pomp and ceremony, celebrated the centenary of that destruction of Moscow, from whose ashes-phænix-like—her people rose to a more vigorous appreciation of their undoubted destiny ; this year, round the massive and stately memorial raised, at Leipzig, to commemorate Napoleon's defeat in the Battle of the Nations, Germany will mark her sense of that far-reaching event in her history, and of the place which it fills in the story of the War of Liberation' as the children of the Fatherland term it; while in Spain for some years past the Spaniards have lost no opportunity of reverencing the memories of that Peninsular struggle which they term 'The War of Independence.' And what of ourselves ?
We who, as a people, poured out the best of our blood in Southern Europe in support of the War of Independence, and lavished subsidies on the armies of Northern Europe in the War of Liberation, straining our resources to the very uttermost, and giving to history the immortal story of the Peninsular War, we, who of all others need to remember the eternal lessons of those days, allow them to pass us by almost unheeded and unmentioned. In fact beyond a possible barrack square ceremonial, or a laurel-decked colour here and there, no sign is visible of the gratitude we ought to show for the immeasurable mercies of those war-strained years. The contrast came home to me with an acute sense of disappointment, and almost of pain, as I sat in the quiet of a beautiful evening on Englishman's Hill, the high ridge which crosses the field of Vittoria from North to South and lies athwart the Royal Road leading from
Madrid over the Pyrenees into France. Summoning the voice of history, and setting the current of imagination in motion, I crossed the Zadorra at Nanclares, and, passing between the Sierras of Tuyo and Badaya, reached a spot near Subijana whence I could view the line of the little river, the Bayas, along whose banks the AngloAllied army lay encamped on the afternoon of June 20, 1813.
It was evening, and just such an hour as that on which the victorious legions came pouring in on that summer day which preceded the downfall of the French arms in Spain. The tramp of the British soldiers' tread seemed to echo round me as, in imagination, I could see column after column streaming through the tall crops, broad bands of scarlet standing out in bold relief against the gold of the ripening corn, thousands of bayonets catching the reddening glint of the setting sun. The air was redolent of that wild lavender with which the district abounds, reminding one of Simmons the Rifleman and his fondness for the scented bivouac it afforded.
The veil of the past seemed lifted ; on all sides were lessons bewildering in their magnitude and import, and yet as simple as they were grand. For just one hundred years ago, on June 21, Wellington, by his crushing victory in this valley, taught us all that difficulties are the best encouragement, reverses the true means of education, and temporary failures the source whence men must derive the secret of permanent success.
Four years back, on his second landing in Portugal, he had taken over the grave responsibility of carrying into effect the declared policy of the British Government, as laid down in the despatch of October 1808 to Sir John Moore ' to expel the French from the Kingdom of Spain.' Time and again he had seemed nigh to achievement of that purpose, only to find himself outnumbered and forced to retrace his steps.
In 1809 the passage of the Douro and the victory of Talavera seemed to place the cup of realisation within his grasp, the loss of the frontier fortresses in 1810 removed it out of his reach. Massena's retreat from before the lines of Torres Vedras in 1811 revived the possibility of once again seizing it; the capture of Ciudad Rodrigo and Badajos in 1812, the crushing victory of Salamanca which followed, and the subsequent entry into Madrid brought Wellington nearer than ever to raising it to his lips, but the autumn assault on Burgos with its failure and subsequent terrible retreat once again shattered his prospects.