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ficer. In no vote of thanks had the commander in chief ever before been left out. The conduct of Sir Hyde Parker, who had entrusted the execution of the business at Copenhagen in 1801 to Lord Nelson, became a subject of animadversion: yet Sir Hyde Parker was thanked by both houses. If the conduct of Sir A. W. instead of producing a brilliant result, had led to some disaster, Sir H. B. would have been responsible, and it would have been no excuse that he had delegated the command to Sir A. Wellesley.-The name of Sir Harry Burrard, under all these circumstances, ought not to be omitted in the vote of thanks, and he therefore moved, that it should be inserted.

The Chancellor of Exchequer, in reply to Mr. Whitbread, said, that with respect to the case of Sir Hyde Parker at Copenhagen, that Admiral had been thanked for the disposition he had made. But Sir H. Burrard did not lay claim either to the disposition or execution. In answer to Lord Folkstone, he said, that though the British troops in the field were superior in number to the French, yet, out of eight brigades, of which the army consisted, only five had been engaged in the action.*

General Stewart, after professing the highest respect for Sir H. Burrard, said, that he had not the good fortune to be present at the battle of Vimiera, but that he arrived soon after, and observed the

sentiment of enthusiasm in favour of Sir A. W. that prevailed from the general to the drummer. It was impossible for him adequately to describe it. But he might use the emphatic language of an experienced general who had served in most of our armies on the continent, and was fully capable of judging of the question-he meant general Anstruther, an officer for whom he entertained the sincerest love and affection, who had promised to become one of the brightest ornaments of the British army, but who, unfortunately for his country, died in consequence of the fatigue of the late retreat. That distinguished officer had stated to him that it was impossible for him to conceive any thing more admirable than the conduct of Sir A. W. from the commencement of his operations to the result of the battle of Vimiera; that there was no difficulty which he did not contrive to obviate; that his mind was full of resources; that he managed his army like a machine, of the nature of which he was complete master; and that no officer he ever saw conducted the operations of an army with more distinguished ability.-That such was the opinion entertained of Sir A.W. by general Anstruther, was confirmed by

Mr. W. Adam, who had seen a letter written by the general on the field of battle, in which he said, that such was the confidence of the army of Vimiera in Sir A. W. and such his talents for com

It is not to be expected that lawyers should be competent judges of military plans and operations. There are few military officers, we presume, who will not admit that different corps may be as advantageously posted as if they were brought inmediately, or at the commencement, and in the first stage, into action. If they are not so posted, it must be the fault of the general.

E 2

mand,

mand, that there was nothing that army would not attempt under that commander, and few things that they would not achieve. Mr. Adam was particularly anxious to express his strong approbation of what had fallen from the honourable general respecting brigadier general Anstruther. It was impossible to speak too highly of the military merit, the capacity in all respects, and the excellent character of that officer, who, if his life had not been lost to the public, would have been in the list of those this day to receive the thanks of their country.* Mr. Adam speaking with great interest and feeling of general Ferguson, stated, that he knew from the best authority that Sir A. W. had said, that the intrepid gallantry and conduct with which general Ferguson led on his troops to the charge was the finest thing he had ever seen in his military service. He thought that his honourable friend, Mr. Whitbread, would prejudge the matter, by his amendment as it regarded Sir H. Burrard.—Mr. W. in compliance with the recommendation of his honour able friend, withdrew his motion; retaining however the opinion he had already expressed, that Sir `H. B. was entitled to the thanks of the house. The amendment being withdrawn, the resolution for a vote of thanks to Sir A. W. was put and carried. The thanks

of the house were next voted to major generals Spencer, Hill, and Ferguson; and to brigadier generals Ackland, Nightingale, Fane, and Bowes, and the officers under their command. A resolution was then agreed to, expressive of the approbation of that house, of the conduct of the non-commissioned officers and privates.

On the same day, January 25, in the House of Lords, the Earl of Liverpool rose to move the thanks of the house for the defeat before Corunna. After a handsome eulogium on Sir John Moore, and some observations on the difficulties encountered in the retreat, and the battle in which it terminated, and stating that in wording the motion, the precedent of Egypt, in which the gallant Abercrombie fell, had been followed, moved the thanks of the house to lieutenant-general Sir D. Baird second in command of the army in Spain; lieutenant-general the hon. John Hope, who took the command on Sir John Moore's receiving the wound, which terminated in his much-lamented death, and to the other officers employed. All the lords who spoke on this occasion concurred heartily in this motion, bestowed the highest praise on the character and conduct of Sir John Moore, and deeply deplored his loss to the country. But the Earl of Moira, in giving his concurrence, could not avoid asking

It is with particular satisfaction that we record these honourable testimonies in favour of general Anstruther. In his early years, when preparatorily to his entrance into the army, he was prosecuting mathematical and other studies at St. Andrews, he attracted the love and esteem of all around him, by the mildness and benignity of his disposition, the quickness of his parts, and his aptitude for study, and the acquirement of all manner of knowledge. Every one wondered at his choice of a military life, as kind nature seemed to have “formed him for the studious shade,” both by the powers of his mind, and the delicacy of his bodily constitution.

ministers,

ministers, how it had happened that so heavy and lamentable a loss as that of Sir John Moore, and so great a proportion of his army, had been sustained, without any one object having been obtained except the embarkation of the army? British blood and treasure, and the invaluable lives of British officers and soldiers had been sacrificed to no purpose. To what but the ignorance and incapacity of ministers were all these calamities to be attributed? Lord Erskine too, who felt as much for the fame of the immortal officer deceased as any of their lordships could possibly feel, (from peculiar or personal circumstances which he detailed) could not refrain from expressing his indignation at such men, and that such resources as ours should have been utterly thrown away and lost by the total incapacity of those who had mis-directed their efforts.-Lord Grenville observed, that they were called upon to vote thanks for a success, followed by a retreat. The

success belonged to the army and its commander; the retreat to those who sent them, and placed them in such a situation that a safe retreat was the only thing that could be looked for. Ministers for the folly of such conduct must answer to their country.-The Earl of Westmoreland recollecting the expeditions to Alexandria, to Constantinople, and and to South America, was surprized that noble lords opposite did not at those periods state that all the blame of unfavourable military events was to be attributed to ministers.

