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it is said, took some feathers Gheber, fire-worshipper. from her breast for Tahmuras gholes, demons that feed on the (an ancient King of Persia), dead. with which he adorned his ravine, a long deep hollowformed helmet, and transmitted them by a mountain torrent.
afterwards to his descendants. stood on fire, the Ghebers geneKoran, the book written by Ma- rally built their temples over
hommed, as he and his fol- subterranean fires.
lowers assert by inspiration. votaries, those devoted by a vow talisman, charm or spell.
to the service of the temple. pageant, spectacle.
burn on, the Ghebers assert that Al Hassan, the Emir, a title of the sacred fire in the temple at
dignity among the Turks de- Yezd, a city of Persia, has connoting chief or lord.
tinued to burn since the days Harmozia, the present Gomba- of Zoroaster.
roon, a town on the Persian Eblis, Lucifer, Satan. side of the gulf.
vulture, a large rapacious bird Oman, one of the five divisions which feeds on carrion.
of Arabia, on the Persian whetted, sharpened. Gulf.
gloats, gazes with burning pasbeetling, jutting.
sion. Caspian, a large lake on the satrap, a Persian viceroy or north of Persia.
ruler. albatross, the largest known sea- panther, a ferocious animal hav
bird. According to fable it ing a spotted skin, found in sleeps in the air when on the Asia and Africa. wing
falchion, a short crooked sword.
THE BATTLE OF NIEVELLE.
WELLINGTON'S ENTRY INTO FRANCE THROUGH THE PYRENEES.
1. Day broke with great splendour; and as the first ray of light played on the summit of the lofty Pyrenees, the signal guns were fired in rapid succession. Then the British leaped up, and the French, beholding with astonishment their columns rushing forward, ran to their defences with much tumult. They opened a few pieces which were answered from the top of the greater Rhune by the mountain artillery, and at the same moment two companies of the 43rd were detached to cross the marsh, if possible, and keep down the fire from the lower part of the hog's back; the remainder of the regiment, partly in line, partly in column of reserve, advanced against the high rocks.
2. From these crags the French shot fast, but the quick even movement of the British line deceived their aim; and the soldiers running forward very swiftly, though the ground was rough, turned suddenly between the rocks and the marsh, and were immediately joined by the two companies which had passed that obstacle notwithstanding its depth. Then all together jumped into the lower works: but the men exhausted by their exertions, for they had passed over half a mile of very difficult ground with a wonderful speed, remained for a few minutes inactive within half pistol shot of the first stone castle, from whence came a sharp and biting musketry.
3. When they recovered breath they arose, and with a stern shout commenced the assault. The French, as numerous as their assailants, had for six weeks been labouring on their well-contrived castles; but strong and valiant in arms must the soldiers have been who stood in that hour before the veterans of the 43rd. One French grenadier officer only dared to sustain the rush. Standing alone on the high wall of the first castle, and flinging large stones with both his hands, a noble figure, he fought to the last and fell, while his men, shrinking on each side, sought safety among the rocks on his flanks.
4. Close and confused was then the action, man met man at every turn, but with a rattling musketry, sometimes struggling in the intricate narrow paths, sometimes climbing the loose stone walls, the British soldiers won their desperate way, until they had carried the second castle, called by the French the place of arms and the magpie's nest, because of a lofty pillar of rock which rose above it, and on which a few marksmen were perched. From these points the defenders were driven into their last castle, which, being higher and larger than the others, and covered by a natural ditch or cleft in the rocks fifteen feet deep, was called the Donjon.
5. There they made a stand, and the assailants, having advanced so far as to look into the rear of the rampart and star-fort on the table-land below, suspended the vehement throng of their attack for a while; partly to gather head for storming the Donjon, partly to fire on the enemy beneath them who were now warmly engaged with two battalions of Portuguese riflemen. These last were to have followed the 43rd, but seeing how rapidly and surely the latter were carrying the rocks, they had moved at once against the traverse on the other side of the marsh; and very soon the French defending the rampart being thus pressed in front, and warned by the direction of the fire that they were turned on the ridge above, seeing also the 52nd forming the extreme left of the division now emerging from the deep ravine beyond the star-fort on the other flank, abandoned their works. Then the 43rd, gathering a strong head, stormed the Donjon; some leaped with a shout down the deep cleft in the rock, others turned by the narrow paths on each flank, and the enemy abandoned the loose walls at the moment they were being scaled; thus in twenty minutes 800 old soldiers were hustled out of this labyrinth-yet not so easily, but the victors lost 11 officers and 67 men.
