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extraordinary man; but a sketch of his the Danube. After the relief of Silistria appearance, from the pen of an observer, and the retreat of the Russians, Omar Pasha will doubtless not prove tedious. "Omar removed his head-quarters from Schumla to Pasha was dressed with neatness and sim- Rustchuk, on the banks of the river. On plicity; no order glittering on his breast; the 3rd of July, while Omar was on his visit and his close-fitting blue frock-coat dis- to the French and English generals, the played no ornaments beyond a plain gold Turks made a successful attack on the island shoulder-strap and gilt buttons. He wore of Radoman, which lay in the Danube bethe fez cap, which showed to advantage the tween Rustchuk, and Giurgevo, and formed clear well-marked lines of his calm and one of the outworks of the latter place. resolute face, embrowned by exposure to The action was renewed on the 5th and wind and weather for many a year of a 7th of the month, when the Turkish soldier's life, and the hue of which was well forces crossed the river both above and contrasted with his snow-white whiskers. below Giurgevo, and completely surrounded In the rude, and rather sensual mouth, a Russian detachment under General Soimonoff. The Russians fought their way through with great difficulty and considerable loss. The Turks, however, did not escape scathless; their loss in killed and wounded amounting, according to their own return, to 1,700. On this occasion, three English officers, Captain Arnold, Lieutenant Meynell, and Lieutenant Burke, who accompanied the Turkish expedition, perished beneath the Russian fire while encouraging and cheering on the Ottoman soldiers. The Turks remained in possession of Giurgevo; and though the loss was severe on both sides, this action on the 7th was regarded as a brilliant affair.
The fate of Lieutenant Burke was remarkable, and deserves special mention. On leaping on shore from the boat, six Russian soldiers charged him. He shot two with his revolver, and cut down a third with his sword, upon which the others turned and fled. While encouraging the Turks, who were yet on the river, to row quietly to land, and forming them in line as they made the bank, a deliberate aim was taken at him by a number of riflemen who advanced from behind a ditch. Charging them with headlong gallantry, he was struck by a ball which broke his jaw. Still he rushed on, shot three men dead at close quarters with his revolver, and cleft two men through head and helmet with his sword. Though surrounded, he still fought with heroic courage, and endeavoured to cut his way through the ranks of the enemy, when a sabre-cut from behind, given by a dragoon as he went by, nearly severed his head from his body, and he fell dead, covered with bayonetwounds, sabre-gashes, and gashed with lance-thrusts and bullet-holes. His body was found, after the action, with as many as thirty-three wounds upon it, and the ring-finger of each hand cut off.
with compressed thick lips, was traceable, if physiognomy have truth, enormous firmness and resolution. The chin, full and square, evinced the same qualities, which might also be discerned in the general form of the head. Those who remember the statue of Radetzky, at the Great Exhibition, will understand what I mean. All the rougher features, the coarse nose, and the slight prominence of the cheek-bones, are more than redeemed by the quick, penetrating, and expressive eye, full of quiet courage and genius, and by the calm though rather stubborn brow, marked by lines of thought, rising above the thick shaggy eyebrow. In person he appeared to be rather below than above the middle height; but his horse, a well-trained grey, was not so tall as the English chargers beside him, and he may really be more than five feet seven or eight. His figure is light, spare, and active; and his seat on horseback, though too Turkish for our notions of equestrian propriety, was firm and easy. He wore white gloves and neat boots, and altogether would have passed muster very well in the ring at Hyde-park as a well-appointed quiet gentleman. His staff were by no means so well turned out; but the few hussars of the escort were stout soldierlike-looking fellows. One of them led a strong chestnut Arab, which was the pasha's battle charger."
The English troops presented arms to Omar, and performed some field-day manœuvres much to his satisfaction. But what completely rivetted his attention was some charges of our cavalry, after witnessing which, he declared that such infantry and cavalry could dash over any troops in the world. As he rode from the field the soldiers cheered him enthusiastically, to his great delight.
