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A. D. 1782.
STORM AND FAMINE AT MADRAS.
reputation, not merely for talent, but for honour | tillery, and when he thought he had made a breach, and integrity, and who therefore had a character he urged his cavalry on to the attack, with proto lose, a person hardly to be found among the mises, threats, and blows. But in vain, they were servants of the Company. Lord Macartney, who repelled with showers of grape and musketry, and had acquired reputation by negotiating a commer- then the British cavalry issued forth, pursued, and cial treaty with Russia, was the person selected, cut them down. At length Lally, supported by and he had arrived at Madras on the 22nd June. large masses of horse and foot, led his Europeans
As England was now at war with the Dutch on with fixed bayonets. At this sight the nerve of also, Lord Macartney had been directed to reduce the Sepoys failed, and they fell into confusion. The their settlements. Sadras yielded when summoned; barbarians rushed in on them, and would have and the governor, putting himself at the head of massacred them, but for the exertions of Lally, the militia of Madras, advanced against Pulicat, who even slew some of the assailants with his own which also surrendered, on condition of security to hand. It is but justice to Tippoo, to add, that he private property. He then tried to induce the treated the survivors with humanity. Mill justly general to attack Negapatam; but he positively re- observes, that “the annals of war can seldom exfused, and pronounced that any such attempt would hibit a parallel to the firmness and perseverance prove a lamentable failure. Lord Macartney thought of this little army; and we must remember that it differently; and having induced Sir Hector Munro was almost wholly composed of Sepoys. to take the command of such troops as he could Both France and England had sent out fleets collect, without asking any from the general, on and troops to India. That of the former was comthe 21st October, marines and seamen having been manded by M. Suffrein, one of the ablest naval landed from the fleet to aid, the siege was com- officers that France has ever possessed; and Bussy menced. On the 12th November the place capitu- was to take the command of the land forces. The lated. The number of the troops which surren- English fleet joined that of Sir Edward Hughes ; dered, 655), was far greater than that of the the troops on board were commanded by Gen. besieging army. The quantity of goods and mili- Medows. On the 17th February the two fleets tary stores taken was considerable. The success fought in the usual indecisive manner, and as the of this undertaking augmented the old general's English retired to Trincomalee, in Ceylon, Suffrein pettishness. He found fault with every thing; and landed 2000 French and 1006 Caffre soldiers at even wrote to Bengal to say, that if not made quite Porto Novo, where they were joined by Tippoo, independent he would resign. Lord Macartney, and on the 3rd April they captured Cuddalore and on the other hand, aware of the evils of dissension, Permacoil. They then advanced to Wandewash, and of the value of Coote's name, did all he could but on the approach of Coote they withdrew to to keep him in good humour. “I court him like Pondicherry. Coote then moved toward Arnee, a mistress,” said he, “and humour him like a which the Killidâr had engaged to surrender ; but child.”
the presence of Hyder deterred him from performOn the 2nd January, 1782, the general put him. ing his promise. Hyder made an attack on the self at the head of his army to convey provisions British army, but was repulsed with loss. Some to Vellore, which could not hold out beyond the days after a regiment of European cavalry, which' 11th, if not relieved. On the 5th he had a violent Coote named his grand guard, was drawn into an apoplectic fit, but next day he was able to proceed; ambuscade, and the whole of it killed or made and having relieved the fort in spite of Hyder, he prisoners. The army then being sickly, was led led his army safely back to Madras.
back to Madras (June 20). During these events in the Carnatic, Tellicherry A plan for a combined attack on Negapatam was besieged, first by the Nairs of the coast, and had been arranged between Hyder and the French then by one of Hyder's generals. It was ably admiral. But as the latter was proceeding thither, defended by Major Abingdon, and at length, having he was descried by the English admiral, and a received a reinforcement from Bombay, this gal- close and warm action ensued (July 4); change in lant officer made a sally on the night of the 7th the wind deprived the English of a glorious vicJanuary, entered the camp of the enemy, who fled tory, and the fleets separated. Suffrein having in the utmost confusion, and made their leader a repaired his ships with great rapidity, put again to prisoner. He now restored the various chiefs sea, while Hughes, though urged by the government whom Hyder had driven away, and (Feb. 12) re- of Madras, remained inactive till the 20th August. duced the city of Calicut. On the 18th Col. Hum- He then sailed for Trincomalee, but found the berston, lately come from England, landed with French colours flying on it. The day after his about 1000 men, and taking the command, invaded arrival (September 3) he engaged the French Hyder's territories.
