ESILMAN'S LIFE OF SIR HENRY FLINTLOCK..
Tim poet's reflection that " great men have been among us" must not be so understood, as to exclude the belief that heroism is an actual possession as well as an ideal inheritance. The background. of the entire past, indeed, is lighted up with splen- dours of valour and intellect, and art, such as no single epoch can emulate. But the present age, too, has its own unborrowed light ; its own peculiar share of a common glory that illumi- initiates all time ; its native claims on the admiration of succeed- ing years ; its appropriate portion of romantic event and heroic circumstance. In our own immediate day, and not only in the days of the Vanes, Hampdens, Pyms, and other " invincible knights" of the Commonwealth, whom Wordsworth. celebrates, " great men have been among us."
Of these great men, one was Henry Havelock, a man cast in the same mould as the heroes of the English Revolution ; or, to use the eloquent words of Count Montalembert, " a personage of an antique grandeur, resembling in their most beautiful and irreproachable aspects, the great Puritans of the seventeenth cen- tury." The memorial of his worth, with which Mr. Marshman has furnished us, will be found no inadequate record of the virtues and achievments of one who combined a high moral cou- rage with a great military genius. Written without any affecta- tion in style or sentiment, the narrative is, in our opinion, inte- resting throughout. Pretending to little more than common literary ability, and assuming no artistic airs, the biographer has much of the eloquence which belongs to sincere and necessary statement, rising unconsciously into unadorned poetry, from the Dantesque exhibition which he gives of striking characteristic realities. We propose to cite at least one instance of this plain rhetoric, while tracing, with our author's aid, the lineaments in the portrait of his admired hero. Henry Havelock, he tells us, was born at Bishopwearmouth, in Sunderland, on the 5th of April, 1795. Bearing the name of the chief who held sway in the eastern counties before the perhaps mythical arrival of Hengist and Horse, and who is the theme of one of the oldest lays in England; traditionally deriving his origin from Guthrum ; and not perhaps erroneously identified as the descendant of Haflok, " the lost child of a Norse sea-king," the subject of this memoir may be presumably referred to a family of Danish lineage. His great-grandfather was one of the victims of the South Sea Babble. His grandfather, settling in Sunderland, engaged largely in the commerce of that rising town. His father, William Havelock, following the profession of ship-builder, amassed a considerable fortune ; and, migrating to the South, pur- chased Ingress Park, near Dartford, where his sons Thomas and Charles were born. Previously to this migration, two other sons, William and Henry, had anticipated them. Their mother, Miss Jane Carter, was a daughter of a solicitor of Stockton-on-Tees. All the four brothers adopted a soldier's career. Placed with his elder brother under the tuition of the Reverend J. Bradley, curate of Swanscombe, Henry Havelock remained for five years at that clergyman's seminary. A Lilliputian, politician, he read with avidity the newspapers, taking the strongest interest in the record of Napoleon's movements. Under the instructions of his mother, with whom he constantly studied the Bible, he re- ceived those religious impressions which "continued to be his support and solace through life." During even this early period, the boy showed himself father of the man. On one occasion. he had climbed up a tree to obtain a bird's nest, when the branch broke and he was thrown violently to the ground. " Were you not frightened?" he was asked. "No," replied he, " I had too much to think of to feel frightened. I was thinking of the bird's nest I had lost."
Before Henry Havelock had attained the age of ten, the two brothers were removed to the Charter House. Henry continued there for seven years ; till under Dr. Raine's presidency, he had become an accomplished Greek and Latin scholar. Here, too, his character strengthened as he grew. He bore the ridicule with which his practical piety was assailed, unflinchingly. His sober and reflective disposition procured him among his companions the sobriquet of Philosopher, abbreviated into Phlos. Of the dis- cipline and character of the school, Henry Havelock ever enter- tamed a high opinion. His intimate friends there were Samuel Hinds, William Norris, and Julius Charles Hare. Nearly con- temporary with him at the school were other distinguished. men, Connop Thirlwall,. Waddington, " George Grote, the historian of Greece," Sir William Macnaghten, Lord Panmure ; " Eastlake the painter, and Yates the actor." On " leaving the Charter House, he retired to Ingress Park, where he remained till the summer of 1812, giving his time to the study of the classics and the acquisition of general knowledge." The embarrassments in which his father was involved, at length necessitated the sale of the estate, and the family removed to Clifton. Henry had now attained his eighteenth year ; and, in obedience to the expressed wishes of his mother, determined to go I to the bar. In 1813, he was " entered of the Middle Temple, and became a pupil of Chitty, the most eminent special pleader of the day." The author of Ion was the companion of his studies. The two friends, however, seem to have preferred the beauties of poetry to the pleas of court. " It was from Talfourd that Have- lock imbibed that love of the Lake school which he never lost."
