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Last Charge Of The Old Guard

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A nsw Frouch work gives the following grand pen pictura of the last desperate charge of Napolaon's "Old Guard," at Watcrloo : "During the""day tho artillery of the Juard under Drouefc, maintaiued its ovvn renown, aud the Guard itaelf had freuentiy been used to rosiore the battle in various part of the field, and always with suceess. The Euglish wore fast becoming exhausted, and in an hour more would have been foroedin to a disastrous defeat, but for the tiruely arrival of Blucher. But when thoy saw hini with 30,)00 Prussians approaching, their courags rsvived, while Napoleon was filled with amazeruent. A beuten enemy about to 'orín a junetion with tha allies while iroucliy, who had been sent to keep theui n check, was nowhere to bo seen! Alas! what great plans a single inefficiënt commander can overthrow ! "In a moment Napoleon saw that he could not sustain the attaok of so ruany rresh troopg, if once allowed to forni a uuotion with the allied forces ; and he detennined to stake his fate on ouo bold cast, and endeavorcd to pierce the allied center with a grand charge of the Old Guard, and thus throw hiniself between ;he two armies. For this purpose the Imperial Guard was called up, and divided into immense columns whioh woro to meet in the British centre. ïhat under llaille was nosooner in the firethan it diaappeared like mist. The otlier was uuder Ney, the 'bravest of the brave,' and an order to advance given. Napoleon accompanied them part of the way down the slope, and halting a few momeuts in the hollow, addressed them a few words. He told them that the battle rested with them, that he relied on their valor, tried on go many fields. 'Vive l'Einpereur!' answered him with a shout that was heard above tho thunder of tha artillery. ''The whol Continental struggle exhibited no subliiaer spectacle than the last effort of Napoleon to savo his sinkiug empire. The greatest military skill and energy the worid ever possessed had been taxed to the utmost duriog the day. - Thrones were tottering on the turbulent field, aud tha shadows of fugitive kings fiitted through the smoke of tha field of battle. Bonaparte watched with intenso anxiety the advanee of that column, when the smoke of the battle wrapped it frora his sight, aud the utter despair of his great heart, when the curtain lifted over a fugitive army, and the despairing siy-iek rang out, 'Tho Guard recoils! the Guard reooils!' makes us for a moment forget all the carnage in syuipathy with his distress. 'The old guard fait the prenc9 of the immense responsibility, and resolved not to prove unworthy of the great trust committed to it. Nothiug could be more imposing than its movnmeuts to. the assault. It had never recoiled before from a human foe, and the aliied forces beheld with awe its firm and steady advance to the final charge. For a moment tho batteriea stopped 'playing, and tho firing ceased aiong the British line, as, without the beating of a drum or a bugle note to checr their courage, they moved in dead silene over tho field Their tread was like the mufiled thunder, while the dazzling helmets of cuirassiers flashod long lines of light upon the dark aud terrible mass that swopt in oue strong wave along. The stern Drouet was then ainid his guns, and on evory brow was writtcö the unalterablo resolution to conquer or die. The next moment the artillery oponed, and the head of that gallant column soemcd to sink into the earth. Rank after rank went down: yot they neither ttopped nor faltcrod. Disgolviug squadrons and whole battalions disappearing one after another in tho destructivo fire affocted not their courage. ïhe ranks closed up as beforo, and each treading over his fallen conirades, passed unflinchingly on. "The horso whiuh Noy rodo sank under him, and scarcelyhad he mountod another before it also sank totho earth, and so another and another, till iive ia succession had been shot from under him. Then, with his drawn saber, Lo marched sUrnly at the head of his column. In vain did the artillery hurl its storm of iron upon that living mass. Up to the vcry muzzle they preseed, and driving the artillery men from their pieces, pressed on through the English line. But, just as the victory seemed wou, a file of soldiers who lay flat on the ground, behind a ridge of oarth, suddenly rose and poured a volley in tbcir very faces. Another sul another followerl, til] onc