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      La Barre sailed for home; and the Marquis de Denonville, a pious colonel of dragoons, assumed the vacant office. * Faillon, Colonie Fran?aise, II. 244.


      Above all rulers of modern times, he was the embodiment of the monarchical idea. The famous words ascribed to him, I am the state, were probably never uttered; but they perfectly express his spirit. It is Gods will, he wrote in 1666, that whoever is born a subject should not reason, but obey; * and those around him were of his mind. The state is in the king, said Bossuet, the great mouthpiece of monarchy; the will of the people is merged in his will. Oh kings, put forth your power boldly, for it is divine and salutary to human kind. **"Onontio, give ear. I am the mouth of all my nation. When you listen to me, you listen to all the Iroquois. There is no evil in my heart. My song is a song of peace. We have many war-songs in our country; but we have thrown them all away, and now we sing of nothing but gladness and rejoicing."


      Late in the autumn, a thousand Iroquois, chiefly Senecas and Mohawks, had taken the war-path for the Hurons. They had been all winter in the forests, hunting for subsistence, and moving at their leisure towards their prey. The destruction of the two towns of the mission of St. Joseph had left a wide gap, and in the middle of March they entered the heart of the Huron country, undiscovered. Common vigilance and common sense would have averted the calamities that followed; but the Hurons were like a doomed people, stupefied, sunk in dejection, fearing everything, yet taking no measures for defence. They could easily have met the invaders with double their force, but the besotted warriors lay idle in their towns, or hunted at leisure in distant forests; nor could the Jesuits, by counsel or exhortation, rouse them to face the danger.

      FLIGHT OF THE ROYAL FAMILY OF PORTUGAL. (See p. 547.)


      [32] "Pioneers of France," 377.

      * La Hontan, II. 81 (ed. 1709).We left Wellington occupying his impregnable lines at Torres Vedras during the winter, and Massena occupying Santarem. Buonaparte thought he could suggest a mode of putting down the provoking English general which Massena did not seem able to conceive. After studying the relative situations of the belligerents, he sent word to Soult to make a junction with Massena by crossing the Tagus, and then, as he would be much superior in strength, to continually attack Wellington, and cause him, from time to time, to lose some of his men. He observed that the British army was small, and that the people at home were anxious about their army in Portugal, and were not likely to increase it much. Having thus weakened Wellington, as soon as the weather became favourable they were to make an attack from the south bank of the Tagus. But there were two difficulties to overcome of no trivial character in this plan. Wellington was not the man to be drawn into the repeated loss of his men, and the Tagus was too well guarded by our fleet and by batteries for any chance of taking him in the rear. However, Napoleon sent Massena a reinforcement, under General Drouet, who carried along with him a great supply of provisions: he assembled an army in the north of Spain, under Bessires, of seventy thousand men, and Soult moved from Cadiz, leaving Sebastiani to continue the blockade, and advanced to make the ordered junction with Massena. But he deemed it necessary, before crossing into southern Portugal, to take possession of Badajoz. In his advance, at the head of twenty thousand men, he defeated several Spanish corps, and sat down before Badajoz towards the end of February. Could Massena have maintained himself at Santarem, this junction might have been made; but, notwithstanding the provisions brought by Drouet, he found that he had no more than would serve him on a retreat into Spain. He had ten thousand of his army sick, and therefore, not waiting for Soult, he evacuated Santarem on the 5th of March, and commenced his march Spain-ward. Wellington was immediately after him, and the flight and pursuit continued for a fortnight. To prevent Massena from finding a temporary refuge in Coimbra, Wellington ordered Sir Robert Wilson and Colonel Trant to destroy an arch of the bridge over the Mondego, and thus detain him on the left bank of that river[14] till he came up. But Massena did not wait; he proceeded along a very bad road on the left bank of the river to Miranda, on the river Coira. Along this track Massena's army was sharply and repeatedly attacked by the British van under Picton, and suffered severely. Ney commanded the rear-division of the enemy, and, to check the advance of the British, he set fire to the towns and villages as he proceeded, and, escaping over the bridge on the Coira, he blew it up. But before this could be effected, Picton was upon him, accompanied by Pack's brigade and a strong body of horse, and drove numbers of the French into the river, and took much baggage. Five hundred French were left on the ground, and to facilitate their flight from Miranda, which they also burnt, they destroyed a great deal more of their baggage and ammunition. Lord Wellington was detained at the Coira, both from want of means of crossing and from want of supplies; for the French had left the country a black and burning desert. The atrocities committed by the army of Massena on this retreat were never exceeded by any host of men or devils. The soldiers seemed inspired with an infernal spirit of vengeance towards the Portuguese, and committed every horror and outrage for which language has a name. The Portuguese, on the other hand, driven to madness, pursued them like so many demons, cutting off and destroying all stragglers, and shooting down the flying files as they hurried through the woods and hills. The whole way was scattered with the carcases of the fugitives.

