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nish out-posts, and spread terror and havoc among the besiegers. When at last such a force was collected by the European commander, as to render further opposition useless, a message was sent by him, that unless there was a timely surrender, no one should be spared. The Indians returned the heroic answer, “Que corra la sangre !" (Let the blood flow!) The threat was carried into execution, and after a gallant resistance, every one of the brave defenders was put to the sword.

We quote from Mr. Ward the following romantic account of the sufferings of General Victoria during a period of the war :

«Victoria's trials did not cease with this pursuit : harassed, and worn out, by the fatigues which he had undergone, his clothes torn to pieces, and his body lacerated by the thorny underwood of the tropics, he was indeed allowed a lit. tle tranquillity ; but his sufferings were still almost incredible. During the summer, he managed to subsist upon the fruits of which nature is so lavish in those climates; but in the winter he was attenuated by hunger, and I have heard him repeatedly affirm, that no repast has afforded him so much pleasure since, as he experienced, after being long deprived of food, in gnawing the bones of horses, or other animals, that he happened to find dead in the woods. By degrees, he accustomed himself to such abstinence, that he could refrain four, and even fire days, without tasting any thing but water, without experiencing any serious inconvenience ; but whenever he was deprived of sustenance for a longer period, bis sufferings were very acute. For thirty months he never tasted bread, fior saw a buman being, nor thought, at times, ever to see one again. His clothes were reduced to a single wrapper of cotton, which he found one day, when driven by hunger be had approached nearer than usual to some Indian huts, and this he regarded as an inestimable treasure.

The mode in which Victoria, cut off, as he was, from all communication from the world, received intelligence of the revolution of 1821, is hardly less ex. traordinary than the fact of his having been able to support existence amidst so many hardships, during the intervening period.

“When in 1818 he was abandoned by all the rest of his men, he was asked by two Indians, who lingered with him to the last, and on whose fidelity he knew he could rely, if any change took place, where he wished them to look for him? He pointed, in reply, to a mountain at some distance, and told them that on that mountain, perhaps, they might find his bones. His only reason for selecting it, was its being particularly rugged, and inaccessible, and surrounded by forests of a vast extent.

“The Indians treasured up this lint, and as soon as the first news of Iturbide's declaration reached them, they set out in quest of Victoria ; they separated on arriving at the foot of the mountain, and employed six whole weeks in examining the woods with which it was covered. During this time, they lived principally by the chase ; but finding their stock of maize exhausted, and all their efforts una. vailing, they were about to give up the attempt, when one of them discovered, in crossing a ravine wbich Victoria occasionally frequented, the print of a fool, which he immediately recognised to be that of an European. By European, I mean of Eu. ropean descent, and consequently accustomed to wear shoes, which always give a difference of shape to the foot, very perceptible to the eye of a native. The Indian waited two days upon the spot, but seeing nothing of Victoria, and find. ing his supply of provisions quite at an end, he suspended upon a tree, near the place, four tortillas, or little maize cakes, which were all he had left, and set out for his village, in order to replenish his wallets, hoping that if Victoria should pass in the mean time, the tortillas would attract his attention, and convince him that some friend was in search him.

His little plan succeeded completely : Victoria, on crossing the ravine, two days afterwards, perceived the maize cakes which the birds had fortunately not devoured. He had then been four whole days without eating, and upwards of two years without tasting bread ; and he says himself, that he devoured the tortillas before the cravings of his appetite would allow him to reflect upon the singularity of finding them on this solitary spot, where he had never before seen any trace of a human being. He was not at a loss to determine whether they had been left there by friend or foe ; but feeling sure that whoever had left them, intend. ed to return, he concealed bimself near the place, in order to observe his motions, and to take his own measures accordingly.

