Immagini della pagina



desire to present the governor-general with a magnificent CHAP. star, composed of Tippoo's jewels, and the court of directors, proposed to make him a grant of one hundred thousand pounds out of the prize-money; but he refused both, lest he should interfere with the rewards due to the conquerors of Mysore.*

Little difficulty was experienced in effecting the pacific settlement of the Mysore after the death of Tippoo—the Rise and principal rajahs having hastened to make their submission Boondiah after they heard of the favourable terms offered by the conqueror to the nobles; and the judgment and firmness of Colonel Wellesley, upon whom, as governor of Mysore, the principal part of that important duty devolved, were alike conspicuous. One, however, Doondiah Waugh, a partisan of great energy and activity, was imprudently liberated during the confusion consequent on the storm of Seringapatam; and having collected a band of freebooters and disbanded soldiers from the wreck of Tippoo's army, he long maintained, with indefatigable perseverance, a desultory warfare. He first retired into the rich province of Bednore, which he plundered with merciless severity, during the paralysis of government consequent on the fall June. of the Mysore dynasty ; but Colonel Stevenson and Colonel Dalrymple having advanced against him at the


power of


should come into the possession of the Company, it is their intention to grant the whole to the army, reserving £100,000, to be afterwards granted to me. I am satisfied that, upon reflection, you will perceive that the accepting such a grant would place me in a very humiliating situation with respect to the army. And, independent of any question of my character, or of the dignity and vigour of my government, I should be miserable if I could ever feel that I had been enriched at the expense of those who must ever be the objects of my affection, admiration, and gratitude, and who are justly entitled to the exclusive possession of all that a munificent king and an admiring country can bestow. Even if the independence of my family were at stake, which I thank God it is not, I never could consent to establish it on an arrangement injurious to the conquerors of Mysore.” Mr Pitt upon this proposed to Lord Wellesley, that this magnificent grant should be settled on bim by government, and not taken from the prize-money; but this, too, his lordship declined. Such were the men, such the principles by which the British empire was raised to greatness at this period.-LORD WELLESLEY to HENRY DUNDAs, 29th April 1800Desp. ii. 262, 263.

* The prize-money for the spoil taken at Seringapatam was immense; it





. 196, 197. Scherer, i. 42, 43.


and overthrow by Colonel

CHAP. head of light bodies of cavalry and infantry, he was

worsted in several encounters, the forts which he had 1

occupied carried by assault, and himself driven, with a few ! Aug. 20.

followers, into the neutral Mahratta territory. Doondiah, however, though defeated, was not subdued. Meeting! with no very friendly reception from the Mahratta chiefs,

he again, in the succeeding year, hoisted the standard of i 2 Auber, ii. independence, and soon attracted to his colours multi

tudes of those roving adventurers who, in India, are ever ready to join any chieftain of renown who promises them impunity and plunder.

Colonel Wellesley was so fully aware of the necessity His pursuit of not permitting such a leader to accumulate a consider

able force in provinces but recently subjected to European Wellesley.

rule, and abounding with disorderly characters of every description, that, though he had recently refused the command of the projected expedition against Batavia, from a sense of the importance of his duties in Mysore, he took the field against him in person, and soon brought the con

test to a successful termination. Doondiah having entered May, 1800. the Peishwa's territories in May 1800, Wellesley imme

diately moved against him with a body of light infantry, two regiments of British, and two of native dragoons. A victory recently gained over a considerable body of Mahratta horse, had greatly elated the spirits of Doondiah and his followers; he was rapidly following in the footsteps of Hyder Ali in the formation of a dynasty; and, in the anticipation of boundless dominion, he had already assumed the title of “ King of the World.” But the hand of fate was upon him. Advancing with a celerity which exceeded the far-famed swiftness of the Indian chief, marching frequently twenty-five or thirty miles

amounted, independent of military stores, to the enormous amount of 4,558,350 star pagodas. Great complaints were made that General Harris, and the other principal officers employed, got an undue share of the amount in the distribu. tion which the king ultimately erroneously sanctioned—which would appear to be the opinion of Mr Manners Sutton and Mr Perceval, as well as Lord Castlereagh.-See Pearce's Life of Wellesley, i. 346, 347, and 339.


[ocr errors]

