« AnteriorContinuar »
Ms wise unto salvation? or, the same religion being taught in both, does (he Bishop upon the whole prefer the human standard?
Bishop Howley, we are given to understand, is a prelate of amiable manners and of active philanthropy, honourably conscientious in all the duties of his station. His private exhortations are, we are well informed, of a very different character from his published Charges: they partake of a semi-evangelical spirit, and are given in the tone of kindness. How can we account for such a production proceeding from so estimable a man? Very different anticipations were entertained on his succeeding to the mitre which had been so recently worn by the lamented Porteus.
The Lord Treasurer Burl igh, in writing to Archbishop Whitgift, relative to the translation of the Bishop of Rochester to Chichester, and to other ecclesiastical matters, expresses his wish, ' that the Church may take (hat guod thereby, that it hath 1 need of, for surely (he adds) your Grace must pardon me, I rather « \\ i -h it, Imii look or must hope for it. 1 see such \vorldlimss in
I many that were otherwise affected before they came lo cathe'dral churches, that I fear the places alter the men; but herein 'I condemn not all: but few there be that do better, being 'bishops, than being preachers, they did. I am bold thus to 'utter my mind of Bishops to an Archbishop, but I clear myself. 'I mean nothing in any conceit to your Grace, for though of late 'I have varied in my poor opinion, in that by your order, poor 'simple men have rather been sought for by inquisition, to be ( found offenders, lira i upon their facts condemned, yet surely
I1 do not for all this differ from your Grace in amity and love, 'but I do reverence your learning and integrity, and wish that 1 the spirit of gentleness may win, rather than severity.'
From the Court at Gotland's, Sept. 17,1584.
Art. VII. Narrative of the Expedition which sailed from England in J817, to join the South American Patriots; comprising every'Particular connected with its Formation, History, and Fate; with Observations and authentic Information elucidating the Real Character of the Contest, Mode of Warfare, State of the Armies, &c. By James Hackett, First Lieutenant of the late Venezuela Artillery Brigade. 8vo. pp. 144. Price 5s. 6d. 1818.
r§'llU mind can form to itself the idea of no spectacle more sublime, no attitude of human society more captivating and heroical, than that which IMilton, in a burst of eloquence, calls up to the imagination of his readers, in his speech for the liberty of unlicensed printing: ' A noble and puissant oa ion 'rousing herselt like a strong man after sleep, and shaking her 'invincible locks, as an eagle muing her mighty youth, and 'kindling her undazzled eyes at the full mid-day beam ; purging 'and unsealing her long abused sight at the fountain itself of 'heavenly radiance, while the whole noise of timorous Ie 'flocking birds, with those also that love the twilight, floft 'about, amazed at what she means.'
The hope, however, of realizing, on the grand scale of a ■ tional revolution, achievements answering, in an adequate itgnee, to the poetic conception, can hardly have survived, in u> sober mind, the fatal result of the recent experiments upon h■man nature. History, indeed, does tell us of some gloru revolutions; but too often the character of the contest has bee that of evil conflicting with evil; and the struggle has b** blindly persisted in, till the very elements of the commoui have exhausted themselves, and sunk into a ghastly calm. TV immediate issue of the French Revolution was a dreadful disappointment of those romantic hopes which every man of generous feelings could not but indulge; although eventually, perhaps, it will prove to have been worth twenty years of era* and blood, in order to form a soil in which freedom and religis may germinate. The result of the late burst of patriotism b Spain, is still more dishearteuing, as it seems to exhibit a faui moral incapacity in that enslaved and suffering nation, for un better fate. In South America, we have been led to flatter ourselves, that events of a happier, character were being achieved b< the transatlantic subjects of the imbecile Ferdinand. In thcu cause, every one deserving of the name of Briton must feel the liveliest interest; no one can dispute ' its abstract justice,' nor if there much more room to doubt its eventual success. Be when we come to inspect more narrowly the features of lb* contest, the imagination finds little indeed of a nature adapted t» sustain the feeling of exultation, or even of complacency. Without laying too much stress on the information or opinions of uV unfortunate hero of this disastrous narrative, we believe this there is no room to doubt that it is one in which it would be sen to