“Within a short time the Indian returned. Victoria instantly recognised him, and abruptly started from his concealment, in order to welcome his faithful follower ; but the man, terrified at seeing a phantom covered with hair, emaciated, and clothed only with an old cotton wrapper, advancing upon him with a sword in his hand, from amongst the bushes, took to flight; and it was only on hearing himself repeatedly called by his name, that he recovered his composure suffi. ciently to recognise his old general. He was affected beyond measure at the state in which he found him, and conducted bim instantly to his village, where Victo. ria was received with the greatest enthusiasm. The report of his re-appearance spread like lightning through the province, where it was not credited at first, so firmly was every one convinced of his death, but as soon as it was known that Guadelūpě Victoria was indeed in existence, all the old insurgents rallied round him. In an incredibly short time, he induced the whole province, with the exception of the fortified towns, to declare for independence, and then set out to join Iturbide, who was at that time preparing for the siege of Mexico. He was received with great apparent cordiality ; but his independent spirit was too little in unison with Iturbide's projects, for this good understanding to continue long. Victoria had fought for a liberal form of government, and not merely for a change of masters; and Iturbide, unable to gain him over, drove him again into the woods, during his short-lived reign, from whence he only returned to give the signal for a general rising against the too ambitious emperor.”

Vicente Guerrero, the military rival of Victoria and Bravo, and now the popular leader in Mexico, was equally distinguished for his gallantry and obstinate attachment to the cause of freedom. All accounts agree in describing this extraordinary individual as distinguished by a singular energy of character, and activity of intellect. We regret that Mr. Ward has afforded so few details of his military and political career. They would clearly illustrate the peculiarities of the revolutionary struggle in Mexico, in which General Guerrero took, perhaps, a more uniformly active part, than any one of his country men. His ar. dour was too great to admit of an inactive participation in the danger of the times; he was always on the offensive ; always heating up some unsuspecting post, or, when his means allowed it, attacking with his characteristic energy the main force of the Spaniards. His iron frame enabled him to defy exposure, and to undergo a degree of privation and suffering scarcely credible. He was the only one of the patriot chieftains who could boast of Indian lineage ; and to this distinction may be attributed in a great measure the popular favour which he has always enjoyed. With his two illustrious cotemporaries, the present president, and late vice-president, he has been the object of the affectionate admiration of the Mexicans, and may now be regarded as the only survivor of the leading men of the revolution, whose patriotism is unsuspected, and whose popularity is undiminished.

From the peculiar locality of the contending parties in Mexico, the insurgents being scattered over the country, and the Spanish authorities remaining in quiet possession of the cities, one consequence of a happy nature resulted. The great libraries which had been established under the auspices of the church, were preserved untouched ; and the scientific institutions which had just sprung into existence, remained unmolested. If we mistake not, every city of consequence in the republic was transferred by capitulation; and, even when the storm of war approached their walls, the protecting arm of ecclesiastical authority was stretched forth to save the institutions which that authority had called into being. Beside the great scientific establishments in the capital, the libraries and seminaries of learning in the smaller cities, whilst they show the existence of some spirit of beneficence in the Spanish government, remain the solitary useful legacies which the colonial clergy have bequeathed. The library at Puebla, which has been preserved and guarded by the watchful care of the bishop of that state, a prelate whose talents and accomplishments all travellers join in celebrating, is a proud monument of the well exercised power of the Catholic clergy.

To the purely military character of the revolution, and to the ecclesiastical institutions, may be attributed the creation of the two great interests, which existed at the close of the war. Mexico was a nation of soldiers and of priests; and, in the struggle between the two parties, the civil character of her citizens made little progress. The age of bigoted attachment to religion having passed, and the identity of devotion to the church and to the Spanish government being established by the declaration of the Pope himself, (in the Enciclicu, or circular of 24th September 1824,) the triumph of the military followed as a matter of course. Religious enthusiasm yielded to the paramount influence; and the clergy soon found, that the only mode of maintaining even a portion of their power, was by being contented with a subordinate station in the community. If the foremost rank was yielded to the soldier, he had no objection to the exercise of power by the spiritual father in an inferior sphere. The first fruit of the military passion of the day, was the elevation of Iturbide to the throne, and the prostration of the liberties of the country at his feet. Its permanent effects are seen in the subjection of civil to military authority, and the contamination of the new republic with the poison of a morbid admiration of military fame, and eagerness for the attainment of military distinction. To this hour, the government of Mexico is, de facto, military. Civil offices exist, and a regularly constituted form of government has been established; but civil office seems to be little more than the recompense for military prowess. A recurrence to a list of the public functionaries, will satisfy us of the fact. The president, vice-president, and more than half the cabinet are military men ; several of the governors of the states, by a singular anomaly in the political system, are generals of division and military commandants under the federal government; the diplomatic corps has its share of martial men; and, if the inquiry be followed out, it will be found, that, from the highest to the lowest rank in the government, civil merit, an acquaintance from education and early discipline with civil duties, is little regarded. But further than this. The administration of justice to a great extent is in the same hands. In the year 1827, so great was the increase of crime in the metropolis, that it was found necessary to re-organize the martial tribunals of the war and to render all offences, above the grade of larceny, cognizable before them. Treason, murder, robbery and all the higher crimes are excluded from civil courts; and, so late as the trial of the notorious state prisoner Arenas, the military court of Mexico warmly resented an attempt made by another body to take cognizance of the matter. The police of all the towns is administered by the soldiery. The public walks, on all festivals, are filled with gens d'armes-a sergeant's guard parades nightly in the lobbies of the theatre. The power of an officer corresponding to our constable, invested with civil authority only, is unknown. The bayonet and not the staff is the badge of authority.