* Memoirs of Major-Oeneral Sir Henry Haretook, I.c 8. $y John Clark Marshman. Published by Longman and Co. An unfortunate misunderstanding with his father obliged the young student to relinquish the pursuit of the law. By the ad- vice of his brother William, a Peninsular officer, he now decided. on the profession of arms. A commission was accordingly ob- tained for him by Baron. Charles Alten, and Henry Havelock at the age of twenty became a soldier. During the next eight years, " while others were enjoying the lazy leisure of the barrack, he was diligently employed in the study of Vauban and Lloyd, and Templeboff and Jomini." _ In his 28th year, Lieutenant Havelock embarked for India, January 1823. His biographer describes him as "diminutive in stature but well built, with a noble expanse of forehead, an eagle eye, a countenance remarkably comely which exhibited that union of intellect and energy which never fails to command deference." Havelock's theological studies and linguistic employments during the voyage ; his inauguration of Christian worship in the Shoe- Dagon pagoda ; his eampaign in Burmah, his marriage to Han- nah Shepherd, the daughter of the Reverend Dr. Marsham ; his association with the Baptist community ; are all related, with more or less detail in the opening chapter of these memorials. Early in his career, Havelock was noticeable for his piety and his influence over his soldiers ; distinguished as the author of the " Campaigns in Ava," a work which, however, made him many enemies ; and by his military service. Selected by Sir Archibald. Campbell to proceed to Ave and receive the ratification of the treaty, which ceded three provinces, he was there invested with the title of a Burmese noble. With the fillet of gold leaf on his brow for his sole reward, he returned to his duty, as a Lieutenant of H. M. 13th Foot. For about twenty-three years in all, ha re- mained a subaltern. "At length, the long coveted grade of Cap- tain came to the neglected Lieutenant, at the age of forty-three, without purchase." This was in the year 1838. The Affghan war was now at hand; a war which our author pronounces to have begun in injustice, as it ended in the most signal disaster. It was the period of the siege of Herat, so gal- lantly defended by Eldred Pottinger; of the deposition of Boat Mahomed, and the restoration of Shah Soojah to the throne of his ancestors ; of the march from Candahar ; of the capture of Gus- nee ; of the assassination of Sir William Macnaghten ; of the in- surrection at Cabal; of the defence of Jellalabad ; of the defeat of Akbar Khan under Sir Robert Sale, and the victory of Istaliff, in reality due to Havelock, though, on the " sic vos non vobis" principle, the merit was "necessarily ascribed to General M'Cas- kill." On the restablishment of British reputation in Affghanis- tan, the army was broken up, and Havelock's four years' con- nexion with the invaded districts terminated. To Broadfoot, Macgregor, Lawrence, men of eminent desert, the closing of the campaign brought valuable appointments ; to Havelock, it brought Ionly fresh vexation and loss. Prejudices seem to have been en- tertained against him, owing, as he conjectures, to his religious principles. He had been told that Lord Hill and sundry other wise persons had made up their minds that no man could be at once a saint and a soldier. Yet, as he intimates, Colonel Gar- diner, Cromwell, and Gustavus, were examples to the contrary; and we have Sir Archibald Campbell's testimony in favour of Havelock's saints :—" They are always sober, and can be depended on, and Havelock himself is always ready." It was not, however, till the forty-eighth year of his age, and the twenty-eighth of his service, that Havelock obtained his regi- mental majority. After a few months' repose, he was again in- volved in the excitement of active service. The Gwalior cam- paign was succeeded by the Sikh war. Runjeet Sing's army, organized by French officers of enterprise and genius, such as Allard, Court, Ventura, Avitabile, had become "the most effi- cient body of troops which had ever served under any native prince." The prestige of British power had been lost in the mountains of Affghanistan, and the Khalsa army, as it was called, " was eager to try conclusions with us in the field." At last, it crossed the Sutlege, and stood on British territory. Then followed. the four great baitles of Moodkee, Ferozeshuhur, Aliwal, and Sobraon, which, in the space of fifty-five days, broke the power of this formidable army, and placed the Punjab at our disposal. In three of these battles, Havelock fought side by side with his chief; in that of Moodiree he had. two horses shot under him. It was in this engagement, too, that he lost his friend, Major Broad- foot, distinguished alike for diplomatic and military genius ; and whom Havelock always considered "the foremost man of his age, both as a soldier and as a statesman." Nominated