Зображення сторінки



and died in the woods. In VISIT

some places, also, the bark was eaten from the trees, to the

height of seven or eight feet. FIELD OF BATTLE

On the other side of the forest, about twelve or thirteen

miles from Brussels, is WaterWATERLOO.

loo, in itself an insignificant village, but now destined to

celebrity in the page of hisTo the Editors of the Baptist Magazine. tory. The ground on which SIR,

it stands is flat and low. Ad. Your last number contains vancing a mile and a half on a valuable paper, 'under the the same road, we came to a signature of T. F. On the small place, resembling an EngPrice of a Victory.”— With a lish hamlet, called Mont Saint view to enforce the sentiments Jean; it stands on the northern of that pious and able writer, boundary of the field of battle, I send you a brief account of and, by its name, the late action a visit to the spot where that is designated in all the French awful price was paid.

accounts. Accompanied by an intelli- About two hundred yards gent friend, I reached Brussels from Mont St. Jean, one hunon the 17th of July, and having dred and thirty pieces of the spent the day in surveying some cannon, captured from the of the most remarkable objects French, were placed under a in that dissipated city, we next guard of the British Royal Arinorning proceeded to the field tillery. One of these soldiers of battle. At the distance of was our guide to the different a nile and a half from Brussels parts of the field. From an the road ascends a considera- adjoining eminence, the view ble eminence, which commands resembles that of several large a fine view of the city and sur- English common fields unintounding country. The fields closed, and separated from each

" white unto harvest,” other, only by some stout hedges and exhibited a profusion of that would appear to be boundivine bounty. We soon after daries of the respective parishes. entered an immense' beech-fo- The produce was, or rather had rest, called Le Forêt de Soigne. been, chiefly, rye and barley. The road through it is a dreary From east to west the eye vista, of more than seven miles ranges through a distance of in length, very roughly paved, twelve or fourteen miles, and and barely wide enough for two five or six from north to south, carriages to pass with safety. It was easy for any person We soon became sensible of a who had carefully read the very unpleasant' effluvia, pro- Duke of Wellington's dispatch, ceeding from the carcases of to'sée, at once, the positions horses, which, being wounded which had been occupied by in the battle, had taken shelter the contending armies.. That



of the British consists of a Sainte, from which the" light Tange of rising grounds, rather battalion of the legion,” he says, than hills, while that of the

were forced by the enemy, army opposed to them is con- because they had expended all siderably more elevated. The their ammunition.” The Hawhole exhibited a scene of aw- noverians, posted here, appear ful devastation, at the view of to have paid some attention to which, feelings of humanity, pa-" man's great concern;" for, in triotism, and, I hope, of piety, the garden, and all around it, were too powerful for restraint, I perceived great numbers of and compelled me, more than small books of devotion, in the once, to turn away from my German language; while along companions.

the French line, little, I am inWe first visited that part of formed, was to be seen, but the field which is designated by scattered packs of cards. I Lord Wellington, the position confeșs, I felt more pleasure in of his “ left centre.” On the gathering up scraps of these ground which the British forces devotional books, than in any here occupied, the graves, or other circumstance I met with rather the tumuli, which ill on the field. La Haye Sainte conceal the bodies of our slaugh- exhibits a melancholy picture tered countrymen, are very nu- of devastation---its walls, per

Those employed in forated in every direction with the work of burial have ill exe- balls--and its deep well choked cuted the task; having merely up with the bodies of the dead. dug around the bodies as they From the position of the left lay, and lightly thrown the earth centre, we passed over a very over them. Part of the corpses, extensive field, on which I could or of their garments, was, in not see ten ears of corn, in any many instances, visible. one place, that were not trodderi · On the descent of the hill down, and, in most instances, opposite to the left centre, is a trampled into the ground with strong hedge, at which the blood. Passing along the front French appear to have made of the British line, we apconsiderable resistance to the proached the farm, called by final charge of the British in the British Commander Houfantry. Proofs of the carnage goumont.