feet, and the action, one of the hardest ever fought, The very day that Col. Humberston landed, a was terminated by the night. Hughes then redisaster, to be compared with that of Baillie, befel turned to Madras. the English division, under Col. Braithwaite, in The admiral was now requested to join in an Tanjore. This officer was encamped on the banks attack on Cuddalore; but he gave a point blank of the Colaroon, with a force of 100 Europeans, refusal, and moreover declared his intention of and 1500 foot, and 300 native horse. Here he proceeding to Bombay, and thus leaving the coast was suddenly surrounded by Tippoo, with 20,000 unprotected. Remonstrance availed not with him, horse, 20,000 foot, and Lally’s corps of Europeans, and he set sail on the 15th October, as the sky with twenty pieces of cannon. On the 16th the menaced a storm. The tempest came, and next attacks began, and were continued till the 18th. day the beach at Madras was strewn with the Braithwaite formed his men into a hollow square, wrecks of shipping, among which were several with the artillery in the face, and the cavalry in laden with rice, to which the inhabitants looked the centre. Tippoo kept up a constant fire of ar- for their sole support. The town was surcharged with population, such numbers of the people of the dalore. It was a great object with the governor to country had sought refuge in it from the ravages reduce that place before the return of Tippoo and of Hyder. Famine now appeared in all its horrors, the French troops who were with him ; but it and the number of deaths were from 1200 to proved impossible to get the general to move 1500 a week, though pestilerce had not yet ap- before the 21st April, and he spent forty days in peared. At length supplies began to arrive from traversing the 100 miles between Madras and Bengal and the Circars; for fortunately the French Cuddalore. On the 13th June, he made an attack were not aware of the condition of Madras.
on the works thrown up there, and carried them, Sir Eyre Coote at this time sailed to Bengal, though with much loss, and the French retired and the chief command remained with Gen. into the town. Next day, the two hostile fleets Stuart.
arrived. Suffrein here took on board 1200 men ; In the month of December an event occurred and on the 20th, the fleets engaged with the usual which seemed likely to have a considerable effect success-hard fighting, and no ultimate advantage on the British interests in India,—the formidable on either side. The English then having returned Hyder Ally breathed his last at Chittore, having to Madras, Suffrein re-landed the 1200 with 2400 it is said, reached an age beyond eighty years of his own men, and preparations were made for As it was of the utmost importance to conceal that a vigorous attack on the besieging army. On the event till the return of Tippoo, who was acting 25th, Bussy made a sortie with his best troops ; against the English on the west coast, the body but was repulsed with loss. He was preparing was placed in a chest filled with spices, and sent for a grand effort on the 4th July; but meantime away as if it had been treasure. The business of intelligence came of the signing of peace between state went on as usual : it was given out that France and England, and he cheerfully agreed to Hyder, though weak, was recovering, and as the a cessation of arms, and engaged to send orders to army moved toward Mysore no one was allowed to the French in Tippoo's service to retire from it approach the palankeen in which he was supposed immediately. to be lying. At length Tippoo arrived and as- General Stuart was now summoned to Madras, sumed the sovereignty.