impossible for the subjects of a civilized country to take pari population formerly distributed into tyrants and slaves, nc« amalgamated into one moving horde of undisciplined warrior*. the hitherto indelible distinctions of white and black complex** being almost superseded, together with the customs and ncn' restraints of civilized life,—such a population, especially whet we consider that the basis of its character is, at best, notour better than the Indian or the South American Spaniard, mat well be conceived to present no great attractions to an Eurupea*. how fond soever he might be of armies and campaigns. Bu when to complete the picture it is added, that the principle «< which the warfare is carried on, is that of the roost un»pariaf and ferocious extermination, 'each side being so infuriate 'against the other by a long train of barbarities asd cold-Uoodoi 'slaughter as to reader it almost necessary for those who ac
te "Utally engage in the struggle to divest their minds of every * feeling of humanity, and prepare themselves to be not only 'witnesses of, but participators in, .acts of the most revolting anil 'indiscriminate brutality,' the mind sickens with dismay at the hopeless prospect for the interests of humanity, /which seems to await alike the success or the failure of the enterprise. A dreadful retributive dispensation seems to be now carrying on by the mutual agency of the hostile parties; and our Author throws out the idea of a catastrophe still more fntal to the usurpers of the new world, as the possible result of the termination of the present contest. A common feeling of hostility against the common enemy, has suspended the sentiments of jealous enmity with which hitherto the Indian and the Spanish natives liave regarded each other; hut should their combined strength prove victorious, the contest, it is feared, might immediately assume another character; the freed slaves will have acquired the strength and the confidence of Independence, and witli the example of St. Domingo before them, may aspire to there-, assertion of their ancient rights as the original lords of the soil. ( South America may thus become the seat of hostility between 'its white and black population.'
The following is the picture which Mr. Hackett draws, of the state of the Independent armies, on the authority of several oflicers who had just escaped from the Patriot service, and who arrived at St. Bartholomew's, while he was still on board the Britannia.
'The Independent armies march in hordes, without order or dis* cipline; their baggage consisting of little more than the scanty covering on their backs. They are totally destitute of tents, and in their encampments observe neither regularity nor system. The commanding officers are generally mounted, and likewise such of the others as are able to provide themselves with horses or mules, the latter of which are in great plenty. The exterminating principle upon which the war is carried on between the contending parties, render their campaigns bloody and destructive; desolation marks the progress of those hostile bands, to whose inveterate enmities the innocent and unoffending inhabitants are equally the victims, with those actually opposed to them in military strife. In action the Independents display much bravery and determination, and frequently prove successful, notwithstanding their want of discipline, deficiency of arms, and disorderly manner of attack and defence. Unhappily the work of death terminates not with the battle, for on whatsoever side victory rests, the events which immediately succeed those sanguinary struggles are such as must cast an indelible stain upon the Spanish American Revolution.
'The engagement is scarcely ended, when an indiscriminate massacre of tli>. prisoners takes place; nor k the slaughter only coiifined to the captives, the field also undergoes an inspection, when the helpless wounded are in like manner put to the sword.
'The following instance of vindictive cruelty on the royalist side, was related to me by an officer who was present in the engagement in which the transaction originated. Jn this action, a young French officer, in the service of the Independents, had his arm severed from his shoulder by a sabre cut, and being unable to sustain himself from loss of blood, he sunk to the ground. His distinguished bravery had however previously been observed by his companions, who succeeded in bearing him off the field, from whence they conveyed him into the woods, and sheltered him in a negro hut; where laving applied such balsams as could be procured they departed. The armies retired to other parts of the country,and the officer was fast recovering from the effects of his wound, when General Morillo, advancing upon the same route, discovered his retreat, and had him instantly put to death.
