Imágenes de página
[blocks in formation]

From the Gentleman's Magazine.

Waterloo. tensive and magnificent Forest of Soigny, TE travelled from Halle, the last which extends over an immense tract of

to Brussels, thro' an enchanting country, North to South (the direction in which where Nature and Art conspire to fill it is traversed by the road from Brussels) the mind with delightful emotions. Ou it extends to a distance of six or seven our arrival at Brussels, we drove to a miles. The whole scene was solemn spacious and elegant hotel called the and grand—it was, to borrow the words Duke of Wellington, which stands in of one of our Poets, “ Pan's own umthat delicious spot called the Park, the brage dark and deep ;" and well calcuvaried beauties of which surpass the de- lated to inspire the mind with mingled scriptive powers of my pen. In a for. emotions of admiration and awe. The mer Tour I communicated a variety of road is very wide, perhaps not less than particulars concerning Brussels, for between 40 and 50 feet, with a paved which I refer your readers to the pages chaussée in the middle, along which our of your Magazine in the months of Oc- carriage rolled. I could not help contober and November 1804. I made trasting the stilness of our journey, intersome additional observations during my rupted only by the chirping of birds and last visit, which must be postponed until the sound of the woodman's axe, with the Reader has been conducted over the the scenes of noise, coofusion, and horplains of Waterloo.-We proceeded ror, which were exhibited on this very thither the day after our arrival at Brus- road for some days before and after the sels in a carriage which we hired for the battle. Soon after emerging from the day, and wbich commodiously held the gloom of the Forest, the village of Waparty—with whom I had travelled from terloo opened to the view; a straggling Lille ; and from whose society and con- hamlet, with a neat church, in the centre. verse I had derived so much rational On entering the church an interesting gratification, as made me deeply regret sight presented itself--namely, monuthat the hour of bidding, perhaps, a final ments consecrated to the memory of seve adieu, was so near at hand. We set eral British Officers who had gloriously out at an early hour in the morning, with fallen in the cause of their Country, on the view of breakfasting at Waterloo, the 18th of June 1815; which will be and dedicating the rest of the day to a hailed as a proud day for England, as minute survey of the field of battle. That long as feelings of patriotism and indecelebrated spot is situated near 10 miles pendence remaio warm in the hearts of to the South of Brussels. Soon after Britons. On one of the monuments apleaving the suburbs, we entered the ex- peared the following inscription : "Dul 31 Eug. Mag. Vol. I

ce et decorum est pro patriâ mori !"

853) Monuments erected in the Parish Church of Waterloo [854 Nature, with what exquisite chords dost may apply to itself the prophetic strain thou bind our hearts, making them thrill of Ovid, in regard to his own immortal with ineffable emotions of sympathy and work: grief, tenderness and love ! Why was “Nomenque erit indelebile nostrum. my heart full on this occasion ? and why Ore legar populi, perque omnia sæcula fama did I give vent to my feelings in sighs

-Viran," and tears? I reclined against the monu. I stood on tiptoe when I recollected ment-I looked at the inscription--and that I was now upon the spot which thought of Britain. Every association formed the head-quarters of the British of ideas, public and private, connected army on the eve of the battle, and where with that word, rushed upon my mind; the arrangements for that eventful duy and after a pause of some moments, I were planned in the sagacious and conturned round to a lady of our party, who prehensive mind of Wellington. On stood before the monument dissolved in returning to the Ion, my feelings were tears, and repeated the following lines excited in a manner which I cannot easily from Dr. Young :

describe, on being shewn the room “ Britain! that word pronounc'd is an alarm,

where I was told the Hero slept the It warms the blood, tho’ frozen in our veins ; night preceding the battle, and where, Awakes the soul, and sends her to the field

after the close of that scene of carnage, Enamour'd of the glorious face of War.

he penned his interesting and masteriy Britain ! there's noble magic in the soand Pr letter, which, in a style of uorivalled

simplieity and modesty, gives a concise and aceurate account of the most impor

tant transactions of the day. This letter

Waterloo. is a fine model for writing military disMy last Letter left me in the village patches, and fully entitles our great of Waterloo, surveying the Monuments Commander to the praise so justly be erected in the Parish Church to the stowed upon * Julius Cæsar, that he memory of several gallant officers who could handle the pen as well as the had fallen on the glorious 18th of June, sword; and that the Duke of Wellington 1815. The monuments were plain and could so handle his pen at that moment, neat. The inscriptions were brief, stat- shewed a power of self-possession truly ing the names and rank of the deceased, characteristic of a great mind, and which and that the expence had been defrayed doubtless eminently contributed to the by the surviving officers of their respec- success of the day. tive regiments.