To return to the contest on the banks of
After this engagement, Prince Gortscha- | the world has recognised as men of genius koff advanced with a large force, said to in the art of war. Their object has been to amount to 70,000 men, with artillery in spare the necessity of striking twice, and proportion, to Frateschti, a place within six they have usually accomplished their aims miles of Giurgevo, and offered battle to by making their first blow so sure, so deadly, Omar Pasha, who no longer confined him- and so appalling, that their enemies were self to a defensive policy, but became, in awed into submission. Such a blow might his turn, the assailant. The Turks did not have been struck at Russia in the first wild accept the challenge to a great battle; but clash of hostilities; and, had it been struck, on the 8th of July a sanguinary engagement, it would have palsied the uplifted arm of which terminated in favour of the Turks, that semi-barbaric power, and have sent a took place at Oltenitza. On the 9th also, shock to the heart of her people all throughSali Pasha, the commander of Nicopolis, out her gigantic territories, that should have crossed the river with a considerable force, taught a bitter moral lesson not to be forand attacked the Russians under General gotten ;-a lesson that, in its bloody sevePopoff. After a desperate conflict, the rity, would have chained down the rising latter retreated, their commander being despotism of the north for the next halfseverely wounded. The retreat of the Rus- century, taught brute force and blind sians was so hurried that some of the men inertness that it could not control intellect tasted nothing for four-and-twenty hours, and progression, and the remembrance of and others were unable to obtain food for which would have fallen like a chill upon six-and-thirty hours. This is explained by the heart of future czars when the thoughts the fact, that the victorious Turks on their of unjust ambition arose yet dim and unrear took no prisoners, but slaughtered all shaped in their minds. Had this been who fell into their hands. On the 10th done, Turkey might have been placed in another serious conflict took place: the security; the Christians in the East emanciTurkish commander, with 25,000 men, de-pated from the thraldom of the Crescent; feated Generals Pauloff and Soimonoff, at Nicholas have gone in bitter disappointthe head of a superior force, and drove the ment to his grave, overwhelmed by the Russians back upon Bucharest. Another rushing flood of retributive justice; Europe action took place on the 11th, when the have remained in peace, and the labour of Turks attacked and routed the Russian rear- millions (no longer drained by the exhaustguard at Frateschti, on the road from Giur- ing influences of a tedious war) have devoted gevo to Bucharest. The Turks had crossed their efforts to the maintenance of tranthe Danube at several points, and remained quillity, to the production of those natural in considerable force upon the left bank. blessings requisite for their existence, to the Particulars of these events are wanting; cultivation of national alliances and goodbut one fact in connection with them was will, and to the adornment of their several known well enough: that is, that the allied lands with works of beauty and grandeur, forces did not render the slightest assis- that should stand as monuments to posterity tance, but left the Turks entirely to their of the glories and triumphs of peace!