'Such was the barbarous system pursued by the belligerent parties; although I must in justice observe, that I have always understood the exercise of these cruelties originated with the Royalists, and were subsequently resorted to by the Independents on principles of retaliation. Hence the system became reciprocal, passed into a general law, and has now, it is to be feared, become unalterable.
'The sufferings which the Independents undergo during their campaigns, from the difficulty of procuring food, are most severe; mule's flesh, wild fruits, and some dried corn, which they carry loose in their pockets, frequently constituting the whole of their subsistence: and we were confidently assured, that the army under General Bolivar has even often been for days together dependent for support, solely upon the latter description of provisions and water. Pay was now totally unknown to them, in consequence of the utter exhaustion of their resources; and, however successful they might eventually be, there existed no probability whatever, that they would even then possess the means of affording pecuniary compensation to those who may have participated in the struggle*.' pp. 5+—58.
* • The sanguinary and ferocious character of the warfare,' says our Author, in a subsequent paragraph, * which has reflected lasting disgrace on the contending parties on the Continent of South America, also governs the proceedings of the hostile navies; the indiscriminate destruction of prisoners, is most generally accomplished by compelling the ill-fated captives, to pass through the ceremony which is technically called Walking the Plank. For this purpose, a plank is made fast on the gang-way of the.ship, with one end projecting some feet beyond the side; the wretched victims are then forced, in succession, to proceed along the fatal board, and precipitate themselves from its extremity into the ocean; whilst those who instinctively clinging to life hesitate prompt obedience to the biutal niandite. are soon compelled at the point of a spear to resign themselves to a watery grave, to avoid the aggravated cruelties of their inliuiunn conquerors.
'The Independents, who (as has been before observed) impute
Their clothing of course corresponds to their fare, consisting, v c are told, in most instances, of ' fragments of coarse cloth, 'wrapped round their bodies,' while pieces of the r.iw buffalo hide laced over their feet, form a substitute for shoes: these,
* when hardened by the sun's heat, they again render pliant by
* immersion in the first stream at which they chan-e to arrive.'
* A blanket, with a hole cut in the middle, let over the head, and tightened round the body by a buffalo thong, has been frequently the dress of the officers; and one of them who witnessed the fact, assured
me, that such was actually the uniform of a British colonel ( R )
who was at that time in the Independent service. Whilst these gentlemen thus described the patriot habiliments, they commented in the strongest language on the impolicy and imprudence of proceeding to serve in conjunction with an aimy barefooted and in rags, provided with such splendid uniforms as we had been obliged to procure; and ridiculed the strange contrast which our dresses and those of the Patriots would exhibit in the field; observing, that such clothes would be alone sufficient to excite the jealousy of the natives, to whose eagerness for their possession, we should almost inevitably become a sacrifice.' pp. 53—54>.
The Patriots, it is stated on apparently good authority, are decidedly averse to foreign assistance. Arms and ammunition are all that they are desirous of obtaining from us. The introduction of British officers, particul irly, it is added, 'had already excited greater jealousy and dissension among the native troops, than their most zealous exertions could possibly make amends for, and to so violent a pitch had their jealous feelings carried them, as to subject foreigners, attached to the patriot service, to perpetual hazard of assassination.'
'Their obstinate hostility to the admission of foreign aid, can in a great measure be accounted for, from a confidence in their own numerical strength, and the obvious weakness of the mother country. They encourage a probably well-grounded conviction, that, however the contest may be protracted, success must ultimately attach itself to their party; and an anxiety to enjoy the entire fruits of their triumph, has created this aversion to the admission of foreigners, whose services, they cannot but know, are proffered rather from motives of personal aggrandizement, than any particular solicitude for the emancipation of South America.' pp 64—65.
Such were the views which determined our Author to relinquish the project in which he bad been, by the 'most infamous deception, seduced to engage, as 'First Lieutenant of the late 'Venezuela Artillery Brigade,' which brigade was disbanded by the Colonel, off Grenada, before it had reached the Spanish
the origin of this barbarous mode of warfare to the Royalists, r<sort for their justification in adopting a similar course of proceeding, to the necessity of retaliation.' pp. 120—121.