In the room where we sat down to The Church of Waterloo is a brick breakfast there was a party of Ladies building, in the form of a Rotunda, with and Gentlemen from Brussels who were a Portico in front, and exhibits a singular going to survey the field of battle; we appearance. The Village consists of soon entered into conversation, and they one long street of mean-looking houses, gave us many lively anecdotes, together irregularly built. While I surveyed the with accounts of various interesting ocstreet from the Church Porch I said to currences which had reference to the myself, Not many weeks ago this paltry English army at Brussels before and village was scarcely known beyond its after the battle. They expressed the own immediate vicinity; and now, by most enthusiastic delight in the triumph giving its name to a battle so glorious in of British valour on that ever memorable its issue, and so important in its conse- day, which, to use the words of one of quences, it resounds throughout Europe their party, decided the fate of Europe. will live for ever in the annals of fame Another said, Your Wellington bas -and be mentioned with rapture by the eclipsed the fame of all the great generals most distant generations of Britons. Waterloo may boast of having crowned vidi, vici”--- to borrow the words of an cuter:

“ Cæsar's celebrated Bulletin-Vesu, Britain with a wreath, before which the taining female Tourist, " was more concise, but Jaurels of Cressy and Agincourt, of not quite so unassuming." See Narrative of a Rainillies and Bleoheim, wither; and glishwoman.

Visit to the Field of Waterloo. By an En

British troops.

Letters from Waterloo,

(856 recorded in English History, not even “not so much from the admiration of excepting the illustrious Marlborough." military valour, which is said to be On which the honest Squire of our party, natural to women, as from that delicate whom I have repeatedly quoted, stood and respectful attention to our sex, which up; waving his hand, exclaiming, forms one of the distinguishing characHuzza! Old England and Wellington teristics of Highland soldiers.” I had for ever!” lo short, the whole party afterwards an opportunity, on my return were full of admiration of our brave to Brussels, ofconversing with this Lady, countrymen, and their great Chief, wbose imagination I found had been They were delighted to think that their warmed in the first instance with admicompatriotes the Belgians had stood firm ration of the Highland character, by to the great and good cause in which the perusing the poems of Ossian, which so Allied Powers had with one accord highly exalt the female sex—which exunited against France, and that their hibit such exquisite sensibility towards soldiers had resisted all the allurements their native charms, and render every which had been held out to them to passion in human nature subservient to join the standard of Buonaparte. I had the fine emotions of virtuous love; and a conversation with a fair lady of their from all I could learn, I believe that party, who was full of life and spirit, and those poems are more generally read and who happened to be at a village between admired on theContinentthan in England, Brussels and Waterloo for some days

Just as we had finished breakfast, a before the battle. She gave a very barouche drove to the Ino, containing animated description of the march of the an English party bound for the field of

“ Never," said she, battle; and most agreeably surprised “did my eyes hehold such men; but was I by the sight of two old friends in above all

, I admired the appearance of this party, to whom I could truly apply the Highlanders, dressed like our Belgic the words of Horace on meeting his ancestors in the days of Julius Cæsar;" friends Virgil, Plotius, and Varius, at and then she shewed me a copy of a Sinuessa, in his Journey from Rome to martial song (for she understood English Brundusium. well) which had been presented to her “Animæ quales neque candidiores by a Highland officer, Brave Ecossois Terra tulit, neque queis me sit decinctior alter, des Montagnes, as she styled him, and o! qui complexus, et gaudia quanta fuerunt!" wbich he told her was often sung in the Highlands at convivial meetings. I land ?"

“And how long since you left Eng.