to the post of Deputy-Adjutant-General of Queen's troops at Bombay, Havelock soon assumed the duties of his office. These duties he dis- charged for three years, with laudable promptitude and punctu- alite Second Sikh war broke out in 1848. The sanguinary and unsatisfactory battle of Chillianwallah was happily followed by the decisive victory of Goojerat. Meanwhile, Havelock ever pre- pared to enter on active service, had temporarily relinquished his staff appointment, and actually started for the Punjab, with the permission of Sir Willoughby Cotton, when an official letter from head-quarters, containing one reprimand for himself, and another for his chief, peremptorily ordered him back to Bombay. In Sep- tember of the same year (1849), a dangerous illness compelled him "to strike work," and return to England ; whither Mrs. Havelock, and her family, had proceeded in the month of April. Havelock's impressions of his own country, and of some parts of the continent which he visited, his reminiscences of distinguished. men, and dear and valued friends, occupy some agreeable
pages in the fifth chapter of the " Memorials." In December 1851, he returned, with improved health, to Bombay. Somewhat more than two years after, he was appointed, at Lord Hardmge s nomination, to the office of Quartermaster-General of the Queen's troops in India, with a salary of nearly 30001. a year. On his way to Simla, the London Gazette announced the brevet which brought him on the roll of full colonels. A few months more elapsed, and he succeeded Markham in the post of Adjutant- General.
In the beginning of the year 1857, when Havelock had num- bered about sixty-two summers, he was for the first time placed in a position which afforded scope for his great military talents. The war in Affghanistan in 1838, (of which Havelock had written a narrative) grew primarily out of our differences with the Court of Persia. " In 1852," says Mr. Marshman, " a Persian army was despatched against Herat, and the town and province were subju- gated and annexed by proclamation to the Persian dominions."
In 1853, however, the dread of hostilities with England induced the Shah to relinquish his hold on Herat. This statement has we are aware been impeached, but we find it affirmed in the West- minster Review, January 1857, that Persian troops were actually
in possession of that fortress, and that " the Government formally proclaimed in its gazette that Herat had been annexed to the Persian Crown." Leaving the determination of this disputed point to others, we come to the infringement of the Treaty of 1853, and the hostile occupation of Herat by the King of Persia, which resulted in the Governor General's declaration of war, on the 1st of November 1856. In the expeditionary force, over which General Sir James Outram presided, Colonel Havelock was en- trusted, through that officer's recommendation, with the command of a division. He was present at the attack on Mohumrah, when the victory was won by the Indian navy. In this and the two companion actions of Khoosab and Ahwaz, the Persians fled in dismay at the sight of a British force. On the 4th of March, a treaty of peace was signed with the Persian ambassador at Paris, and on the 5th of April Sir James Outram announced to Colonel Havelock " that their labours in the field were at an end."
A tragical epoch was approaching; a hundred years had elapsed since the sack of Calcutta and the battle of Plassy, since the establishment in India of British empire, and in Asia of Euro- pean supremacy ; when the revolt of an army of a hundred thou- sand men, suddenly shook, like a moral earthquake, the rule of England lo its very foundations. Mr. Marshman maintains that the mutiny was simply a revolt of the army against the consti- tuted authorities ; and that, if there had been no military rising, there would have been no appearance of any social insurrection. The immediate cause of that revolt, he continues, was the greased cartridges ; the predisposing causes were the various influences,— such as undue indulgence, ill-advised concession, paucity of Eu- ropean troops—which encouraged the Sepoy army, now twenty years in a state of chronic mutiny, to attempt the realization of the ambitious dream of the conquest of India for themselves. General causes of alienation, springing out of the natural antipa- thies of the conquered and conquering races, our author indeed admits ; but, in his opinion, none of these causes were adequate to the creation of an insurrection, though they doubtless increased our difficulties when it did break out. Under British rule, a prosperity unknown for eight centuries, had been enjoyed in India, when the revolt took place ; and, With the exception of the King of Delhi, all the great native princes remained faithful to na " and their own interests. Such is briefly Mr. Marshman's judgment on this terrific explosion. We will now return to the hero of his narrative.
