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shipmen kept firing at the top, and he supplied them with cartridges. One of the Frenchmen, attempting to make his escape down the rigging, was shot by Mr. Pollard, and fell on the poop. But the old quartermaster, as he cried out, “That's he-that's he,” and pointed at the other, who was coming forward to fire again, received a shot in his mouth, and fell dead. Both the midshipmen then fired at the same time, and the fellow dropped in
When they took possession of the prize, they went into the mizzen-top and found him dead, with one ball through his head and another through his breast.
The total British loss in the battle of Trafalgar amounted to one thousand five hundred and eighty-seven. Twenty of the enemy struck, but it was not possible to anchor the fleet, as Nelson had enjoined. A gale came on from the south-west: some of the prizes went down, sone went on shore; one effected its escape into Cadiz, others were destroyed; four only were saved, and those by the greatest exertions.
The death of Nelson was felt in England as something more than a public calamity: men started at the intelligence, and turned pale, as if they had heard of the loss of a dear friend. An object of our admiration and affection, of our pride and of our hopes, was suddenly taken from us; and it seemed as if we had never till then known how deeply we loved and reverenced him. What the country had lost in its great naval hero—the greatest of our own and of all former times—was scarcely taken into the account of grief. So perfectly, indeed, had he performed his part, that the maritime war, after the battle of Trafalgar, was considered at an end. The fleets of the enemy were not merely defeated—they were destroyed : new navies must be built, and a new race of seamen reared for them, before the possibility of their invading our shores could again be contemplated. It was not, therefore, from any selfish reflection upon the magnitude of our loss that we mourned for him; the general sorrow was of a higher character. The people of England grieved that funeral ceremonies, and public monuments, and posthumous rewards, were all which they could now bestow upon him whom the King, the Legislature, and the Nation would have alike delighted to honour; whom every tongue would have blessed-whose presence in every village through which he might have passed would have wakened the church-bells, have given schoolboys a holiday, have drawn children from their sports to gaze upon him, and “old men from the chimney corner” to look upon Nelson ere they died. The victory of Trafalgar was celebrated, indeed, with the usual forms of rejoicing, but they were without joy; for such already was the glory of the British navy, through Nelson's surpassing genius, that it scarcely seemed to receive any addition from the most signal victory that ever was achieved upon the seas : and the destruction of this mighty fleet, by which all the maritime schemes of France were totally frustrated, hardly appeared to add to our security or strength; for while Nelson was living to watch the combined squadrons of the enemy, we felt ourselves as secure as now when they were no longer in existence.
The most triumphant death is that of the martyr; the most awful, that of the martyred patriot; the most splendid, that of the hero in the hour of victory; and if the chariot and the horses of fire had been vouchsafed for Nelson's translation, he could scarcely have departed in a brighter blaze of glory. He has left us, not, indeed, his mantle of inspiration, but a name and an example which are at this hour inspiring thousands of the youth of England-a nanie which is our pride, and an example which will continue to be our shield and our strength. Thus it is that the spirits of the great and the wise continue to live and to act after them.
It is an
NAPOLEON understood his business. Here was a man who in each moment and emergency knew what to do next. immense comfort and refreshment to the spirits, not only of kings, but of citizens. Few men have any next; they live from hand to mouth, without plan, and are ever at the end of their line, and, after each action, wait for an impulse from abroad. Napoleon had been the first man of the world, if his ends had been purely public. As he is, he inspires confidence and vigour by the extraordinary unity of his action.
He is firm, sure, self-denying, self-postponing, sacrificing everything to his aim-money, troops, generals, and his own safety also ; not misled, like common adventurers, by the splendour of his own means. “Incidents ought not to govern policy,” he said, “but policy incidents.” “To be hurried away by every event, is to have no political system at all.” His victories were only so many doors, and he never for a moment lost sight of his way onward in the dazzle and uproar of the present circumstances. He knew what to do, and he flew to his mark.
