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«-as now the fifth campaign, during which their toils and sufferings were mt less remarkable than their exploits. Hunger and nakedness had ttniuently been their portion, in the midst of their most splendid suctdfes. Had not the incredibly hard Sting they were used to in their own country, under the severity of the old government, inured their bodies to go through much fatigue with a slender sustenance, and tew comfort";, they would not have proved adequate to the la' -ours and scanty support to which I hey submtted, with such admirable patience, in the course of their warlise. This part of their character attracted the notice of, foreign nations as much as of their own; and it '.vas often a matter of surprize, bow they could perform the duties of a military life with so stinted and wretched a fare, and under so many discouragements.
The army of Italy, in particular, had exhibited astonishing examples of fortitude in the most trying situations; that their enemies had concluded, from the reports of the difficulties to which they were reduced, in procuring the means of existence,' that nothing else would be needed to compel them to abandon their position, and withdraw to France. It was previously, however, to the present campaign, and while they were stationed among the rocks, extending along the south
of Piedmont, to the frontiers of France, that the French soldiers had occasion to exhibit their patience under hard fare. The coarse and disgusting food on which they subsisted, was compared to the Lacedemonian broth of old, and none, it was said, but Frenchmen, Greenlanders, or Scotch Highlanders, could have fed on such mefles.
It was by their perseverance, in these extremities, that they maintained the posts they occupied, and afforded time to Buonaparte to join them, at the head of those reinforcements, united with which they marched to the conquest of Jtalv.
This and their other atchfevements were inceilantly held out to the French armies, as incentives to adhere faithfully to a cause which they had hitherto supported witli so much glory. One more campaign would, probably, put an end to their toils; and, by procuring a glorious peace, enable them to return to their country, and spend their future lives with honour and ease, in the enjoyment of those remunerations promised them for their services.
Such were the arguments and expectations that animated the armies of France at this period, especially that which had performed such great things in Italy, and now hoped to close the year by the capture of Mantua, and the total fall,of the Austrian empire in Italy.
Campaign in Germany.—Opposite Designs of the French and Austrians.— Successes of the French.—They invest Ehrenbrit/tein.—Driven back, by the Archduke Charles, to Dujfeldorf.—The Division of the French Army under Moreau takes Post al Strasburg.—The Plan o) Operations proposed by this General.—Crosses the Rhine.—Reduces the Fortress oj Kehl.—Defeats tlic Austrians, under Marshal IFurvifcr, near Philip/burg.—And in various and successive Engagements.—The Austrians retire, in order to wait for Reinforcements, into the Interior of Germany.—-JunRion of tfie French Troops under Jourdan and Klcbcr.—These united reduce Frankfort.— Successes of Moreau in Swabia.—Cessation of Hostilities between the French and the Princes rf K'trtcmberg and Baden.—Conduct of Prussia.—A Prussian Army takes Possession of Nuremberg.—Impolicy os the French in IIts Mode os raising Contributions.—Cause os this.—Depredations of the French in Germany.—Operations of tlie French Armies under Moreau and Jourdan.— Disasters 'of the Austrians.—The Emperor represents the Situation of Germany, and his own Situation, in an Appeal to his Bohemian and Hungarian SuhjeRs.—Diet of the Empire.—Partakes of the general Consternation of Germany.—Determination to open a Negotiation for Peace with France. —The Tide of Suicefs turned against the French by the Germans, under the Archduke Charles.—Obstinate Engagements.—Masterly Retreat of the French Armies.—Particularly of thai under Moreau.—Consequences.— The Austrians occupied in the Siege of Kehl.—Sally of the Garrison there. —Various Adions.—Armistice between the French and Austrians.— The Diet of the Empire re-animated by the enterprizing Spirit and Success of the Archduke Charles, solicitous to regain the Favour of the Imperial Court.
WHILE Buonaparte was employed in a contest with the Austrian arms and authority in Italy, Jourdan and Moreau were engaged in a conflict with the fame formidable enemy on the Rhine; which ♦ lie French had long proposed to make the boundary os the republic, on the side of Germany.