to answer for his contumacy and disobedience. Lord Macartney, aware of the confusion which After some delay, he proceeded thither. The takes place in an Eastern army on the death of its usual disputes ensued; but the governor and chief, was anxious to take advantage of that of council finally resolved to dismiss him the service. Hyder to strike some important blow. But Gen. He, however, declared that he would retain the Stuart presumed to judge and act for himself, re- command of the king's troops ; and Sir John Burfused to obey orders, and thus let the occasion goyne, the second in command, declared that he slip. We have often seen how injurious were the would continue to obey his orders. Decision was claims of independent authority set up by the now necessary ; the general was arrested at his king's officers serving in India. The independent country house, and brought to the fort, and a few power which Hastings found it necessary to be- days after he was embarked for England. It will stow on Sir Eyre Coote had been useful while be recollected that he was the man who so treachMadras was in the hands of a set of usurers, but erously had arrested Lord Pigot. proved hurtful in the case of a man of honour like Operations were in the meantime going on, on Lord Macartney; and this nobleman, though he | the west coast. Col. Humberston, who had made thought it expedient to manage Coote, would not an inroad into the country southwards of Calient, submit to the assumptions of Stuart, and he found had been obliged to retire with loss before Tipmeans to reduce him to obedience. In the begin. poo to Paniani, at the mouth of a river of that ning of the next year (1783) this officer at length
Col. Macleod came thither from Madras took the field, and on the 13th February he offered and took the command, and Sir Edward Hughes Tippoo battle near Wandewash, which he declined when passing landed 450 of his men. An assault and retired. The general then, in compliance on their lines by a part of Tippoo's troops led by with the wishes of the governor, executed the Lally having been repelled, that prince was premost injudicious measure of blowing up the fortifi- paring to make another attempt, when the news cations of that place and of Carangoly, and then arrived of his father's death. He drew off his army, marched for Arcot, where he learned that Tippoo and as soon as he was gone the Sepoys marched by had left the Carnatic, having ordered Arcot to be land to Tellicherry, while the Europeans went by evacuated and part of its works destroyed. sea to Merjee, higher up on the coast. In January,
Sir Eyre Coote was returning once more to the Gen. Matthews came from Bombay with more Carnatic, the scene of his glory. The ship he was troops, and taking the command, reduced Onore on board of being chased for two days and nights, and some other forts. He then moved to the pass he stayed almost constantly on deck, exposed to named Hussan Gurry Ghât, and though it was the heat of the sun and the damp of the night. five miles long and the winding road defended by This, joined with mental anxiety, was too much batteries at every turning, the troops carried every for his enfeebled frame ; and he expired (April thing at the point of the bayonet, and reached the 26), two days after reaching Madras. His character as an officer stood high, and he had gained 2 It was on this occasion that Bernadotte, afterwards a greater victories than any European commander
marshal and king of Sweden, then a mere sergeant, was yet had done in India.
wounded and made a prisoner. Col. Wangenheim, who Bussy had now arrived with reinforcements
commanded the Hanoverian troops, struck with his appear
ance, had him taken to his own tent, and properly attended from the Islands, and taken the command at Cud
to till his recovery. Many years after, when Bernadotte
commanded the French army in Hanover, and Wangenheim 1 Yet he was only twenty-seven, it would appear, in 1749. attended his levée, he reminded him of his kindness, and See above, p. 95.
expressed his gratitude.
A. D. 1783–1784.
PEACE WITH TIPPOO.
summit. They then marched for Bednore, which tain," said that good man,“ that you quit all before
each of their tents, and they learned that Gen.
CHAPTER XVIII. from Bombay or Madras; and at length (Jan. 30, 1784) they capitulated, being allowed to march to Treatment of Cheit Sing--Treaty of Chunar-Treatment of Telicherry with all the honours of war.
the Begums-Of Fyzoola Khân-The Nabob of Arcotlant Campbell breathed his last on the 23rd of the
The residency of Oude — Departure of Hastings - Sucfollowing March.
ceeded by Mr. Macpherson. While Tippoo was engaged in the siege of Man
The unjust and expensive wars into which the galore, Col. Fullarton was acting against the southern part of his dominions, and he had reduced presidencies of Madras and Bombay had plunged, Dindigul and other forts. On the 2nd June he ings, but gave him an opportunity of displaying
caused great labour and uneasiness to Mr. Hasthad captured Darapôram, and was advancing into Mysore, when orders from Gen. Stuart recalled
mental powers of a high order, and the utmost him. He employed himself in regulating Madura
zeal for the interests of the Company. The manner
in which he succeeded in preventing the Nizâm and Tinivelly till August, when, being reinforced, and the Marattas from uniting with Hyder Ally, he moved towards Mysore. About the middle of
exhibits him as the able diplomatist ; and the way October, hearing of the violation of the armistice
in which he supported those presidencies, proves at Mangalore by Tippoo, he resolved to make a
his abilities as a statesman. We are now to conpush for Seringapatam. With this view he reduced the fort of Palacatchery, after which that of sider some of the means he adopted in order to Coimbatore surrendered. The road to Seringa
obtain the funds necessary for the great military
efforts he was obliged to make.