And why was not this one fierce yet merciful blow struck? Why have France and England, in the fulness of their might and civilisation, shrunk back and remained in opprobrious slothfulness, while the semibarbarians of the East have vindicated their own honour and independence; and, by their noble daring and endurance, cast a mantle of shame over those who patronisingly promised them assistance? Why is it left to the unborn historians of the future to record the heroism of the Turks and the dilatory hesitation of France and England? Why is this? We fear it is because a too timid and subservient policy sways councils; because we have no great statesmen in the cabinet or great soldiers in the
Had the allies of Turkey done their duty; had Austria poured her thousands into Wallachia, and directed them against the Russian forces; and had the French and English marched to the Danube, and there imitated the example of a famous English captain of past times, John, Duke of Marlborough, the invading armies of Russia might either have been driven back to their own land with disgrace, or, if a sterner policy had prevailed, swept into swift and dark annihilation. To strike a rapid, unsparing, and awful blow upon a powerful enemy is mercy in the end; for it saves an incalculable amount of suffering and blood. Such has ever been the policy of all soldiers whom
field; because mediocrity sits in the seats of genius; and the soldiers of routine are left to follow their own interests by protracting a war which the interests of humanity and the honour of the allied powers demand to have been deserved. England, said the should be speedily ended. The mere pro- venerable warrior who has but so lately fessional soldier, who fights by the stop-been withdrawn from the ranks of the watch, and who would rather not win a living, cannot embark in a little war. We battle unless the victory was obtained in would add, that England must not conduct strict accordance with military art and war in a little manner; but when she has etiquette, urges, in excuse for the inaction made great preparations for a noble cause, of the allies, that the marshes of the Danube millions of English voices will demand that are unhealthy; that to lead the armies her resources be not wasted in inaction, and there would be to expose the lives of the her soldiers left to die of disease instead of men to sickness; and that, therefore, such being led to victory! a step would not have been prudent. We We mentioned the blockade of the mouths cannot pass a certain judgment on this of the Danube by the allied fleets; and we point, but to us the objection sounds like have now to record a melancholy accident in the ready excuse of timidity or indolence. connexion with that event. During the Not as regards the soldiers of France and month of July (on the 8th), the Russian England: they are brave enough; that has works at the Sulina mouth of the Danube been proved again and again, and they are were bombarded by the English steam-friknown to have manifested a great desire to gates, partially destroyed, and taken posseshurry to the scene of action, and mingle in sion of. The English then set to work and the honourable struggle. The charge of repaired the Russian batteries, that they timidity or indolence does not attach to might be used against the enemy if necesthem, but to the mysterious restraining sary. The allies also occupied themselves power that withheld them; to the obse-in removing certain vessels which the Rusquious policy which, even after the sword sians had sunk in the mouth of the Danube, was drawn, would fain persuade the czar to and the navigation of the river was thrown forego the rich territory he had marked out open. After this necessary proceeding, the for his prey, and act with peaceful modera- Russian steam flotilla, which had hitherto tion for the future; to those who trust, occupied the river in defiance of the allies, against all reason, to the hollow forms of a wandered up and down almost in despair of rotten diplomacy which has failed again and safety. again, instead of depending on the might of two great and willing nations to set the wrong right, and with one swift, sudden, deadly blow, smite down the arrogant injustice of barbarism. What, we would ask, was gained by not exposing the allied troops to the sickness said to prevail in Bulgaria and Wallachia? Did not the diseases engendered by idleness, by bad food, and exposure to a foreign climate, fall like a pestilence upon the allied forces? It will soon be our duty to relate the work of the deadly and unsparing cholera upon those brave men who pined in vain for action, and who perhaps in the excitement roused by it, might perhaps have escaped a visitation which, in its inscrutable attacks and subtle withering influence, robs even those who escape with life of their spirit and hardihood, and (to use the usual technical though not very explanatory term) demoralises an army. We know that apologists for the course pursued by the allied govern
ments have been found in scores; but we know that many writers of the public press have appealed to the public for forbearance when they have themselves deemed censure
After the capture of Sulina, many of our thoughtless seamen supposed that the Russians had altogether abandoned the neighbourhood, and thence arose a degree of confidence or negligence that led to a fatal result. On the 7th of July, Captain Parker, of the Firebrand, planned a little excursion up the river, for the purpose of destroying some works that were occupied by the Russians. Accordingly he entered his gig, and pulled up the stream, followed by a second boat from his own vessel, and by a third, containing Captain Powell, of the Vesuvius.