It is situate in which here took place, are front of the position occupied distressing beyond description. by the British right centre, and The earth appears imbued to a near the road leading to Nigreat depth with human gore; relles.". It appears, even to an while numberless caps, jackets, untaught eye, to have been a boxes, &c. &c. A post of the utmost importance boxes, &c. &c. strewed the to the contending armies. In widely-extended field. : About position, and in strength, it is three furlongs in advance, on almost a fortress. The garden the right of the Charleroi road, is enclosed by a very strong is the farm-house, called by brick wall; the preinises are Lord

Wellington, La Haye covered on one side by a grove

[ocr errors]

of beech, and guarded on the it was necessary, for I already other, by a pond, serving as a felt. considerable nausea from moat; and in the centre of the having incautiously approached farm-yard is a large Roman Ca- a great pit, but slightly covered, tholic chapel. The whole is which contains the sad remains so situate, that the enemy's can- of multitudes who fell on this non could be brought to bear memorable spot. only on the upper part of the From the farm of Hougouwalls and buildings; and it re-mont, it is, I apprehend, about ceived its greatest damage from a mile and a half to Bonatheir shells. This farm, and parte's Observatory, from which its vicinage, presents the most he directed the battle. This melancholy scene in the whole temporary erection, formed of field. “Here the French rough beech, recently cut from troops," says Lord Wellington, the grove in which it stands, “ began the contest by a most resembles a square scaffolding furious attack; and here, against of three stories, narrowing as large bodies of the enemy, our they rise, with a circular seat brave Guards maintained their near the summit. It cannot be post through the whole of the less than seventy feet in height, day." The trees at the en- Its position is on the highest trance, (of what kind it was im-ground of the French left, nearpossible to say, but as large as ly opposite to that occupied by our fine elms), stand with their the British commander. If arms scattered in every direc- this should prove to be the spot tion, and their trunks burnt to (I said, as I approached it) on charcoal. The chapel unroof which the hand of Heaven has ed, and the whole of the walls employed British skill and vas black with fire. Beautiful fruit- lour to arrest the progress of trees, with their burnt branches the most inordinately and sucand scorched fruits pendant on cessfully ambitious commander the ruins, while a lower bough of modern times, I shall not re, or two retain the still ripening gret that I have taken some fruit, to shew, what, in the pains to visit it. I would here morning of the day, the rest learn afresh the great lesson, had been, and a long garden- that “ Jehovah reigneth;” that wall, perforated by our men to he“ maketh the wrath of man admit the fire of the musketry, to prạise him, and the remain, directed against the enemy, der of it he will restrain." I The grove of beech shews, was greatly unwilling to leave probably, two thousand trees, this place. The progress of every one of them in a wound- Bonaparte, for the past twenty ed, mangled state; struck with years, I had watched with an atshot of all sizes. We counted | tentive eye, and an anxious from forty to one hundred and heart; and I now thanked God thirty wounds in a single tree. afresh, that an admiration of I entered the archard, unob- his talents had never, for one served by our guide, but he soon moment, seduced me to frame, hastened to recall my steps; and or listen to, an apology for big

[ocr errors]

crimes. Divine wisdom may tion of such a scene. Norshall and will cause much good to my heart be steeled to the re arise out of the evil which he flection, that the great mass of bas committed: for this, my the French soldiery entered the praise is due to God, but none awful contest in a state border: is due to the mad ambition of ing on intoxication; while our this relentless man.

own countrymen were marched On our return, we passed the at dead of night, from scenes position of Lord Wellington and (there is too much reason to his Staff, and then crossed the believe) of riot and debauchery, field to La Belle Alliance, a and fell by crowds the moment public house, where many relics they entered the hostile field. of the battle are shewn to travellers. Every step of the path

Thus frensy dares eternal fate." which reconducted us to Mont An estimate of the woes Saint Jean, as well as the which this awful contest has ipneighbouring buildings and Alicted, may, perhaps, be best fields, wear dreadful marks of formed by a reference to that destructive ravage.