We have seen that, in 1774, Cheit Sing, the
rajah or zemindar of Benares became immediMadras army was acting in Cudipah, the Hindoo
ately subject to the Company. A fixed tribute population was disaffected, and it was proposed to
was agreed on, which, he was assured, as long as set up the deposed rajah. Every thing seemed to
he paid regularly, no other demands of any kind promise success, when (Nov. 28) Fullarton re
should be made on him. This tribute he had paid ceived orders from the commissioners sent to treat with Tippoo to restore all the places lately reduced, regularly up to 1778; when Mr. Hastings, who and retire within the limits occupied on the 26th
was now supreme in the council, and who, there is
reason to think, had a spleen against him, proJuly. He at first hesitated to obey; but on receiving orders to the same effect from Madras, he
4 See the note in Thornton, ii. 286. complied with them. On his march he met the missionary Schwartz. “ And is the peace so cer
5 “ It is a fact,” said Hastings, "that when the unhappy divisions of our government had proceeded to an extremity,
bordering on civil violence, by the attempt to wrest from 3 Tippoo justified this breach of the law of nations, by me my authority, in June, 1777 (see above, p. 107], he had asserting that they had robbed the public treasure, and it is deputed a man named Sumboonaut, with an express comtrue that it was distributed among them, after the capitula- mission to my opponent, and the man had proceeded as tion had been determined on.
far as Mourshedabâd, when, hearing of the change of affairs,
posed that he should be called on to pay five lacs and, strange to say, they had been sent without a year for the support of three battalions of Sepoys ammunition. They were stationed in the square during the war. He yielded, however, to Francis of the rajah's house; where they were soon surso far as to agree that that sum should be asked of rounded by bodies of armed men. When this was the rajah as an aid. After some attempt to get an known, orders were sent to another company to abatement, Cheit Sing consented; but he expressly come and bring them ammunition. But on their declared that it was only for a single year. He arrival they found all the avenues blocked up, and asked also for time, pleading poverty; but the saw no means of relieving their companions, who governor was inexorable, and only five days were were speedily destroyed by the assailants. Had given. The next year the demand was renewed. Cheit Sing been a man of sense and spirit, he He appealed to the treaty 6 ; but troops were would now have put himself at their head, and marched against him, and he was obliged to pay, gone to Hastings' quarters, where he might easily the expenses of the troops included. In 1780 he have seized him as a hostage for his safety. But was called on again, and he sent an agent to Cal- he made his escape by a back wicket, and letting cutta to try to obtain a remission, and bearing a himself down the bank of the river by turbans present of two lacs to the governor, who took the tied together, escaped to the other side, whither money, intending, as he said, to apply it to the the multitude followed him, leaving the palace to public service 7. As he did not, however, express
the English. this intention, it was natural for the agent to sup- Every effort was now made to assemble troops pose that he meant to do what was expected from for the protection of the Governor-general; and as him. The contribution, however, was exacted, and soon as a sufficient number had arrived, it was in addition one lac more by way of fine. This resolved to make an attempt on Ramnaghur, a was still not deemed sufficient; and in 1781 he was fortified palace of the rajah's, on the opposite side called upon, beside paying his tribute and the five of the river. But without waiting for Major Poplacs, to furnish a body of 2000 cavalry. This de- ham who was to command, or for the effects of a mand was reduced to 1000, and he prepared that cannonade, Capt. Mayaffre led the troops against number, half horse, half matchlock-men. But this it through the narrow streets of the town, and would not content the governor: “ I was resolved," himself and many of his men having fallen, the says he, “ to draw from his guilt the means of re- troops were forced to retire. As disaffection was lief to the Company's distresses. In a word, I had now spreading on all sides, Hastings not considerdetermined to make him pay largely for his par- ing himself safe at Benares, made his escape by don, or to exact a severe vengeance for his past night to the strong fortress of Chunar. Cheit Sing delinquency.” In a word Mr. Hastings was re- now by letters, and by the mediation of influential solved to imitate the Oriental despotisms in one persons, did all in his power to obtain peace; but of their worst features, use the right of the Hastings would not even give him a reply. Hopestronger, and when he wanted money, take it by less of pardon, he then assembled all the troops he force from whoever possessed it. As to the rajah’s could, and resolved on the appeal to arms. But guilt, what was it if not the desire to escape from his fortress of Pateeta was stormed by Major being fleeced?