“ What news from home?" requested leave to transcribe the song, “Quo modo valet carissima Conjux, which displayed a fine glow of patriotic carissimi liberi, fratres et sorores?" fervour, and which, when sung in full “ And who would bave thought of our chorus in the mess-room of a Highland meeting here?" with many such like regiment, must have produced a strong questions all in a breath. My spirits effect, especially in a foreign land. The were refreshed and elevated by this unfirst stanza was as follows,

expected and delightful interviow, which “ In the garb of old Gaul, and the fire of old reminded me of the reflexion suggested

From the heath-cover'd mountains of Scotia

to Horace by the above-mentioned we come,

occurrence, a reflection to which I subWhere the Romans endeavour'd our country scribe with heart and band :

to gain, But our Ancestors fought, and they fought Dot

“Nil ego contulerim jucundo sanus amico." in vain."...

But how rare is the blessing, and how After transcribing the Song, I read few are the exceptions to the Poet's it aloud, and when I had done, the fair pathetic complaint, Belgian exclaimed, with marks of ardent feeling, “O, Sir, I believe the And what is friendship but a name,

A charm that lulls to sleep, ladies of Brussels would have followed

A shade that follows wealth or fame, the Highland Corps, more especially that

And leaves the wretch to weep! fioe regiment called the 42d, to the end of the world, and that," added she, With this. English reinforcement to

[ocr errors]

Original Letters from Waterloo.

[858 our party, we paid another visit to the who had no other concern in the battle Church, and from thence we repaired to than as spectators, to make choice of the a Cottage close to it, to which the gallant top of this steeple, as their point of obMarquis of Anglesea (then Earl of servation. Or advancing from Mont Uxbridge) was conveyed upon receiving St. Jean", 've scene of action, my his wound, and where his leg was attention was soon arrested by an affectamputated. We were shewn the Boot ing sight, namely, the numerous graves which he wore on that leg when woun- that appeared in every direction. I ded. In a small flower-garden close to withdrew from every one of the party to the cottage, we were shewn the spot indulge my solitary meditations, on this where the limb was buried, and which melancholy scene. "What a sad spechas since, I doubt not, been visited by tacle,” said I to myself, " is here !" as more Pilgrims than the shrines of all the I stood upon an eminence commanding Popish relics throughout Belgium. They a view of an immense number of freshtalked, when I visited the spot; of made graves. “ Oh what a bitter replanting a tree over the grave, which I newal of grief and sorrow would the understand has since been done, namely, sight of these tombs occasion to thousa willow, besides a monument, with a ands of mourning widows, mothers, suitable inscription.

sisters, and forlorn maidens in England ! I proceeded with some of our party Come then, let me sympathize with you, from Waterloo to the field of battle on ye afflicted daughters of Britain, and let foot.

In walking through that long me bedew with my tears the graves of straggling village, I conversed, more of those whom ye loved. His saltem less, with almost every person I met, on accumolem donis, et fungar inani the subject of the battle, and my curi- munere !' Now," said I to mysell

, “I osity was often highly gratified. We am in the house of mourning, and is it not were surrounded in every part of our better to be in this house than in the progress by men, women, and children, house of feasting? Yes, verily, for I find, offering for sale a great variety of relics. sa I bave often experienced, that thereby I surveyed with much interest every the heart is made better. Come then, object and scene between Waterloo and let me meditate over the tombs that conMont St. Jean, that was connected with tain the remains of my gallant countrythe operations of the British Army. After men. Ab! how many kind and tender leaving the former village, the ground husbands, dutiful sons, and faithful becomes elevated, and the Forest of lovers, who not many weeks ago were Soigny, which had kept retiring from alive, healthy, and gay, are now sleeping the view at Waterloo, now began to in these graves ; how many endearing surround us once more on the left to ties of love and friendship were dissolved Joly Bois, and thence to the spot called by the hand of Death in this field, in the Les Vieux Amis, where it receded course of one day! Rest in peace, ye again; and on our approach to Mont brave defenders of your Country's cause. St. Jean, which seemed to be more than May the Father of mercies, and the a mile beyond Waterloo, the field of God of all consolation, grant to your battle appeared in full view. It was surviving friends and relatives those conupon this little village that the rear of the solations under their sad bereavement, left wing of the British Army rested which He alone can bestow! and when during the whole day; and from thence the last trumpet shall sound, and the appears, considerably to the right, the dead shall be raised to life, Othat ye Church of Brainè Leude, which was might all rise, through the merits of Him in the rear of the extremity of the right who died for our sios, to the life immorwing of our Army. The fair writer tal !” After spending nearly an hour in of a visit to the Field of Waterloo justly sarveying the repositories of the dead, ! observes, that from the top of the steeple began to survey the positions of the British of this Church, the battle might have and French Armies; but the description been seen more distinctly than from any of them, as well as of the most interesting other place. I apprehend few people scenes of the battle, must form the subject would have been found bardy enough, of my next Letter-Gen. M. June 1817.