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      [358][21] This appears from the letters of Denonville, La Barre's successor.

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      The Government of Spain was sunk into the very deepest degradation and imbecility. Charles IV. was one of the weakest of Bourbon kings. He was ruled by his licentious wife, Maria Luiza, and she by Manuel de Godoy, a young and handsome man, who, about the year 1784, had attracted her eye as a private in the Royal Guards. By her means he was rapidly promoted, and at the age of twenty-four was already a general. He was soon created a Grandee of Spain, and the queen married him to a niece of the king. He was made Generalissimo of all the Spanish Forces, and, in fact, became the sole ruling power in the country. He was styled the Prince of the Peacea title acquired by his having effected the pacification of Basle, which terminated the Revolutionary War between France and Spain. By the subsequent Treaty of St. Ildefonso he established an offensive and defensive alliance with France, which, in truth, made Spain entirely subservient to Napoleon.321 To return to Druilletes. The smoke of the wigwam blinded him; and it is no matter of surprise to hear that he was cured by a miracle. He returned from his winter roving to Quebec in high health, and soon set forth on a new mission. On the River Kennebec, in the present State of Maine, dwelt the Abenaquis, an Algonquin people, destined hereafter to become a thorn in the sides of the New-England colonists. Some of them had visited their friends, the Christian Indians of Sillery. Here they became converted, went home, and preached the Faith to their countrymen, and this to such purpose that the Abenaquis sent to Quebec to ask for a missionary. Apart from the saving of souls, there were solid reasons for acceding to their request. The Abenaquis were near the colonies of New England,indeed, the Plymouth colony, under its charter, claimed jurisdiction over them; and in case of rupture, they would prove serviceable friends or dangerous enemies to New France. [2] Their messengers were favorably received; and Druilletes was ordered to proceed upon the new mission.

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      They paddled sixty leagues down the river in the heats of July, and killed no large game but a single deer, the meat of which soon spoiled. Their main resource was the turtles, whose shyness and watchfulness caused them frequent disappointments and many involuntary fasts. They once captured one of more than common size; and, as they were endeavoring to cut off his head, he was near avenging himself by snapping off Hennepin's finger. There was a herd of buffalo in sight on the neighboring prairie; and Du Gay went with his gun in pursuit of them, leaving the turtle in Hennepin's custody. Scarcely was he gone when the friar, raising his eyes, saw that their canoe, which they had left at the edge of the water, had floated out into the current. Hastily turning the turtle on his back, he covered him with his habit of St. Francis, on which, for greater security, he laid a number of stones, and then, being a good swimmer, struck out in pursuit of the canoe, [Pg 269] which he at length overtook. Finding that it would overset if he tried to climb into it, he pushed it before him to the shore, and then paddled towards the place, at some distance above, where he had left the turtle. He had no sooner reached it than he heard a strange sound, and beheld a long file of buffalobulls, cows, and calvesentering the water not far off, to cross to the western bank. Having no gun, as became his apostolic vocation, he shouted to Du Gay, who presently appeared, running in all haste, and they both paddled in pursuit of the game. Du Gay aimed at a young cow, and shot her in the head. She fell in shallow water near an island, where some of the herd had landed; and being unable to drag her out, they waded into the water and butchered her where she lay. It was forty-eight hours since they had tasted food. Hennepin made a fire, while Du Gay cut up the meat. They feasted so bountifully that they both fell ill, and were forced to remain two days on the island, taking doses of orvietan, before they were able to resume their journey.


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