Popham, the pass of Siekroot was carried by Major The rajah, being terrified, offered twenty lacs of Crabbe, and he fled for safety to the fort of rupees, but Mr. Hastings insisted on fifty, and Bidjeghur, where a great part of his treasure lay, even was in treaty for the sale of his territories to being followed by Major Popham. Mr. Hastings the Nabob of Oude, after he should have seized returned to Benares, where he issued a proclamahis treasures. As a preliminary to his further tion offering pardon to all but Cheit Sing and his proceedings, he removed Mr. Fowke from Be- brother. A grandson of Bulwunt Sing by one of nâres, and sent thither in his place one of his own his daughters was made rajah; and as he was only adherents, Mr. Markham, son of the Archbishop eighteen, his father was appointed his Naib. The of York ; he then set out for that place in person. tribute was raised to forty lacs; and the police, and The rajah met him at Buxar, was very submissive, civil, and criminal jurisdiction were taken from and even went so far as to place his turban in his the rajah. lap; an act regarded as very significant of sin- Cheit Sing fled from Bidjeghur with his treasure cerity. Hastings, however, dismissed him, and to Bundelcund, leaving his mother, his wife, and went on to Benares, which he reached on the 14th other females in the fort. They offered to surAugust. He then wrote to the rajah; and his render on being secured in their persons and proanswer not proving satisfactory, he gave orders to perty. To these terms Hastings would not listen; Mr. Markham to arrest him, and he was accord- and it was finally agreed that they should give up ingly placed under a guard in his own house. the fort on condition of being allowed to depart This guard consisted of two companies of Sepoys, without being searched. But even this condition
was violated by the captors; and female searchers he stopped, and the rajah recalled him." They know little were appointed to examine them as they issued, of Hastings, who fancy he would forgive this conduct. and see that they carried away nothing of value.
6 “There was no treaty," says Wilson, who goes on to The fort, we may observe, was not taken by say that a sunnud (what he had) is only a grant, or patent, assault; and it may therefore appear surprising from a superior, and that there was no pledge that it should that, as was the case, the captors seized and not be altered. What then, we may ask, was the use of it?
divided among themselves the whole of the booty. But surely the honour of the Council was pledged.
But here we have another specimen of Hastings' 7 There is great ambiguity about this money, which was applied to the support of Carnac's division, apparently, as if inexplicable conduct. In his reply to Popham's lent or given by Hastings himself. Wilson is obliged to
letter respecting the surrender, are these words: own, that the transaction was “exceptionable in many re
“I apprehend that she [the Ranee] will contrive spects."
to defraud the captors of a considerable part of the
TREATY OF CHUNAR.