The town or village of Sulina is almost surrounded by a jungle of reeds, where stockades had been formed for the defence of the place by the enemy. These reeds are so high, that they conceal both men and horses from the view of any one ascending the stream by a boat, and consequently furnish shelter from which a stubborn enemy could harass troops whom he did not feel
inclined to meet in open combat. Instead | frightful state from the result of no less of abandoning the neighbourhood, the Rus- than five bullet-wounds. Struck with pity sian soldiers had occupied the jungle which at the wretched condition of these poor lines the banks of the river, and there Bulgarian children, Captain Parker had awaited their revenge. As Captain Parker's them sent on board the Firebrand, and boat came abreast of a stockade, supposed properly attended to; at the same time to have been long deserted, a shower of expressing his intention of taking them bullets saluted it from an unseen foe. A under his own protection. The poor little ball passed through the surgeon's coat; things became great favourites with the others whistled near the heads of the crew, sailors, who nursed them with more tendersome of whom were wounded; and the ness than could be deemed compatible with boat was riddled. Captain Parker laughed their habits and mode of life. On the at the Russians for being such bad marks- eldest they bestowed the name of Johnny men, and put back to obtain the assistance Firebrand; he was a fine intelligent little of the other boats. A momentary consulta- fellow, and soon began to pick up English. tion was held; then the sailors rowed ra- The poor children were carried by the pidly towards the stockade, and Captain sailors to the funeral of their benefactor. Parker leapt lightly on shore to lead the It is probable that these little things, thus attack. Almost instantaneously did he nursed in danger, and reared upon the sea, meet the fate he had so recklessly pro- may grow up to be brave dashing sailors. voked. Scarcely had he taken a few steps, when a bullet went through his heart, and he fell a corpse. Captain Powell then assumed the command, and despite a brave resistance, the Russians were driven from their stronghold in a few minutes. Two Russian officers stood calmly at the embrasures of the stockade, and were shot by the English sailors while directing their men where to fire. Besides the loss of Captain Parker, five men were wounded; three of them very severely. Captain Powell stated: "There was no means of computing the enemy's loss, although they were seen to fall inside the entrenchments. I am disposed to think that they were assisted in carrying off their wounded, and even defending the place, by some Greeks; as men in the dress of that country were seen intermixed with the Russian troops."
Captain Parker had but just completed his twenty-ninth year: he was the son of Admiral Hyde Parker, and belonged to a family distinguished in the naval annals of his country. It has been well observed, that the actual amount of fighting (as far as the helpers of Turkey had been concerned) was, up to this period, so insignificant, that the death of a single officer created a sensation which those accustomed to the heavy "butcher's bills" of former wars could scarcely understand. The body of Captain Parker was taken to Constantinople in the Firebrand, and buried on the 12th of July, in the grand Champ de Morts at Pera. The funeral ceremony was performed with full military honours, much to the astonishment of the Turks, who use no rites at the burial of their dead, except in the case of the sultan and his family.
Captain Parker was much regretted by the officers and crew of the Firebrand, because he was not only a brave, but an exceedingly amiable man. The following incident forms a good instance of the humanity of his character. About four months previous to his death his vessel touched at Kostendje, from which place some Cossacks had just retreated, leaving behind them many tokens of their barbarity. One hut contained a pitiable spectacle. In it lay the bodies of a man and woman; and upon the latter lay a living infant but a few months' old, its tiny hand extended on its mother's breast, and its little wrist lacerated by the bullet which had deprived her of life. Close by was a little terror-stricken boy, of about three years old, whose left arm was in a
To return to the Turks at Rustchuk and Giurgevo. A party of thirty English sailors, under Lieutenant Glyn and Prince Leiningen, R.N., and the same number of sappers under Captain Page, R.E., arrived at the former place, for the purpose of assisting in the construction of a bridge over the Danube at that point. The sailors arrived from Varna on horseback, much to their own amusement and to that of those whom they met. The sappers were sent over to Giurgevo, to assist in the fortifications there. These men were the first Englishmen that crossed the Danube in the cause of the Ottoman. A laughable event took place on the 15th of the month, the relation of which will lighten up the grim monotony of repeated skirmishes. Colonel Iskander Beg, a brave cavalry officer