The motion was agreed to nem. diss. so also was a motion acknowledging and approving the services of the non-commissioned officers and soldiers; a motion of thanks" to Rear Admiral de Courcy, and Sir Samuel Hood, and the other officers, for their assistance; and another, acknowledging and approving the services of the seamen and marines upon that occasion. Thanks to the same parties were also voted in the House of Commons.

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CHAP. IV.

Campaign in Portugal-Motion in the House of Commons, by Lord H. Petty, for a Resolution of the House, declaring that the Convention of Cintra, and a Maritime Convention concluded nearly at the same Time off the Tagus, had disappointed the Hopes and Expectations of the Country-And for a Second, declaring that in the Opinion of the House of Commons, those Conventions had, in a great measure, arisen from the Misconduct and Neglect of His Majesty's Ministers.-Opposed, and the Conduct of Ministry explained and defended by Lord Castlereagh.-Lord Petty's Motions supported by General Tarleton.-Views and Motives of Sir Arthur Wellesley throughout the Expedition to Portugal explained by himself--Speech of Mr. Windham in Reply to Lord Castlereagh.-Lord Petty's Motions negatived.-Campaign in Spain-Inquiry into moved in the House of Commons by Mr. Ponsonby.-Mr. Ponsonby's Motion supported by Mr. Windham-Opposed by Lord Castlereagh, Mr. Canning, and other Speakers.-Negatived.

ORD Henry Petty rose in pursuance of the notice he had given on the second day of the session, to call the attention of the house to the termination of the campaign in Portugal, by the Convention of Cintra. He was sure that in that house, it would not be thought that any form of inquiry relating to that convention, that had passed already, had been of a nature to preclude the expediency and necessity of that house taking up the inquiry itself; because, with whatever respect he might regard the individual and military characters of the persons who composed the Board of Inquiry, assembled by his Majesty's command, constituted as that board was, and its functions directed, it was a tribunal more incompetent to give satisfaction to the country, more irreconcileable with the known and received principles of law and equity in

this country, than any that had
ever existed. He held in his
hand the opinion delivered by my
Lord Woodhouselee on the sub-
ject of Courts of Inquiry. It was
there asserted by that able autho-
rity, that although there was in his
Majesty an inherent power to con-
vene such boards
as courts of
advice; yet still their decisions
have no binding effects on the
party accused. A court of inquiry,
held as this had been, opening its
doors to the public, calling upon
the very parties to give their tes-
timony, and drawing from them
information by which they were
to be subjected to criminal pro-
secution, was a tribunal calculated
rather to defeat than promote
the ends of justice, or give
satisfaction to the public. Even
by the constitution of the court
itself, it was impossible for it to
inquire into any demerits beyond
those of the officers. The opinion

of

of that court had been, that no further proceedings were necessary. But still this opinion left it open to that house to consider what had been the origin of the transactions, by which, in the eyes of the public, the principal object of the expedition to the peninsula, notwithstanding the success of the British arms, had been completely lost in disappointment and disgrace:-By the course of unexpected events, his Majesty's government, at the moment when called upon by circumstances for co-operation with Spain, had in actual readiness three distinct masses of disposable force. An intention was conceived of affording to that country the aid of a large military force, under the command of that gallant military officer, Sir Arthur Wellesley, and the ultimate destination of the expedition was Portugal. There was nothing in the possession of Portugal itself; nothing in the possession of the port of Lisbon, that could be a source of immediate succour to the Spaniards; nothing connected with the real interests of even our faithful ally, the Queen of Portugal, or of her subjects in Portugal, that could point out and justify that destination: for of all the calamities that could be inflicted on a country, the conquest of it by a power that is not able to retain it is the greatest; the country being thereby exposed to the calamities of two revolutions. There was, how ever, in that country a French army, and in its great port a Russian fleet. The capture of that army and the possession of that fleet were of the highest importance to this country. We

saw a French army in a position in which it was cut off from all means of assistance. Every man who looked to the French army in Portugal might say, that whatever should be the fate of the other armies of Buonaparte, here, at least, was an army cut off from all possibility of relief.

Lord Petty pointed out the considerations that were required to be most particularly attended to in this expedition. It required the most positive and clear instructions, with regard to the nature of it, to be given to the officer who was to have the command of it; the expedition being intended to act in different situations, according to the different circumstances in which it should find the country that was to be the scene of its operations, it was above all things necessary that it should be properly equipped for the service; that the commander of the expedition should at least have had the opportunity afforded him of choosing his own ground; and that after such discretion was confided to him, he should at least have been continued in his command. In all these respects, Lord H. P. on a review of the campaign, considered the conduct of ministers as deficient :-The shores of Portugal were not the first objects of the expedition. It fluctuated between the northern and southern coasts of Spain: ministers had been in important instances mis-informed; their instructions to the officers commanding our forces ill-concerted, wavering, and discordant. The suggestion of carrying the expedition to Portugal, far from having been founded upon any original E 4 determination,

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