« ZurückWeiter »
rinced him of his mistake, and made him bear away with bis fleet and transports. He was apparently disconceited and at a tuss how to act; but after much hesitation, bore down with ten sail of the line upon the Britirh squadron, just before noon. He met with so warm a reception from the ships and batteries, that after a while he drew off. About four o'clock he made a fresh attack with twelve ships of the line ; which was better supported and longer continucd than the first. The French cannonade concentrated within a narrow direction, and was heavier than hefore; but this effort was not more effcctual than the forme. The count's fleet fell into evident confusion, and retired froin action with great loss. On the following day he plied to the windward, and anchored in the evening oft Gross-Islet, about two leagues to the northward. The night and the next morning he spent in landing his troops in Choc Bay, between Gross-Isiet and the Careenage. The same time was employed by the British admiral in preparing for every possible future event.
General Meadows, with the reserve, was nearly shut up in the peninsula of the Viergie ; for by his distance and situatico, as well as the decided superiority of the enemy, he was totally cut off from the support of the main body, any further than what mighư be derived from those batteries commanding the land ap. proaches to the Viergie, which that possessed. The good effect of those positions which had been taken by the British on their first landing, became now apparent to both armics. The chagrin and disappointment of the French was great, when after landing they discovered that Sir H. Calder's brigade was in possession of the mountains on the south side of the grand Cúl de Sac; for the bombarding of the British ficet from those heiglits, was one great object they had in view; which, from the strong positions taken by that brigade, was nnattainable without a general engagement by sea and land, the issue of which the French were nolas yet for trying. They determined upon directiog their first effort separately against Meadows. (Dec. 18.) For this purpose about 5000 of their best troops were drawn out, and advanced in three columns to attack the British lines, reaching across the isthmus, which joins the peninsula to the continent. The riglit was led by count d'Estaing, the centre by Mr. Lovendall, and the left by the marquis d'Bouille. The remainder of their troops were kept disengaged to watch the motions of Prescot's brigade, and to check any attempt to succour Meadows. On the near approach of the columns, they were enfiladed with great effect by the aforementioned batteries ; however, they rushed on to the charge with great impetuosity, supported the conflict with much resolution, and suffered considerably before they were
As soon as they had recovered their breath and order, they renewed the attack with the same ea. gerness as before ;--and were encountered with the same determined resolution. Though they suffered severely in these two attacks, thiey again rallied, and returned to the charge the third time. The affair was now soon decided. They were totally broken, and obliged to retire in the utmost confusion, leaving their dead and wounded in the power of the victors. Gen. Mcadows was wounded in the beginning of the action, but would not quit the field, nor have the assistance of the surgeons, till the matter was decided. The French while employing their troops by land, attempted a diversion by sea, which had so little effect as to deserve no further notice. Their loss was four lun. dred killed upon the spot, five hundred desperately wounded, so as to be incapable of service, and six hundred more slightly wounded: the whole amounting to a number considerably superior to those whoin they had encountered.
Count d'Estaing continued ten days longer on the island without making further attempts, and then relinquished a contest which had only manifested the courage of the French, without yielding any profit. He embarked his troops on the night of the twenty-eighth, and on the following day abandoned the isl.. and to its destiny. He was not out of sight, when the chevalier de Micaud, with the principal inhabitants, offered to capitulate and had favorable conditions granted them, which were signed on the 30th. Admiral Byron arrived off St. Lucie the 6th of January.
When the late law in favor of tiie English Roman Catholics was passed, a design was formed of extending it to Scotland, which was violently opposed. The opposition originated in Glasgow, the inhabitants of which are almost all on the side of administration in the American contest. * The general indignation acainst the design showed itself in the different riots that happened at Edinburgh and Glasgow in February. In the metropolis, an attack was made [Feb. 3.] upon a new house, in which the principal popish clergyman or bishop, with four other families of the same persuasion dwelt, and in which a room was laid out for a chapel, about 34 feet long. : The house was set on fre and the flames continucd until noon of the following day.--
The inhabitants with difficulty escaped alive. During the demolition of this main pillar of popery," as it was called, a detachment from the main body of the people resorted to the old chapel. The house containing it was inhabited by several familias (agreeable to custom, and the nature of many buildings in . * Dr. John E.kine's Considerations on the Spirit of Popery, p.31. VOL. II, H 3
that city) whose property and effects, as well as the inside of the house and chapei, were totally destroyed, together with a consis derable library belonging to the popislı bishop. The rioters afterward directed their violence against the papists in other parts of the town, and totally destroyed the stock in trade and effects of two or three tradesmen of that profession. One or two ladies of fashion of that communion were obliged to take refuge in the castle. They at length concluded upon the punishment or des struction of these gentlemen, of whatever rank or religion, who had been supposed to favor the design of obtaining a relaxation of the laws against papists. Their first.fury was pointed against Dr. Robertson the celebrated historian, and to that of Mr. Crosbie, an eminent advocate. The mob found the houses of these gentlemen so well armed, and guarded with so determined a reso. lution by their numerous friends, that they proceeded not to extremities, but retired without any further outrage than the breaking of some windows. The magistrates did not exert them. selves for the suppression of the riots, till the last day of the weck. The conduct of the magistrates in Glasgow was widely different. The populace made their first and principal attack (Feb. 9,) upon Mr. Bagnal, an English papist from Staffordshire, who had for several years established and conducted a considerable manufactory of stone-ware. They burnt his house, totally destroyed all the works for carrying on his business, and obliged him and his fainily to fly to the fields for their lives. But the measures pursued by the magistrates and principal inhabitants soon restored order and security. Mr. Bagnal was also speedily acquainted, that he should be reiinbursed for every part of his losses to the utmost farthing, Toward the end of march the citi zens of Edinburgh agreed to make full restitution to the sufferers in that city. Through this religious coinbustion, and the circumstances attending it, administration have lost that strong hoid of the temper and disposition of the people in Scotland, which perhaps nothing else could have loosened.