6. All the mountain was now cleared of the French, for the riflemen dropped perpendicularly from the greater Rhune
upon the post of crags in the hollow and seized it with small loss; but they were ill-seconded by Giron's Andalusians, and hardly handled by the 34th French
regiment, which obstinately clung to the slope and covered the flight of the confused crowd rushing down the mountain behind them towards the connecting neck of land; at that point also all rallied and seemed inclined to renew the action, yet after some hesitation continued their retreat. This favourable moment for a decisive stroke had been looked for by the commander of the 43rd, but the officer intrusted with the reserve companies of the regiment had thrown them needlessly into the fight, thus rendering it impossible to collect a body strong enough to assail such a heavy mass.
7. The contest at the stone wall and star-fort, shortened by the rapid success on the hog's back, had not been very
Kempt, however, always conspicuous for his valour, was severely wounded; nevertheless he did not quit the field, and soon reformed his brigade on the platform he had thus so gallantly won. The 52nd, having turned the position by the ravine, was now approaching the enemy's line of retreat; but Alten, following his instructions, halted the division partly in the ravine itself to the left of the neck, partly on the table-land.
8. The signal guns from the Atchubia, which sent the light division against the Rhune, had also put the fourth and seventh divisions in movement against the redoubts of San Barbe and Grenada, and eighteen guns were instantly placed in battery against the former. While they poured their stream of shot, the troops advanced with scaling ladders, and the skirmishers of the fourth division soon got into the rear of the work; whereupon the French leaped out and fled, and Ross's battery of horse artillery, galloping to a rising ground in rear of the Grenada Fort, drove them from there also; then the divisions carried the village of Sarre and the position beyond it, and advanced to the attack of Clausel's main position,
9. It was now eight o'clock, and from the smaller Rhune a splendid spectacle of war opened upon the view. On the left the ships of war, slowly sailing to and fro, were exchanging shots with the fort of Socoa; and Hope, menacing all the French lines in the low ground, sent the sound of a hundred pieces of artillery bellowing up the rocks, to be answered by nearly as many from the tops of the mountains. On the right the summit of the great Atchubia was just lighted by the rising sun, and 50,000 men, rushing down its enormous slopes with ringing shouts, seem to chase the receding shadows into the deep valley. The plains of France, so long overlooked from the towering crags of the Pyrenees, were to be the prize of battle, and the half-famished soldiers in their fury broke through the iron barrier erected by Soult as if it were but a screen of reeds.—Sir W. Napier. Nievelle, the name of a small exhausted, tired out.
river to the south of Bayonne, assault, attack. in S.W. corner of France. It assailants, those attacking. was here that Marshal Soult, veterans, old soldiers. one of Napoleon I.'s bravest rampart, fortification. generals, determined to oppose traverse, protected way. the entry of Wellington into labyrinth, winding way. France through the Pyrenees. conspicuous, noted, distinguished. He spent some months in the brigade, a division of soldiers. construction of fortifications redoubts, small forts. along the river and on the Sir W. Napier, who wrote this neighbouring heights, which graphic account of the comwere spurs from the Pyrenees. mencement of the battle, was Rhune and Atchubia, names of a commander under Welling.
summits to offshoots from the ton, and also the historian of Pyrenees.
the Peninsular War. The artillery, cannon.
battle was fought Nov. 10, hog's back, ridge of the mountain. 1813.
Where is Nievelle? Who commanded the battle on the British side? Who on the French ? Describe the commencement of the battle. What regiment led the attack? In what part of the fortification did the French make a stand? What general displayed great bravery though wounded? How many men attacked from the British side? What was the prize of the battle?