a-day, even under the burning sun and over the waterless CHAP. plains of India, Colonel Wellesley at length came up with the enemy, who retired at his approach. Hangal, 1800. into which he had thrown a garrison, was stormed; Dum- July 14. mul, defended by a thousand choice troops, carried by July 26. escalade ; a division of his army, four thousand strong, attacked and routed, early on the morning of the 30th July, on the banks of the Malpoorba—the whole artillery, baggage, and camels being taken; and at length intelligence was received that Doondiah himself, with five thousand horse, lay at Conaghur, about thirty miles distant from Colonel Wellesley's cavalry. The latter made a forced march to reach him before it was dark, but the jaded state of the horses rendered it impossible to get nearer than nine miles on that night. Two hours before daylight, however, on the following morning, he was again in motion, and at five o'clock met the “ King of the World,” as he was marching to the westward, without any expectation of the British being at hand. Colonel Wellesley had only the 19th and 22d dragoons, and two regiments of native horse—in all about twelve hundred men ; but with these he instantly advanced to the attack. Forming his troops into one line, so as not to be outflanked by the superior numbers of the enemy, who were quadruple his own force, and leading the charge himself, the British general resolutely bore down upon the foe. Doondiah's men were hardy veterans, skilfully drawn up in a strong position ; but they quailed before the terrible charge of 1 Sir A. the British horse, and broke ere the hostile squadrons to Col. Munwere upon them. The whole force was dispersed in the to: Sept. 11, pursuit, and Doondiah himself slain-a decisive event, Lord Wel

lesley, Aug. which at once terminated the war, and afforded no small 31, 1800.

Gur. i. 69, exultation to the English soldiers, who brought back his 72, 73. body in triumph, lashed to a galloper gun, to the camp.1

The effect of these brilliant successes soon appeared in the alliances with the Company which were sought by the Asiatic powers. The Nizam, who had obtained so

1800, and



35. Alliances with the

Oct. 12.

CHAP. large an accession of territory by the partition treaty of

Mysore, ere long found himself unequal to the task of governing his newly-acquired territories, which were filled

with warlike hordes, whom the strong arm of military Nizam and power alone could retain in subjection. He solicited, in the Rajah of Tanjore.

consequence, to be relieved of a burden which his character and resources were alike incapable of bearing. A treaty, offensive and defensive, was accordingly concluded with that potentate, soon after he had entered into occupation of his new possessions, by which the Company guaranteed the integrity of his dominions against all attacks from whatever quarter, and, to add to the security which he so ardently desired, agreed to augment the subsidiary force stationed at Hyderabad by two additional regiments of infantry and one of cavalry ; while the Nizam ceded to the British Government the whole districts which he had acquired by the treaties of Seringapatam in 1792, and Mysore in 1799, of which he had never been able to obtain more than a nominal possession. The territories thus acquired by the Company amounted to 25,950 square miles, or more than half of all England, and yielded a revenue of £450,000 yearly. The Rajah of Tanjore, anxious to shelter himself under a similar protection, entered into a treaty of the same description, and in return ceded lands, for the maintenance of his subsidiary force, amounting to 4000 square miles. The Portuguese settlement of Goa was voluntarily surrendered

by its debilitated possessors to the English authorities, 205. Mal. and the descendants of the ancient discoverers and con

querors of India acknowledged the rising supremacy of Wel. Desp; the Anglo-Saxon race. Shortly after (October 30), a ii. 580, 582.

treaty of commerce and friendship was concluded with i. 371, 374. the Rajah of Nepaul, and the English influence extended

to the foot of the Himalaya snows."

Amicable relations were at the same time established with the Imaum of Muscat—a powerful chief, having a considerable naval force and vast maritime coast in the

Oct. 25.


colm, ii. 283, 284.



the Imaum

and the

Persian Gulf and on the shores of Arabia—and the King CHAP. of Persia, which terminated in the conclusion of a most

1801. important treaty, both commercial and political, with the court of Ispahan. By it valuable privileges were secured and with to British trade in the interior of Asia, and a barrier was of Muscat, provided against the only powers which, at that period, King of were thought to threaten the provinces of Hindostan. Persia;

Jan. 12, It was agreed that, in the event of any inroad being 1801. threatened by the Affghauns, or any hostile measures attempted by France, Persia should make common cause with England in arresting the invader. No stipulations were deemed necessary against Russia, though all history told that it was from that quarter that all the serious invasions of India had emanated, and although shortly before a treaty had been concluded between Napoleon and the Emperor Paul for the transport of a force of thirty-five thousand French and fifty thousand Russian troops from the banks of the Rhine and of the Wolga to 1 Aute, chap. those of the Indus. So short-sighted are the views even xxxiii

. sol. of the ablest statesmen and diplomatists, when, carried 205, Malaway by the pressing, and perhaps accidental, dangers of 4, 317. App. the moment, they overlook the durable causes which, in ii. 580, 581. every age, elevate and direct the waves of conquest. 1

Delivered from all domestic dangers by these prosperous events, Lord Wellesley was enabled to direct the now Expedition colossal strength of the Indian empire to foreign objects. D. Baird, Such was the extent of resources at the disposal of to Egypt.

. government, that, without weakening, in any considerable March 1801. degree, the force at any of the presidencies, he was enabled to fit out an expedition at Bombay, consisting of seven thousand men, to take part in the great concerted attack by the British government upon the French in Egypt. Sir D. Baird, as a just though tardy reward for his heroic conduct at Seringapatam, received the command, and sailed from Bombay on the 30th March. Colonel Wellesley had been appointed second in command, and though disappointed at not receiving the chief place, he yet looked

6l. Auber, ii.

, 283

534. Desp.


from India

« IndietroContinua »