Skip to main content

WEST OF ENGLAND MAGAZINE. No. 15. THE BATTLE OF WATERLOO. That our readers may be the better able to understand the state of affairs that imme¬ diately preceded the memora¬ ble Battle of Waterloo, we shall proceed, in the first place, to sketch the position of the two contending parties, and then to give an account of the battle itself. After that Napoleon had on the 20th March again entered Paris, and had by the unani¬ mous acclamations of the French people, for the second time taken possession of the imperial throne, he addressed letters to all the sovereigns of Europe, announcing what had occurred, and professing the most earnest desire of main¬ taining the general tranquillity; and then made a document in justification of his proceedings. Napoleon's letters were treated with contempt, and he was de¬ nounced by the Allies as a public enemy. On the 1st of June, the memorable meeting of the Champ de Mai took place when Napoleon took the oath of allegiance to the constitution to which the two Chambers subsequently subscribed. Preparations for hostilities now actively commenced. The Monday, June 18, 1832. Half-penny. strong places upon the Belgic frontier of France were, at the close of the last year, entirely occupied by English troops,or by troops in the pay of Eng¬ land, and considerable rein¬ forcements had recently arri¬ ved. Wellington was nomi¬ nated commander-in-chief, and had reached Belgium to assume that inlportant and responsible station. The Prussians, un¬ der Blucher, arrived in the neighbourhood of Namur, while intimation of the move¬ ments of the Russian and Aus¬ trian armies was received. The chief French army was at this period posted near Avesnes, in Flanders; and pre¬ parations to repel invasion had been made at Laon and the castle of Guise. Upon the 12th of June, Na¬ poleon left Paris, and pro¬ ceeded with his usual celerity to Laon; and the morning of the 15th had scarcely dawned, when the imperial eagle first pounced upou its prey. The Prussian posts upon the Sam- bre were attacked with irresis¬ tible fury. Charleroi was car¬ ried, and General Zeithen for¬ ced to retire upon Fleurus; while Marshal Ney drove back a division of the Belgian army