The object to which the Austrians were thought to direct their motions was Luxembourg; the recovery of
which important fortress, at the opening of.the campaign, would have given great reputation to the Austrian arms, and opened, at the fame time, a" passage for the recovery of the Netherlands.
The French were no less desirous of obtaining possession of Mentz, in their attempts on which they had lost such numbers, and experienced so many dilappointments; but the Jbrtifications of this city had been
10 considerably increased, and the garrison so much strengthened, that, unless the French could attack it on the German, as well as on their own, side of the Rhine, the communication with Germany would smith it with continual supplies of men and provisions, and frustrate ii their endeavours to reduce it.
The opening of the campaign was auspicious to the French. Moving from Dufleldorf, that division which had wintered there, marched, under general Kleber, on the right side of the Rhine, towards
a body of Austrians, encamped at
Ik riier Sieg, to guard its pa stage against the French; but these delated them on the first of June, and, following their successes, encountered and routed another body, commanded by the prince of Wirterr.berg, on the fourth, at Altenkirchen, a place lying on- the road to Mentz, whither the French intended to force their way, in order to intercept its communication with Germany. In the first of these engagements, the Austrians lost about bra thousand men; in the second, near three thousand.
They had now crossed the Sieg, and the Latin, and were in pursuit of the troops they had defeated at the pafiage of these rivers: they had, at the fame time, invested the celebrated fortress of Ehrenbritsieiu, the capture of which would have given them the command of all the neighbouring country.
Happily for the Austrians, this was a place of extraordinary strength, and not to be subdued but by the greatest efforts and perseverance: m order, however, to secure it effectually, together with the adjacent parts, it was judged advifeable, by tJe Austrian commanders, to move,
with the greater part of their forces, to the defence of the German side of the Rhine.
The archduke Charles, who was at the head of the Imperial army, eroded that river accordingly, about the eight of June, in such force, as rendered the Austrians considerably superior in strength to the French, who, by this motion, were arrested in their progress towards Mentz, which they had nearly approached: and general Lefebre, one of their best officers, wa«, after a most brave and skilful defence, defeated, on the fifteenth, near Wetzlaar, and compelled to repass the Lahn, and retire towards the Seig, in his way back to Dufleldorf.
General Jourtlan, who commanded the French army, opposed to the archduke, after raising the siege of Ehrenbritstein, near Siegburg, took a position where he hoped to make a stand, until the reinlbrcements he expected had joined him; but the archduke, confiding in the goodness of his troops, as well as the superiority of their numbers, attacked the division under Kleber, on the twentieth, at Kirpen, and, aster a well-disputed action, compelled him to retire, and abandon all (he coiurtry he had reduced, in his march from Dufleldorf; to which place he found it neceflary to make a retreat with that part of the army under his command, while the other recrossed the Rhine at Nc-uvvied with Jourdan, and repossessed their former positions, in order to prevent the Austrians from deriving any farther advantages from their success.
Manheim and Mentz seemed now to lie open to the attacks of the French; but, as the protection they would receive from the Austrian
armies, armies, on the right fide of the Rhine, would render such an attempt extremely hazardous, they determined to besiege neither, but to leave their future reduction to the consequence os a plan os operations, which, if it succeeded according to their expectations, would not fail to put them in possession of those two cities, without the necessity of a siege.
When the archduke crossed to the right os the Rhine, he lest a tlrong division ot his forces in the Hundsdruck, the country lying on the left of tltat river, between Mentz, on the north, and Manheim, on the south. This division, together with the garrisons of those two cities, was reputed sufficient'to watch aitd repel the motions of general Moreau, who commanded the French forces in (hat quarter.
But this active genera! was intent on a very different plan from that of annoying the Austrian division, or os forming the siege of either of these places. In order, however, to deceive them, by such appearances as might facilitate his designs, he made a variety of motions, indicating an attack of several of their posts; and, while they were making arrangements to oppose him, he*' drew off, unperceived, almost the whole of his army, and, by an expeditious march, reached Slralburgh before the Austrians had discovered his motions.
He had now attained the spot from whence he was to enter upon the execution of his project, which was, to cross the Rhine, opposite this city, into Swabja, and to take the fort of Kehl; by being muster of which, he would gain the command of a large extent of country in its proximity, and secure an
entrance to the French into that circle.