859) Letter from Rome, describing the present Mode of taking the Veil. [860


[ocr errors]

Brom the Geatlemaa's Magazine.
Rome, Dec. 31, 1816. the conclusion of it they again knelt; and
N the morning of Sunday, the 24th a short service was chaunted by the

of March, two young women took priests and the choir, in wbich they the Veil at the Church belonging to the themselves joined. While still on their Convent of the Dominicans.

knees, the bishop demanded their names, We felt much interest in the cere- to which they answered in a tone rather mony, and arrived at an early hour loud, sharp, and artificial, “ Maria pipe o'clock. Great crowds were assem. Augustina, and Maria Veronica." bled about the entrance, and the church They were sisters. And now it was itself was nearly full. The street imme- that they renounced for ever the mandiately before the doors was strewed ners and costume of this world. A garwith evergreen plants, and guards were land of sweet-smelling flowers was offered on duty, bearing the same shrub in their to the elder sister, who instantly, and caps. We, as English, were allowed to with much indignation, real or affected, proceed through the body of the Church, cast the blooming chaplet behind her. and had places assigned to us close to the A second and similar crown was held altar. Here we waited a considerable out to the younger votary, who put it time, when Mass was celebrated at the from her, indeed, but without violence. lower end of the church twice ; a trifling It fell silently at her knees. The feathinterval only between the ceremonies. ers and diamonds now made way for Soon after this the organ commenced, crown of thorns, placed on the head by and was continued at intervals. the priests, assisted by the lady patroness.

Precisely at eleven the signal was The downy plume, the diamonds' glare, given for the approach of the two victims. and the crown of thorns, formed a singular They were preceded by priests, and assemblage. Thus accoutered, did not conducted by their father. Their ap- these females now look like victims of pearance, perhaps, excited less interest wbat we the enlightened call dark ages? than we had anticipated. They were A crucifix was presented to them, which Deither very young, nor very pretty; they clasped with fervour to the breast. while at the same time their dress, though Lastly, each one was armed with a taper, affectedly gay, was very far from becom- lighted, to betoken vigilance. The ing, habited as they were, much after Robes of the Order were now brought the fashion of tragedy queens, or of forwards. With these they retired berevellers at the carnival. Feathers hind the grating, at the back of the altar, waved over their heads, silver and other where they were to be apparelled, and ornaments glittered in their hair, and shorn of their hair by two of the old immense bouquets adorned their bosoms; Religious. This invasion of the scissors but dinginess threw a veil over the was, perhaps, the most affecting part of whole; and the Isabella Brown certainly the ceremony, but they bore it smiling, predominated over the virgin white. and with much fortitude. The music

I was close to them when they knelt at this time was very fine. The old before the altar. They afterwards took women were extremely adroit. All the seats opposite to us, when a priest com- pomp of dress speedily vanished, and menced an harangue, sufficiently com- was spurned at, as the flowers had been mon-place, and, as it might be supposed, before. The Black Robes and White in praise of monastic institutions, and of Veils of the Order were speedily adjustseclusion from the world. During the ed; and certainly the ladies lost nothing recital these two young persons evidently of their beauty by this change of costume. suffered much agitation, but which they A glittering crown was placed on the endeavoured to hide in smiles. Such a head. They were saluted by each one smile had much of melancholy in it. of the Religious, beginning with the

The discourse was rather long. At superior; and thus ended the ceremony.

« AnteriorContinuar »