of individuals. I gathered up Casting a last glance over the some French letters. In one of ensanguined field, I said, How them I read: “Our dear son, widely different is the view, to you are marching to the field those which have so often met of battle ; your departure has my enraptured eye, on the banks plunged both your parents in of the Isis, the Avon, and the deep distress. Your leader is, Ouse. Traversing the pro- at least, brave; and you must vinces of my native country, in fight his battles. May God almost every direction, a scene, preserve you, for the sake of in any degree resembling that your aged father and mothers of Waterloo, I have not once so we anxiously pray.” beheld. And why is a lot as

In another, I read, “ You, signed me in that Heaven-pro- and you only, can enable me to tected land!

support my earthly existence

While you are absent, my only Blest Isle, confess thy Crod.resource is tears.” Almost But, if a recollection of Bri- every letter contained a long list tish fields, contrasted with those The fate of each individual that

of inquiring, anxious friends, of Waterloo, excite my grati- fell, must have spread misery tude, the reverse of the coñtrast must excite commisera through a large circle. How tion. The armies of the foe,

great must be the scene!

Are not these fond relatives Aying, had disclos'a

at this moment reflecting, thap The ghastly plaiu : ! took a nearer view, Unseemly to the sight, nor to the smell the corpse of a son, a brother,

ateful. What loads of mangid Hesh and limbs or a husband, lies half covered (A dismal carnage) hath'd in reeking gore, Lay welt'ring on the ground!”

with earth, while a hand or a

foot, projecting from the hillock, Our Redeemer bitterly wept, invites à vulture or a dog to even in the distant contempla- prey on the putrid body. Is

[ocr errors]


compassion prohibited from en-may, by this day's dreadful victering a field of battle? And tory, be secured to the dominion may she not veuture to look into of a Protestant sovereign, whose immortality too! One of my great care it shall be, to diffuse companions found a Bible on ainong them the invaluable blesthe field. I said, “ the pro- sings of that knowledge which mises of eternal life which it leadeth to eternal salvation. contains, were, I hope, written With what vast events, in the on the owner's heart.” Hard


and in future ages, may by, a letter from a pastor of a the decision of one awful day be Baptist church in England, to connected ? How altered from a pious soldier belonging to his that evening is the face of Eucongregation, was gathered up: rope! I follow with prayers the Its proprietor, it appears, had ambitious, the daring, the guilty cherished its consolations in leader of the Gallic bands.death. O, that all our brave May God give him repentance defenders had died thus happy, as he did to one who made the thus prepared for eternity! streets of Jerusalem to flow with * Bravely such meet the deadly sliot,

blood! Liberty, to vex the earth Secure of life above the skies."

with more calamities, may he Amid the awful tumult of never more obtain ! roaring cannon, the sigh was Whatever be my share of wafted with acceptance to hea- those privations, or those exerven- -Lord Jesus, receive my tions, that are necessary to sus: spirit.”

tain the safety and prosperity of How forcibly does such a my native country, I feel more scene call on us to act for God! than ever ready to bear, not only Of how much worth is religion without murmuring, but with to a soldier; and how greatly gratitude to Him, who has thus desirable is it, that we should, far guided Britain through the by aiding the Naval and Mili- storm, and who has still, I trust, tary Bible Society, and other mercy in store for this highly similar institutions, become the favoured land. means of increasing the number In a future number, I may, of “ devout soldiers.” How perhaps, indulge myself in some can we better alleviate the woes reflections on the state of Soof man, or serve our country's ciety in the Netherlands, which, cause ?

as I passed through Ostend, As I retired, I determined to Bruges, Ghent, and the neighsubscribe cheerfully to the wi- bouring towns, appeared to be dows and orphans of the Wa- such as must excite, in every beterloo sufferers, and more dili- nevolent and well - informed gently than ever to promote the mind, the most compassionate circulation of Bibles.

wishes on their behalf. Again, I said, “ By terrible things in righteousness,” God

Sir, may have answered our mis

Your's, &c. sionary prayers. These fine provinces of the Netherlands

Oxford, Aug. 9, 1815.

[ocr errors]

I am,

J. H.

« НазадПродовжити »