He had proposed to attempt a passage in different places; and, in order the more easily to effect his design, lo take possession of some of the islands in that river, but most of these happened to be overflowed, and the others were possessed by the Austrians, who were to be dislodged before he could make good hi! landing. To conceal his motions, he attacked them in the night of the twenty-fourth of June, in such sorce, and with so much resolution, that the Austrians were soon obliged to retire across the bridges communicating with the German side, and which they had not lime to destroy. Over these the French passed to that fide, but they had neither sufficient artillery nor cavalry to astist the infantry in cafe of an attack, which was every moment expected. Jn (his critical situation, general Moreau determined to inarch forwards with the few pieces of cannon he had seized upon the islands. With these he resolutely assaulted the fortress of Kehl, and carried it. This sudden and unexpected success greatly alarmed the Austrian army, under the archduke: the rear of which was thereby put into danger, while the front was exposed to the force under Jourdan: who, collecting the divisions that had retreated, was preparing to join Kleber, again advancing towards the Au-strians.
Marshal Wurmser, wdio commanded the Austrian troops in the Brilgaw, from which large detachments had been sent to Italy, was unable to maintain his ground against Moresu, and the archduke was himself compelled to hasten to his aid; but, before he could arrive, Moreau
Moreau fell upon the Austrians at near Coblentz. The Austrian geRenchan, a village near Philips- neral, Wartenscben, had not been burgh, and totally defeated them, able to oppose thefe various moveon the twenty-eighth of June, with ments of the French, who had a conliderable loss of men' and can worsted his troops on several ocnon. He pursued them to Radstadt, `casions, and taken or killed near where, having received re-inforce- 'two thousand of them: After difa ments, they made a stand; but, after persing all the various corps that an obftinate conflict, were again attempted to impede their progress, routed on the sixth of July. Ge they arrived,'on the twelfth of July, neral Laroche had, on the second, within light of Francfort on the defeated a large body of them pont. Main. ed on Mount Kubis, the highest of This city,' with several others in those called the Black Mountains. its proximity, surrendered to the
They now retreated to the vil- 'French, -on capitulations that left lage of Ettlingen, a strong position them in pofleflion of their municipal in the neighbourhood of Manlicim. laws and goveriment. In order to Here they were joined by the quiet the minds of the Germans, major part of the archdoke's army, and convince then that the views and appeared relolved to make a of the French did not extend to any vigorous reîsiance for the prefer- Terimanent pofleffion of the town's vation of that part of Germany. and territories they had feizerli ge. The battle was fought, on the ninih neral Jourdan isfied a proclamation, of July, with great fury' on both by which he formally engaged to Edes, but ended to the advantage protect the judicial chamber of the of the French. They were re-empire at Wetzlar, situated in the pulsed in four charges, but fuc- circle of the Upper Rhine, at ceeded in the fiftli, which was fome dilance from Francfort. He made with the bayonet. The Au- granted'a laf guard to all its memfirians loft great numbers 1lain in-hers, and strictly forbad its proceedthe held, bende fifteen hundred who ings to be disturbed urider any prewere taken.
tence. This victory decideil the superi- Among the cities that surrendered ority on the Rhine in four of the 'to Jourdan was that of Wurtturish, French. The Auftriatis left totally one of the moit considerable wishona uncovered ihe citics of Menty, and ricks and eccleliafical principalities Manheim, and the fortrefles lot in Geriny. Here he found imPhilipib rgh and Ihrenbretitçin, inenfe ningazines and two hundred and retired farther into Germany,pieces of crunon. It fell into his lo wait for reinforcements, before hands on the tiventy-fixth of July; they coulil venture to rolume offen- and fortly after, having forced five operations. " ***?: "Wartenleben lo retire beyond the
In the mean time, general Kicker Ridnitz, rear. Bamberg, on the had again proceeded from Dui-' first or Arnofi, he took posleffion of derf, and advanced along the richt thatcapital of Franconia, on the same bank of the Rlive. He was joineda : hike Wurtiburgt, it was also on the second of July by general a bishop.ic and principnlity, and Jourdan, who lind croilal the Rline poflc aici a confiderable territory... Vol. XXXVIII.