« НазадПродовжити »
duced to the last extremity—the breach is already made—the conquerors are pouring in over the body of the commander, Rovani, when the hermit breaks forth, slays Tortona, and is himself mortally wounded. He dies at the feet of his wife—Garcio, her husband, her deliverer.
We have dwelt almost exclusively on these two dramas, considering them as by far the best in the collection. But we are by no means blind to the merit of some of the smaller pieces. Among these, we think that we have been most delighted with • The Phantom,' from which however we must refrain from making any extracts : we would not mar a ghost-story for the world; and this is certainly one of the most striking of ghost-stories, cast with great skill into the form of a short drama. The Provost of Glasgow, however, and his lovely, patient, and gentle daughter, must receive our tribute of admiration. The Phantom might make a very pretty pendant to the graceful little drama on Hope, in the former series. One of the prose plays, "The Homicide,' abounds in stirring incident, and effective situation; it would tell, we should conceive, upon the stage,
Miss Baillie, with singular modesty, intimates that it was her intention not to have published these dramas during her lifetime, but that after her death they should have been offered to some of the smaller theatres of our metropolis, and thereby have a chance, at least, of being produced to the public with the advantages of action and scenic decoration, whichi naturally belong to dramatic representations. Surely Miss Baillie's maid, like Lydia Languish's, must have torn out of a certain good old book rather beyond the chapter upon proper pride. We protest in the strongest terms against this derogation from the dignity of genuine tragedy. We trust that the larger theatres will assert their superior claim, and vindicate themselves from the charge implied in this apparent despondency, this more than becoming humility, of our great dramatic authoress. We will surrender to the MINORS, and they may make much of them, Witchcraft, the Stripling, perhaps the Homicide; but we venture to hope that we are not anticipating the fine taste of Mr. Kemble, in suggesting the part of Henriquez as worthy of his great talents. If so, we wish that the brilliant success, which he must meet with, may only be checked by the no less attractive performance of the Separation at the rival theatre. Miss Baillie may this be triumphantly convinced that admiration of true dramatic talent is not yet extinct in the country, and the evening of her life may thus be adorned by that public homage to ber extraordinary talents, which is the ambition and true reward of a dramatic writer.
Art. IX.-A Twelvemonth's Campaign with Zumalacarregui
during the War in Navarre and the Basque Provinces of
Spain. By C. F. Henningsen. Post 8vo. London. 1836. W HEN Lord Eliot and Colonel Gurwood reached the head
quarters of Zumalacarregui at Aserta on the 24th of April last, they were particularly struck with the conversation of a young countryman of their own who had joined the Carlists as a volunteer about a year before, and having won step after step by the most chivalrous gallantry, was now high in the staff, and decorated with the order of St. Ferdinand, with wbich Don Carlos himself had presented him at the conclusion of a charge which he personally witnessed. Colonel Gurwood describes this gentleman as “a five handsome young Englishman,' accomplished by education, and speaking several languages with perfect ease and correctness, whose picturesque details of his short military experience were exceedingly instructive, and who took the warmest interest in the humane object of the Duke of Wellington's mission. Mr. Henningsen continued to serve with the Carlists until the death of Zumalacarregui, for whom he had conceived that romantic species of attachment which he himself calls the soldier's first love—that love which, once widowed, can never again find a place in the heart.' He then retired, not from any belief that the fall of his chief, however severe a blow, would prove fatally injurious to the cause of the Infant; but, partly at least, from the painful conviction that the warfare, which all Zumalacarregui's endeavours in his latter days had proved unable to humanize, would grow more and more brutal and barbarous under the management of his successors. We are inclined to think that, with this generous motive, there may also have mingled the very rational anticipation that, however the war might terminate, an officer of his own class would at best be turned adrift without ceremony.
Captain Henningsen's narrative, now before us, constitutes the only full and fair account we have yet had of the northern insurrection—its origin, objects, and progress-down to the death of his chief. A more interesting memoir, we do not hesitate to say, we have never read. It is rich in matter deserving the attention of the statesman, and the diplomatist, and above all the military student; but we shall confine ourselves to a very short summary of the views which the author gives us of the personal character and bearing of Zumalacarregui—and some detached anecdotes and descriptions illustrative of the miseries and horrors of the Spanish civil war; a contest carried on in the face of the European civilization of the nineteenth century with all the ferocity, the cruelty, the utterly savage ruthlessness of the wildest barbarians of the darkest ages—and which, for aught we can see, is likely to be so carried on for an indetinite number of years, unless the general humanity of the Christian nations shall combine them in some decided and irresistible interference.