The British cruisers seized and carried into port the Dutci: vessels bound for France, when laden with either naval stores or supposed French property. The merchants, owners and insurers, complained to their high inightinesses, by whosc order a memorial was presented to the British court which was far from having the desired effect. The answer proposed the purchasing of the naval stores, the paying of the frieght, and the indemnifying the proprietors ;. but expressed a determination to prevent, as much as possible, all naval and military stores being transported into the French ports, accompanied however with an assurance, that all possible regard for the rights of their high mightinesses should be exercised, and that the stipulations and spirit of the treaties between the king and their high mightinesses, would be adhered to in the strongest manner us far asit should be practicable-a of which the British court would be judges. The merchants of Dort, Rotterdam and Amsterdam, not being satisfied with the answer, petitioned their high mightinesses for redress against the British treatment of their flag, and the violences committed against their property. The States Genietal concluded upon such measures as should meet the wishes of the petitioners, and determined upon an augmentation of the fieet for their protection. Sir Joseph Yorke, after that, on the 22d of Last November, proposed in a memorial by his sovereign's order 2 conference with their high mightinesses upon what was most proper to be done respecting the articles of complaint. The States General declined the offer, and insisted upon the literal and strict observance of the treaty between them and Great-Britain. The French king had in a regulation of the preceding July, concerning the navagation of neutral vessels, reserved to himself the power of revoking the advantages granted by the first article, in case the belligerent powers should not grant the like within the space of six months. The like not being granted on the part of Britain the king ordered such revocation, with respect to the subjects of the Dutch republic ; but excepted the cities of Ainsterdam and Haerlem, because of their patriotic exertions topcrsuade the republic to procure from the court of London the security of unlimited liberty to their flag. This measure was considered by that court, as designed to cause the republic to quarrel with GreatBritain, and occasioned the presentment [April 9.] of a memorial by Sir Joseph Yorke, in the name of his sovereign, to the States General; in which the literal and strict observance of the treaty insisted upon by them is pronounced incompatible with the security of Britain, and contrary to the spirit and stipulations of all the former treaties between the two nations. His majesty also declares in it, that he cannot depart from the necessity be is under of excluding the transportation of naval stores to the ports of France and particularly timber, even if they are escorted by men of war; but flatters himself, that he shall never be obliged to take other measures toward the republic, than those which friendship, and good harmony may dictate.
The capture of the Dutch vessels occasioned a great dearth of naval stores at Brest, so that the repair of count d'Orvilliers' ricet has been exceedingly hindred. The Ville de Paris, which siftered much in the engagement with admiral Keppel, will not be ready for sca, much before the line for the fleet's sailing. Till
April there was not a mast fit for her in all Brest.* A number of store ships however got in from Holland, so that about the beginning of the year, several small squadrons were prepared and slipped out from different ports nearly at the same time : one under Mr. de Grasse for Martinico, to reinforce count d'Estaing. Another under the marquis de Vaudreuil, with a land force, sailed for Africa, and has taken the British forts, settlements, factories and property, at Senegal and other parts of that coast... . (1778.] The English East-India company, foreseeing actual hostilities, resolved, very soon after the delivery of the French rescript, on a bold and decisive measure, for the final reduction of the French power in India, and conducted the business with unusual secrecy. Their instructions were happily conveyed with uncommon expedition, and preparations were immediately made for besieging Pondicherry, Gen. Munro invested the fortress closely on the 21st of last August, with an army of 10,500 men, including 1500 Europeans. But before this had taken place, there was a warm engagement between Sir Edward Vernon, with a small squadron, and monsieur Tronjolly commanding the like, in which the French were so roughly handled, that to escape a second action they abandoned the garrison, to their fate on the day Pondicherry was invested. The garrison amounted to near 3000 men, of which 900 were Europeans. They were commanded by Mr. de Bellecombe, who disputed every point of his ground, and persevering to the last extremity in a determined and noble defence, held out to the 16th of October. An honorable capitulation was allowed in testimony of the garrison's galJantry, and every requisition that did not interfere with the public benefit was agreed to. The factories at Cliandenagor, Yaman, and Karical, with the settlement at Masulipatam, had been reduced before the capitulation.
[May 1, 1779.] The New-York, Quebec and Newfoundland fleets, to the number of 300, under the convoy of admiral Arbuthnot, sailed from Spithead: the admiral, with a squadron of men of war and a number of transports, is bound to NewYork.
* Advocate M'I
's Political Memoirs,