booty, by being suffered to retire without examina- | misgovernment, and still more by the heavy burtion. But this is your consideration and not mine. dens imposed on him by the Company, and the I should be very sorry that your officers and sol- rapacity of their servants. By the treaty with the diers lost any part of the reward to which they are late vizîr, a brigade of the Company's troops was so well entitled.” Surely the inference from this to be kept in Oude at his expense. In 1777 a is irresistible, that he understood and intended that second, called the temporary brigade, was added, the whole of the booty should belong to the mili- which he was to pay as long as he should require tary. Yet he talks of “uncandid advantage having its services. Then several detached corps in the been taken of a private letter written by him to Company's service were placed in his pay, and a Popham on another occasion (which it was not] great part of his own troops were put under the during the heat of the siege," and of trying if the command of British officers. Beside these, there law would not compel them to refund. He did not, was an immense civil establishment for the resihowever, risk the attempt, and he afterwards made dent, and another for another agent of the Comno reply to Mr. Burke's charge on this subject. pany; and there were pensions, allowances, and Perhaps the best solution of the problem is, that gifts to the various persons, civil and military, in he merely wished " to stimulate the zeal of the the Company's service. When all these are conmilitary by the prospect of reward, of which, at a sidered, we need not be surprised to find the vizîr, future time, he could determine the amount, and in 1779, deeply in arrear, and imploring to be even adjudicate on the validity of the claim 8." relieved from the expense of the temporary briBut the military knew him and their own interest gade, and the detached corps, which he declared too well; for it is said, he had played this game to be not merely useless, but even injurious. Haswith them before in the Rohilla war. At all events tings, however, refused any alleviation, declared Hastings gained nothing but the gratification of he was a vassal of the Company, and that it was his vengeance, by the deposition of Cheit Sing; for for them, not him, to determine respecting those the raising of the annual tribute proved an illusory troops. He further asserted in council, that am
biguities had been left in the treaty (which was The principal grounds on which Hastings and not the case), and that it was the part of the his advocates rely, for the justification of his treat- strongest to affix to them what meaning they ment of Cheit Sing, are, that he was meditating re- pleased—a general political maxim, no doubt, but bellion, and that he was bound to contribute to not often so frankly avowed. the expenses of the wars in which the Company In 1780, the Nabob was 1,100,0001. in arrear, engaged. As to the first, we have only Mr. Has- and it went on advancing. The governor-general tings own assertion, negatived by his conduct in then began to believe that his distress was real, going to Benares without troops, and a set of ru- and one of the objects of this journey to the upper mours and reports embodied in affidavits. As to provinces was his relief. the second, we doubt its applicability. The Com- By the treaty of Chunar the vizîr was relieved pany were not yet sovereigns in India ; they held from the expense of all the British troops, except of the emperor, and yet they refused to assist him the original brigade, and a regiment of Sepoys for with troops, or to pay him his tribute. Why then the resident's guard, and from all payments to should they exact from their vassal, what they re- English gentlemen, except those of the resident's fused to their liege? Further, though Cheit Sing office. He was further permitted to resume all might be bound to aid in the preservation of the the jagheers that he pleased, giving a pension Company's territories in Hindustan and Bengal, it equal to the net amount, to such of the holders as is not equally clear, that because they chose to had the Company's guarantee. Finally, too, he was waste their resources in unjust wars in the Deckan, to be allowed to resume that of Fyzoola Khân, he was to be called on for additional contributions. and to give him instead of it a pension.
While Hastings was at Chunar he received a In this treaty the governor-general appears exvisit from the vizîr of Oude, to whose capital he tremely liberal and disinterested; all is for the had intended to proceed, in order to arrange some advantage of the vizîr, nothing for that of the matters of importance, to facilitate which he had Company. But the reality was widely different. removed Bristow, and sent his friend Nat. Middle- Two of the greatest jagheerdars were the two ton again there, as resident. A treaty was ar- Begums, or princesses, that is, the mother and the ranged, the chief object of which was the relief of grandmother of the vizîr, to whom their husbands the vizîr's pecuniary difficulties, which were very had given jagheers, and left treasures which their great. Yet, amidst all his distress, he offered Has- savings had augmented to a large amount, and of tings a present of ten lacs of rupees. This present which it was now proposed to strip them, and to was accepted, and was applied to the public ser- hand the money over to the Company in payment vice ; but when advising the Directors of it four of the vizîr's arrears. To justify this, it was months afterwards, Hastings expressed a wish to asserted that they had no right to this property, be allowed to keep it as the reward of his labours. as a widow could only inherit an eighth by MoThis was certainly one of the weakest acts of which hammedan law; but against this there was length he ever was guilty. The Company at that time of undisturbed possession, and in the case of the was in the
utmost want of money ; and as yet the younger, most unfortunately for Mr. Hastings and Court of Directors hardly knew what the word his advocates, the positive guarantee of the British generosity meant. We need therefore hardly add, government in 1775, which cost her thirty lacs of that he met with a most decided refusal.
rupees, and which was solemnly recognized in The distress of the vizîr was occasioned partly 1778 by the governor and council. This, howby his own vices, weakness, extravagance, and
9 We know not Mr. Gleig's authority for asserting, that $ Thornton, ii. 303.
the wills under which they claimed were forgeries.