He would shorten a straight line to come at his object. Horrible anecdotes may, no doubt, be collected from his history, of the price at which he bought his successes ; but he must not, therefore, be set down as cruel, but only as one who knew no impediment to his will : not blood-thirsty, not cruel ; but woe to what thing or person stood in his way! “Sire, General Clarke cannot combine with General Junot, for the dreadful fire of the Austrian battery.” “Let him carry the battery.” “Sire, every
” regiment that approaches the heavy artillery is sacrificed. · Sire, wbat orders ? " " Forward ! forward !”
) In the plenitude of his resources every obstacle seemed to vanish. “ There shall be no Alps,” he said ; and he built his perfect roads, climbing by graded galleries their steepest precipices, until Italy was as open to Paris as any town in France. Having
decided what was to be done, he did that with might and main. He put out all his strength. He risked everything, and spared nothing-neither ammunition, nor money, nor troops, nor generals, nor himself. If fighting be the best mode of adjusting national differences (as large majorities of men seem to agree) certainly Bonaparte was right in making it thorough.
“The grand principle of war," he said, “ was, that an army ought always to be ready, by day and by night, and at all hours, to make all the resistance it is capable of making.” He never economized his ammunition, but on a hostile position rained a torrent of iron-shells, balls, grape-shot-to annihilate all defence. He went to the edge of his possibility, so heartily was he bent on his object. It is plain that in Italy he did what he could, and all that he could; he came several times within an inch of ruin, and his own person was all but lost. He was flung into the marsh at Arcola. The Austrians were between him and his troops in the confusion of the struggle, and he was brought off with desperate efforts. At Lonato,* and at other places, he was on the point of being taken prisoner.
He fought sixty battles. He had never enough. Each victory was a new weapon. “My power would fall, were I not to support it by new achievements. Conquest has made me what I am, and conquest must maintain me.” He felt, with
that as much life is needed for conservation as for creation. We are always in peril, always in a bad plight, just on the edge of destruction, and only to be saved by invention and courage. This vigour was guarded and tempered by the coldest prudence and punctuality. A thunderbolt in the attack, he was found invulnerable in his intrenchments. His
very attack was never the inspiration of courage, but the result of calculation. His idea of the best defence consisted in being always the attacking party. “My ambition,” he says,
was great, but was of a cold nature.” Everything depended on the vicety of his combinations : the stars were not more punctual than his arithmetic. His personal attention descended to the smallest particulars. “ At Montebello
A small town near Lake Garda in Italy.
I ordered Kellermann to attack with eight hundred horse; and with these he separated the six thousand Hungarian grenadiers before the very eyes of the Austrian cavalry. This cavalry was half a league off, and required a quarter of an hour to arrive on the field of action; and I have observed it is always those quarters of an hour that decide the fate of a battle.”
Before he fought a battle, Bonaparte thought little about what he should do in case of success, but a great deal about what he should do in case of a reverse of fortune. The same prudence and good sense marked all his behaviour. His instructions to his secretary at the palace are worth remembering S“ During the night, enter my chamber as seldom as possible. Do not awake me when you have any good news to communicate; with that there is no hurry: but when you bring bad news, rouse me instantly, for then there is not a moment to be lost.” His achievement of business was immense, and enlarges the known powers of man.
There have been many working kings, from Ulysses to William of Orange, but none who accomplished a tithe of this man's performance.
To these gifts of nature Napoleon added the advantage of having been born to a private and humble fortune. In his later days he had the weakness of wishing to add to his crowns and badges the prescription of aristocracy; but he knew his debt to his austere education, and made no secret of his contempt for the born kings, and for “the hereditary donkeys," as he coarsely styled the Bourbons. He said that, in their exile, “they had learned nothing, and forgot nothing." Bonaparte had passed through all the degrees of military service; but, also, was citizen before he was emperor, and so had the key to citizenship. His remarks and estimates discovered the information and justness of the measurement of the middle class.
Those who had to deal with him found that he was not to be imposed upon, but could cipher as well as another man. When the expenses of the empress, of his household, of his palaces, had accumulated great debts, Napoleon examined the bills of the creditors himself, detected overcharges, errors, and reduced the claims