One word only as to parties ranged against each other in Spain. The proceedings by which Ferdinand VII., in the last feebleness of his character and health, changed the order of succession in favour of his infant daughter-must at all events be allowed to have been of most questionable justice, and very uncertain authority. His disinherited brother, however, was considered by every Spaniard as the chief and type of the principles of monarchy and catholicism; his personal qualities of honesty and manly courage-(he had stood firm, when Ferdinand and all the rest of the family yielded to the mingled cajoleries and menaces of Napoleon)—were such as to make him dreaded, in spite of his very slender abilities and acquirements, by the enemies—and adored universally by the adherents—of these great principles. The party thus devoted to him consists of, generally speaking, the rural branch of the Spanish population ;-the priesthood, secular and regular, almost to a man, -the small country gentry, the yeomanry, and the peasantry, are with him; and these constitute, as near as possible, nine-tenths of the whole population. The inhabitants of the great commercial towns have opened their affections, for the most part, to the more liberal principles so much in favour at present elsewhere. The court, in actual possession of the seat of government, and sustained by this more stirring and more compact part of the nation, has commanded, with few exceptions, the adhesion of the grandees and other principal nobles—just as these classes went over, with a few exceptions, to Joseph Buonaparte. The army generally gave its allegiance to the pay-office-(no general officer of high standing, except Santos Ladron and Armencha, has ever appeared on the side of Carlos); the whole matériel.- fortresses and muni. tions of war, were at the service of the Queen. The Carlist spirit showed itself on the death of Ferdinand in local insurrections almost everywhere; but the absence of their prince in Portugal, and the want of any great name around which to rally, rendered these demonstrations ineffectual-except in North Castile—where the Curate Merino has all along maintained himself at the head of a considerable though irregular force,—and in Navarre and Biscay, where the insurrection was uniformly becoming more and more formidable, from the hour when Colonel Thomas Zumalacarregui, of a poor but noble family, with 2001. in his pocket, put himself at the head of its bandit-like germ of scarcely eight hundred men, until, after having successively worn out six hostile armies, actually killed off almost all the veterans in the Spanish service, and de
stroyed stroyed the professional reputation of the Queen's six most celebrated generals, he died in the moment of anticipated triumph over all opposition-bequeathing to the cause of his prince complete command over the resources of Navarre and the Basque provinces, — and a hardy, well-disciplined force, capable of at once keeping the Queen's Urbano garrisons in check, and confronting her remaining regulars, to the extent of 25,000 men, in the field.
We may refer our readers to our recent article on Mr. Boyd's " Recollections of a few Davs spent with the Queen's Army,'* for a brief statement of the career, which our present author has painted in minute detail. The civil and administrative and financial talents of Zumalacarregui must have been of themselves sufficient to constitute that miracle in modern Spain-a great man. He was also an accomplished mathematician, and a master of all the higher technics of his profession. He had not served under Wellington and against the Soults and Massenas in vain ; and during his subsequent garrison life he had been often ridiculed for the indefatigable ardour with which he devoted his days and his nights to the study of the great masters of the art of war. But these endowments and acquirements would have availed little, had he not combined with them that indescribable magic power over the mind and heart of man which is the index of genius—the personal prowess and reckless self-exposure of a Homeric heroand last, not least, such a concentration, perhaps exaggeration, of the peculiar passions, prejudices, virtues, and vices of the national character, as stamped himn out for the intense sympathy of his unsophisticated countrymen,- the living symbol and representative of the stern Gothic chivalry of the glorious middle age of Spain.
All these features are brought out with enthusiastic delight in the heart-stirring narrative before us: we shall extract a few passages only ;--- if our space permitted, we should have given at least two of Mr. Henningsen's chapters entire :
• Ile was a man in the prime of life, being forty-five years of age, and of middle stature; but, on account of the great width of his shoulders, his bull-neck, and habitual stoop, the effect of which was much increased by the zamarra, or fur jacket, which he always wore, he appeared rather short than otherwise. His profile had something of the antique--the lower part of the face being formed like that of Napoleon, and the whole cast of his features bearing some resemblance to the ancient basso-relievos which are given us as the like. ness of Hannibalt. His hair was dark, without being black ; his moustaches joined his whiskers; and his dark grey eyes, overshadowed by strong eyebrows, had a singular rapidity and intensity in their gaze-generally they had a stern and thoughtful expression; but when he looked about him, his glance seemed in an instant to travel over the whole line of a battalion, making in that short interval the minutest remarks. He was always abrupt and brief in his conversation, and habitually stern and severe in his manners; but this might have been the effect of the hardships and perils through which he had passed. A civil war, like that which for two years has desolated the north of Spain-sich scenes of strife and massacre-the death of his partisans, and the imperious necessity of reprisals on compatriots, and often on friends, whom the virulence of party opinion armed in mortal contest; exposure to innumerable hardships and privations, the summer's sun, and winter's wind; the sufferings and peril in which his followers were constantly placed, and his awful responsibility, may have been enough to change considerably, even in a brief space of time, Zumalacarregui's nature. It was seldom that he gave way to any thing like mirth; he oftenest indulged in a smile when he led his staff where the shot were falling thick and fast around them, and he fancied he detected in the countenances of some of his followers that they thought the whistling of the bullets an unpleasant tune. To him fear seemed a thing unknown; and although, in the commencement, a bold and daring conduct was necessary to gain the affections and confidence of rude partisans, he outstripped the bounds of prudence, and committed such innumerable acts of rashness, that when he received his mortal wound, every body said it was only by a miracle he had escaped so long. He has been known to charge at the head of a troop of horse, or spurring the white charger which he rode in a sudden burst of passion, to rally himself the skirmishers and lead them forward. His horse had become such a mark for the enemy, that all those of a similar colour, mounted by officers of his staff, were shot in the course of three months, although his own always escaped. It is true, that on several occasions he chose his moment well, and decided more than one victory, and saved his little army in more than one retreat, by what seemed an act of hair-brained bravery.
* Quart. Review, Vol. LIV, p. 186. † The engraved portrait, from a sketch by the author, auswers very strikingly to his description.
• The General's uncommon features, his fur jacket and cap, resembling at a distance a red turban, gave more the idea of an eastern chief than a European general. One might have imagined Scanderbeg at the head of his Albanian army; and certes his semibarbarous followers could have been no wilder in dress and appearance than the Carlists in the early part of the campaign. To me Zumalacarregui, in character and feeling, as well as in costume and manner, seemed always like the hero of a by-gone century. He was of a period remote from our own, when the virtues and vices of society were marked in a stronger mould ;—partaking of all the stern enthusiasm of the middle ages, a something uncommon and energetic in his features seemed to indicate a man formed for great and difficult enterprises. You might have fancied him one of those chiefs who led