The burthen of a standing army is most severely felt in Mexico and is an evil not easily removed. By the report of the Secretary at War in 1827, the army consisted of no less than 58,955 men, of whom, though but 32,000 were under arms, all were liable to be called into service, and all at one time or other had been in the receipt of pay. The expenses of the war department in the present year, were estimated at nine millions of dollars, about four-fifths of the whole expenditures of government. There are at this time eight generals of division on full pay and two on half pay, besides twenty-six brigadiers, whose joint compensation amounts annually to 150,000 dollars. Hitherto the nominal war with Spain has afforded a pretext for the continuance of a large disposable force and now renders any diminution of the army extremely difficult. Other obstacles also exist, not easily surmounted. The resources of the country have thus far been sufficient to enable the government to pay their troops, and have postponed the dangers apprehended from throwing so large a body of men suddenly out of employment. But the failure of many sources of revenue during the last year, and the shock given to the national credit by the non-payment of the interest on the foreign loans, render it probable that the period is approaching, at which the strength of the government will be ascertained, when put in opposition to the demands of a rapa

cious and idle soldiery, and when the decisive measure of a great retrenchment of the military expenses must take place.

The effects of the martial character of the Revolution in New Spain in the undue elevation of military, and depression of civil habits, have been thus cursorily traced -not so much to discourage the hopes and expectations of those who invidiously call themselves the partisans of the new community, as to account for the slow progress which it has made, and the distressing convulsions it has experienced. We are aware that in answer to our opinions it will be urged, that a nation which so soon after a revolution could organize a government corresponding to that of Mexico, cannot be so thoroughly infected with a military spirit. We most readily reply, that at this time of day, and more particularly on this side of the Atlantic, a government military in form and not despotic cannot exist. In Mexico especially, there was no choice. The fall of Iturbide was a lesson to such of the revolutionary leaders as were alone able to establish an arbitrary sway; and their parity of merit induced a rivalship which effectually prevented the undue elevation of any one. The theory of civil government was then the only alternative. It is not, however, we will add, the form so much as the spirit of the institus tions to which we have referred; the spirit, the existence of which no one with opportunities of observation can deny-the spirit which renders military distinction the object of universal ambition, and the key to popular favour; which entails on the nation the burthen of a large standing army in time of peace, which interferes with the enjoyment of civil right, which has hitherto prevented the institution of jury trials and the writ of habeas corpus; and which, if we may descend to particulars, has more than once enabled an officer of government to break into the house of a foreign merchant, and compel the payment of duties before the term of credit had expired, while at the very time the protested bills of the government were postponed or neglected, to the ruin of the individual whose immunities were thus violated.

On the expulsion of the Spanish forces and the downfall of the ephemeral empire of Iturbide, two great parties in the republic came into existence. Mr. Ward compares them to the party distinctions of our republic. We shall see in some points how true, and in others, how incorrect the analogy is. One circumstance however may be here noticed ; that owing to the peculiar relations of the Mexican republic in regard to the mother country, and the strong line of distinction drawn between the different orders of society, a virulence of political feeling has been engendered far exceeding any thing on our records, and inducing acts which even a political latitudinarian, a being proverbially of pliant principles and easy conscience, would find it difVOL. IV.-NO. 7.


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