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upon his fate.
ged him to wait but a few days longer. But argument and entreaty were vain. The evil star of the Stuarts had resumed its sway, and the unfortunate prince rushed headlong
It is said, too, that some of his officers had been bought over by the enemy, and treacherously labored to confirm him in his fatal resolution.
The ill-fated army was encamped on the plains of Culloden. The weather was piercing cold ; they had no beds but the heather, which served them also as fuel for their fires. Part were still dispersed among the mountains in search of provisions, and others were engaged in parcelling out a few cattle that had been brought in for food, when the columns of the enemy appeared upon the opposite border of the plain. Charles Edward had just taken his seat at table ; but instead of continuing his repast, though he had been for hours without food, he sprang instantly to his horse, and gave orders to range the troops for battle. The drum beat to arms, the bagpipes breathed forth, for the last time, the shrill gathering-call of the clans ; alarm-guns were fired to call in the stragglers. Soon they came pouring in, for it was a welcome sound, and, forgetful of their hunger and careless of their inferiority, they ranged themselves joyously in their ranks, each under the chief and the banner he had so often followed to victory. One good omen came to cheer them at the last moment; the Frazers and MacDonalds, who were supposed to be still many miles distant, came up in time to take their posts before the battle began. But the MacPhersons and the MacGregors, and half of the Glengarys, and nearly the whole clan of the MacKenzies, were still absent, and six thousand men were all that could be brought together for this last and decisive struggle.
The army was drawn up in two lines, the Highlanders in the first, the Lowlanders and foreign regiments in the second. Four pieces of cannon were placed at each extremity of the first line, and four in the centre. On the right of the first line was a squadron of the horse-guards ; and on the left of the second, Fitz-James's light-horse. The remainder of the cavalry was stationed with the reserve under Lord Kilmarnock. The prince took his stand on the right of the second line, on an eminence which commanded the field.
The Duke of Cumberland, profiting by the disasters of Hawley and Cope, had drawn up his men in three parallel
divisions, with his cannon on one flank, and his cavalry on the other. Each division being composed of four regiments, each regiment came in this manner to serve as a support for the other, so that, if the impetuous onset of the Highlanders should break through one, there would still be three more to overcome before they could complete their victory. And in order to deprive them of the defence of their targets, the men were ordered to present their bayonets obliquely, so as to aim their blow, not at the enemy immediately before them, but at the one at his side. As a record of Preston and Falkirk, free permission was granted, by the order of the day, to every one that was willing to confess himself a coward, to withdraw before the battle began ; and certain death was denounced as the punishment of those who dared to desert their posts after the signal had been given. “Flanders ! Flanders !” was the reply, for there, at least, these same men had won the name of veterans.
The plain of Culloden is a vast heath, extending from east to west, with nearly a level surface between the mountains and the sea. There was nothing in the nature of the ground to favor the tactics of the mountaineers, no strong position in which to make a stand, no elevation from which to rush down
On their right, but not near enough to rest upon, were the river Nairn and the mountains ; on their left, the sea and the parks of Cullodenhouse. The only elevation was on the opposite side of the plain, and that was in the hands of the enemy. The advantage of position, as well as of number, was against them.
It was one in the afternoon when the two armies drew nigh. The morning had been clear, but now the sky was suddenly overcast, and thick volumes of murky clouds began to darken the air. A violent wind arose from the northeast, accompanied with snow and rain, which it dashed in the faces of the Scotch, as it had done in those of their enemies on the plain of Falkirk. An indefinite dread, a superstitious horror, seized the minds of the Highlanders, for it was on their own heath and among their native mountains that the elements had declared against them.
The battle began by a cannonade, which on the part of the Highlanders did but little execution, for their artillerists had miscalculated the distance, and nearly all their shot fell short. But when the enemy came to fire in turn, their balls fell like hailstones on the Highland line, ploughing deep furrows wherever they struck the plain, and carrying death and confusion through the ranks. It was a fearful trial for those undisciplined mountaineers, accustomed as they always had been to come at once to close quarters, and decide every thing by the impetuosity of their onset. At length the order was given to advance, and again their war-cry rang loud and shrill, and each man, drawing his cap tight over his brow, firmly grasping his claymore in his right hand, and throwing out his dirk and target with his left, sprang forward with tiger fury to grapple with his foe. The English line stood firm to receive them, and, presenting their bayonets obliquely, met the shock without wavering. The targets glanced harmlessly along the polished barrels of the muskets, but the point of the bayonet went true to its mark, and with every thrust a Highlander fell
. Another struggle, and still another, and the mangled bodies of the dead and the dying, of friend and foe, were heaped up like a bulwark in front of the line. The first rank of the English was crushed, but a terrific cross-fire from the second came to support the bristling wall of bayonets, at whose feet the second rank of the Scotch fell, one upon another, before they could aim a blow in return. few still pressed onward with the recklessness of despair, but it was only to swell the bloody pile of victims, and Wolfe's regiment, formed en potence, now prepared with the reserve and the extreme right to envelope the survivors. The MacDonalds, dissatisfied at not having received their usual post on the right, refused to charge with the rest of the line, and after a short scattering fire retired from the field. Their chief alone rushed forward, with his shield-bearer and his nephew. " The children of my tribe abandon me
!" his melancholy cry, and a few moments afterwards he fell, pierced with wounds.