in the Turkish service, was reconnoitring at | for, while it was carried on, the heat was so some distance from Slobosia, attended only excessive, that the thermometer stood at by four or five men, when he beheld at some 104 in the shade. Great numbers of the distance an infantry sentry of the enemy's, men must have been left exhausted or dead and resolved to attempt capturing him. As upon the road. On leaving Bucharest,* they approached, more soldiers were seen on the 1st of August, Prince Gortschakoff behind the sentry, and some of the party assembled the Boyards, (i. e. nobles,) and began to fear that they might catch a Tartar; thanked them for the manner in which they but the colonel was not to be deterred, and had treated the Russian troops during their he pushed on. With a sudden puff of wind stay in Bucharest. This was very much like the sentries commenced a series of eccentric a highwayman, pistol in hand, thanking his rotatory movements of a kind the colonel victim for the liberal manner in which he had never seen soldiers execute before. had surrendered his purse. The scarce-hidRushing forward, with sword in hand, he den joy of the poor Wallachians at the dediscovered about twenty Russian great-coats parture of their oppressors, was dashed with and caps, cleverly stuffed with straw, and gloom by the general adding, that strategic placed on sticks, so as to revolve with the reasons alone induced him to quit the city; wind. As may be supposed, no quarter was but that it was not improbable he might shown; the sentries were demolished without return at an early period.† But the Turkish mercy, one only being carried back as pri- advanced guard entered Bucharest, and the soner to the camp, where it excited the fears of the poor Wallachians were much laughter even of the grave Turks. relieved. The Boyards, having fairly got rid of the Russians, addressed an invitation to Omar Pasha, and voted a loyal address to the sultan. As Omar advanced he issued a proclamation, stating that it was not his intention to make the Wallachian territory the theatre of war; and that the Russians should be compelled to indemnify the people of that province, for the losses the latter had sustained during the unlawful occupation. The Russians, while at Bucharest, said that their retreat had been commanded, in consequence of a melancholy confidential report sent home by General Gortschakoff, relative to the action of the 7th at Giurgevo. After reading the report, the czar is said to have exclaimed: "I can comprehend that my army was repulsed from Silistria, though I had expected another account from the Prince of Warsaw; but what I cannot understand is, that a wild horde of half-naked Turks, after an engagement on the water, and having taken our fortified islands by storm, should have dislodged my troops, with such a heavy loss, from a position which they had been a whole year fortifying."
On the 19th of July, another engagement took place between the Turks and Russians, on the banks of the Danube, at Giurgevo, or rather between that place and Frateschti, and ended in the total defeat of the Russians. Again, upon the 23rd, the Russians made an attack upon the Turkish camp, near Giurgevo, with the design of driving the Ottoman army to the Bulgarian shore of the Danube, or at the least of arresting their further progress into Wallachia. The attack failed; the Russians are said to have lost 2,000 men in killed and wounded, and to have had 5,000 taken prisoners. The result of these actions was seen in a second retreat of the Russians from Wallachia. On the 27th they abandoned Frateschti, and the advancing Turks took possession of it. Oltenitza and Bucharest were also evacuated; and the Russians retired, by forced marches, towards Moldavia. The czar, however, showed no signs of submission; and it was conjectured that this abandonment of Wallachia was effected merely for strategic reasons, and to withdraw the Russian troops from the neighbourhood of Austria. This retreat must have been a sad and painful movement;
The humiliation of Russia was further evident from the fact that Prince Gortscha
• Bucharest is the capital of Wallachia; and the Boyards, who reside there, frequently compare it with Paris in point of civilisation and luxury. It has, however, no just claim to any such pretensions. It is described as resembling a large village, the houses being surrounded with gardens. The city is illpaved, ill-built and dirty. It is the entrepôt for the commerce between Austria and Turkey. It contains ninety-five churches and twenty-six monasteries, seven hospitals, a college, a museum, and two theatres,
The population is about 100,000, and consists chiefly of Germans, Greeks, and Armenians. The sympathy of the lower classes is said to be on the side of the Turks; most of the nobles lean the same way, but some of them would readily welcome Russian rule.
†M. Ubicini, a well-known political writer, shortly afterwards published a detailed account of the losses the two principalities suffered in consequence of their lawless occupation by the Russian troops. He estimates it at 200,000,000 francs.