On the 27th of June, 1857, was perpetrated the atrocious and treacherous massacre of Cawnpore. On the night of the 5th, Ffaveloek embarked in the Erin steamer at Bombay. The vessel was wrecked, but the great soldier and his comrades survived. On the 13th of June, Havelock arrived at Madras. On the 7th of July, he marched from Allahabad to the recapture of Cawn- pore, with no more than 1400 European bayonets under his com- mand. On the 12th, " after our men had been marching and under arms for nine hours," Havelock fought and won the battle of Cawnpore—a victory which he ascribes, in the manner of a Cromwell, to the fire of British artillery, the power of the Enfield rifle in British hands, to British pluck, and to " the blessing of Almighty God on a most righteous cause, the cause of justice, humanity, truth, and good government in India." Passing over the action at Aong and the engagement of the Pandoo Nuddee, we see General Havelock's troops fall into their ranks on the morning of the 16th; we see " 1000 British soldiers and 300 Sikhs fighting under a deadly sun, with the aid of only 18 horse, against a superior artillery and numerous cavalry" ; and, finally, we see them drive from " a position, skilfully selected and strongly entrenched, a body of 5000 Native troops, trained and diiiciplined by our own officers." On the following day, our sol- diers entered. Cawnpore. A third massacre had preceded them. They came too late. They passed to the building where the women and -children had been confined;' they found the apart- ittents empty and silent :—
" The blood lay deep on the floor covered with bonnets, collars, combs, and children's frocks and frills. The walls were dotted with the marks of bullets, and on the wooden pillars were deep sword-cuts, from some of which hung tresses of hair. But neither the sabre cuts nor the dents of the bullets were sufficiently high above the floor to indicate that the weapons had been aimed at men defending their lives ; they appeared rather to have been levelled at crouching women and children, begging for mercy. The soldiers proceeded with their search, when in crossing the courtyard they
Iperceived human limbs bristling from a well. . . . Hen of iron nerve, who during the march from Allahabad, had rushed to the cannon's mouth without flinching, and bad seen unappalled their comrades mowed down around them, now 'lifted up their voices and wept!' "
Leaving Cawnpore, Havelock prepared to march for Lucknow. We cannot follow him in his series of fresh victories. It began with that of Onao, where fifteen guns were captured, and ended with that of Bithoor, with its chorus of enthusiastic voices and the generous response, " Don't cheer me, my men, you did it all, yourselves."
On returning from BithoOr, General Havelock found himself superseded. Sir James Outram had been appointed, from no hostility to Havelock, to the command of the Dinapore and Cawnpore divisions. With a magnanimous self-denial, which recalls the chivalrous spirit of the Good Lord Jameii, his greater namesake, in gratitude for and admiration of the brilliant deeds in arms achieved by General Havelock and his gallant troops, declared that he would " cheerfully waive his rank, and would accompany the force to Lucknow in his civil capacity as Chief Commissioner of Oude, tendering his military services to General Havelock as a volunteer" ; a deed of noble disinterestedness which history will never let die.
The third attempt to relieve Luck-now proved successful. The action of Mungulwar was succeeded by that of Alumbagh. Then came the advance over the Charbagh Bridge under a deadly fire ; the triumph ; the welcome ; the rush of the gallant Highlanders, "who had fought twelve battles to enjoy that moment of ecstasy," when the ladies in the garrison and their children crowded with intense excitement into the porch to see their deliverers. This was the last of Havelock's victories. His glorious career was soon to close. Privation, fatigue, exposure, and unremitting effort had weakened his physical powers. We catch a glimpse of him i " seated alone in his chamber reading Macaulay's history by lamp- light, on the evening of the 19th of November' ; another, when, on the afternoon of the 23d, his generous companions in arms, Sir James Outram, heard him say, " I have for forty years so ruled my life, that when death came I might face it without fear : " dud on the 24th morning of November, 1857; we see the dead face of the noble chief that beat the enemy in nine fields, in five weeks ; that gave the first check to the mutiny, and turned the tide of events in our favour."
A nation mourned over his grave.