The rout of the first line was complete, but the second remained entire, and with this Charles Edward still hoped to win the day. His horse had checked the English cavalry, and could the Highlanders have been rallied, and induced to try their terrific charge once more, it might have been thrown back upon the infantry, and opened the way for the advance of the second line. « Courage !" cried the prince, riding in among them to place himself at their head; we can yet make the day our own." But their discouragement had
struck too deep, and his officers, gathering around him, forced him from the field. A part of the vanquished army fled towards Inverness, and part, crossing the Nairn, dispersed themselves among the mountains.
Resistance had ceased, but still the work of death went on. Cumberland lingered upon the plain to count his victims. “ Wolfe, blow out that insolent fellow's brains," said he to the future hero of Quebec, pointing out to him a wounded Highlander, who had raised his head upon his hand, and lay gazing upon his conqueror with a bitter smile. 6 I am no executioner," replied Wolfe, and the noble rebuke was long treasured up with the unerring tenacity of revenge.
The soldiers, animated by the example and approbation of their leader, gave full play to their thirst of blood. They mangled the wounded ; they mutilated the dead ; they dipped their hands in the blood, and threw it at one another with shouts and laughter, as children play with water. Those whom they did not see fit to despatch at once they stripped of their clothes, and, reserving them for a longer torture, left them naked upon the field, exposed to all the horrors of a tempest and a night among the mountains. Next day they returned, and renewed their fiendlike sports. A few unhappy wretches, less severely wounded, or stronger than their fellows, had survived the horrors of the night, and were still breathing. They were instantly despatched, and this might almost be called a deed of mercy. But on counting their victims anew, the third day after the battle, it was found that some had either escaped, or been carried away by their friends. A strict search was immediately instituted through all the cottages of the neighbourhood, and wherever a wounded soldier was found, he was mercilessly butchered. There was one small party which had taken refuge in a shed, where the shepherds had kindly sheltered them, and dressed their wounds. The shed was instantly set on fire, and the wounded men and their protectors were consumed in the flames, while a strong body kept guard around it, that none might escape.
Nineteen officers, after wandering two days and two nights in a wood, had been admitted into a court-yard of one of the Culloden-house farms. The moment that they were discovered, they were seized, tightly bound with cords that entered their wounds, dragged upon a cart to a neighbouring inclosure, and shot ; and the murderers, as if doubting the effects of their bullets, rushed in upon them as they lay stretched upon the ground, and completed their work of death by beating out their brains with their musketstocks. The imagination shrinks appalled from such wanton barbarity, and one is almost tempted to deny that deeds like these could have been perpetrated in a civilized country, and under the eyes of a son of the king of England. But the narratives which record them are of unquestionable authenticity, and, revolting as the picture is, we have not hesitated to sketch it, as a record' for our countrymen of the ideas which, only thirty years before the outbreak of our own revolution, the king of England and his soldiers attached to the name of rebel.*
Meanwhile, wearied, wounded, and disheartened, Charles Edward had directed his flight towards Gorthleek, a seat of Lord Lovat, the chief of the Frazers. His horse had been shot under him, and when he presented himself in the ball, with his garments soiled with mire and stained with blood, the vaunted courage of the wily old chief seemed to abandon him at the sight, and, instead of receiving his prince with words of consolation and respect, he broke out into exclarnations of despair at the ruin of his house, and the bloody fate which awaited his own gray hairs. After a few hours of repose, the prince resumed his flight, with only seven companions, part of whom he was soon compelled to separate from ; for the alarm had been spread, and numerous parties, allured by the price that had been set upon his head, were searching for him in every direction. Soon, the country became so rugged that he could no longer continue his way on horseback. The mountains rose on every side wild and broken, separated only by deep glens, where torrents, swollen and chilled by the rain and snow, were to be forded at every pass. A straggling sheep-path that he found from time to time was his only relief from climbing precipices, and letting himself down the sides of worn and slippery crags. Thus, after four days, he reached the little village
* Four hundred English officers had been released by Charles Edward upon parole. When the Duke of Cumberland came to take the command, he sent a circular to them, ordering them to join their regiments under pain of disobedience. All obeyed but four, who alone had the courage to reply to this insulting order, — " that the duke was master of their commissions, but not of their honor."