broad shco of flanies rolled on their bosoms, and in such fierce aiul uucxpeetcd flow, that they staggered bef'oro it. JSefore the Guard hadf time to rally again and advance, a lioary column of infantry foll on its left flank in close and deadly volley, causing it, in its unsettled state, to swerve on the right. At that instant a whole brigad of cavalry thundered ou the right flank, and penetrated where cavalry had never gone beforo. "The intrepid Guard could have borno up against the unexpectod fire from soldier they did not see; and would have rolled back the iufantry tbat had boldly eharged their flank; but the cavalry finished the disorder into which they had been momentarilv thrown, and broke the shaken ranks before they had timo to reform, and th eagles of tho hithorto invincibla Guard were pughed baoKward down the slöpa. It was theu the army, seized Trith despair, shrieked out, 'The Guard recoita ! the Guard recoils!' and turnad and fled in wild dismay. To soe j tha Guard in confusión, was a sight they j had never before beheld, and it froze every heart with terror. "For a long time they stood and let tha cannon balls pass through their rauks, disdaining to turn their backs on the foe. Miohel, at the hoad of these battalions, fought like a lion. To every oommand of tho enemy to surronder, he replied: ' Ths Guard dies but never surrmders' Aud, with Lis last breath bequeathing tiiis glorious motto to the Guara, he feil a witness to its truth. Death traversed those eight battalions with such rapid footsteps that they soon dvvindled away to two, which turued in hopelcss daring on the overwhelniing numbers that pressed on thair retiring footstepa. ''Last of all but a single battakon, the debris of the 'oolumn of granite' at Marengo, was left. Into this Napoleon flung himsclf. Cambreuil, it. brava commander, saw with terror tho Emperor in its frail keeping. Ho was not struggling now for Tiotory: he waa intent oaly on showing how the Gnard could dia. Approaching the Emperor, he cricd out: 'Rstire! Do jou not seo that death has no need of you?' and closing mournfully but sternly round the expiring eagles, those brava heart bade Napoleon an eternal adieu, and, flinging thomsslves on the enemy, were soon piled with the dead at their feet. "Many of tho officers wero seen to destroy theniselves rather than suffer defeat. Thus, greater even in its own defeat than any other corps of men in gaiuing a victory, the Old Guard passcd from tho stage, and the curtain dropped upon its strange eareer. It had fought its last battle." ■ in m A Eoyal Mistare. - Princo William of Baden who is the Austrian service, was expected to visit the bridge at Kehl, and orders were given to receiye him with all hu honors due to hia rank. - Timo passed, and still he did not come. - At last Major Weyler, wüo was in coramand at Kehl, roceived a telegraphio dispatcli as follows: "I leave to-morrow evening, about 4 o'olock. Come to the station to meet me. William." Iinmediately the Major notifiod the civil and military authorities at Kehl. He gave notice that all the workmen on tho bridge, and all the soldiers of the engineers, should be ready, in f uil dress, at the time of tho prince's arrival. In consideration of tho time of his comiug, the I Prince would have to dino at Kehl. TJio Major organized a little banquet of twenty covers, and as the Kehl cooks are not up to the times, he went and ordered the dinner from tho bast restauratur of Stratburg. The noxt day all was ready. The civil authorities were at the statiou, adorned with the insignia of their office; the military were drawn up in fiue array before the station. At last tho whistle of the locomotive announcedthe approaoh of the train. It topped at tho station, and tho passenger got out. Whero is the l'rince? No Prinoe appears. But a man pushes away tho erowd, and throws himsulf iato tbc arms of the astonished Major. It was his brother, Mr. William, Weyler, whora ho did not expect, and who had sent him the dispatch that caused tho blunder. At first the oivil and military authoritios Eeenied disposed to be angry. But the amazed look of the Major soon showed that the trrek wa involuutary, and that he himiolf was its first victim. Then a smile came over every face. The thing was taken in good part. Tho banquet was eaten gaily and found delicious. A hogshead of beer was tapped, and consoled the soldiers for the trouble they had gono to. Tho Major's brother is still proud of having been received with such honors.