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Journal of the Eighty-third Regiment.
JOURNAL OF THE EIGHTY-THIRD REGIMENT.
Continued from page 418.) " Art. 6th.-When circumstances oblige any battalion, in rear of a coluinn, to halt, the head of such column must not do so, without the special order of the officer commanding, who will judge whether there is a necessity forit, considering always the magnitude of the interval which will thereby be occasioned in his column, the necessity there is that the column be well closed up, and the probability that, from the nature of the road, the head will soon meet with an impediment, and give time for the rear to close up.
“ Coimbra, 4th May.- Art. Ist. The army will be brigaded, and will stand in line, as follows, until further orders
Cavalry.-Major-General Cotton, 14th, 20th (K. G. L.), and 16th Light Dragoons.
Foot Guards.-Brigadier-General H. Campbell, two battalions, and one company 5th battalion both regiment (rifles).
Infantry of the Line.- 1st Brigade Major-General Hill, 1st battalion 3d regiment, 2d battalion 66th regiment, 2d battalion 48th regiment, and one company 5th battalion 60th regiment (rifles).
Do.-3d Brigade-Major-General Tilson, five companies, 5th battalion 60th regiment (rifles), Ist battalion 88th regiment, Ist battalion 4th Portuguese regiment (grenadiers), and 2d battaliou 87th regiment.
Do.-5th Brigade, Brigadier-General A. Campbell, 2d battalion 7th Fuzileers, Ist battalion 10th Portuguese regiinent, 2d battalion 53d regiment, and one company 5th battalion 60th regiment (rifles).
Do.-7th Brigade, Brigadier-General Cameron, 2d battalion 9th regiment, 2d battalion 10th Portuguese regiinent, 2d battalion 83d regiment, and one company 5th battalion 60th regiment.
Do.-6th Brigade, Brigadier-General A. Stewart, ist battalion of detachments, 1st battalion, 16th Portuguese regiment, and 29th regiment.
Do.--4th Brigade, Brigadier-General Sonntay, 2d battalion of detachments, 2d battalion 16th Portuguese regiment and 97th regiment, and one company 5th battalion 60th regiment (rifles).
Do.—2d Brigade, Major-General M.Kenzie, 3d battalion 27th regiment, ist battalion 45th regiment, and 2d battalion $ Ist regiment.
King's German Legion, under Major-General Murray.-BrigadierGeneral Langworth, Ist and 7th battalions of the Line. Brigadier-GeDeral Drieberg, ed and 5th ditto.
“ Art. 2d. Althongli the preceding regulation is to be understood as the ordinary line of battle, circumstances of ground and situation
may render some deviation from it nectosdly.
Journal of the Eighty-third Regiment.
“ Art. 3d.The light infantry companies belonging, and riflemen attached to each brigade of infantry, are to be formed together on the left of the brigade, under the command of a field-officer or captain of light infantry in the brigade, whom the general commanding will fix upon for that purpose. On all occasions in which the brigade may be formed in line or in column, for the purpose of opposing the enemy, the light infantry companies and riflemen will, of course, be in front, flanks, or rear, according to the nature of the ground and of the occasion.
“.Art. 4th.-No requisitions are to be made on the country but by the Commissary-General, his deputies, or his assistants, unless in cases of absolute necessity, and in which small bodies of troops are on the march unattended by a commissary, and even then the indispensibleness must always be clearly made out for the Commander of the Forces' satisfaction.
“ Art. No. 5.-All requisitions made contrary to this order will be paid for by the Commissary, and the amount charged against the officer who signed them.
“ Art. No. 6.-Officers must have observed the scarcity there is in Portugal of the supplies necessary for our army, and how essentially the discipline and comfort of the troops depend upon a regular distribution. The Commander of the forces therefore trusts that generals of brigades, and commanding-officers of regiments, particularly those who may be detached, will constantly communicate with the officer of the commissariate department attached to their respective corps, and also advise and assist them, as far as may be possible, in their endeavours to procure supplies for the troops.
“ Art. No. 15.—The 16th Light Dragoons will march into Coimbra to-morrow, and take up the quarters now occupied by the 14th regiment of Light Dragoons, who will move out to those villages in front of the town which have been allotted for their reception.
“Coimbra, 5th May,' 1809, Art. No. 2.-Whenever an order is given for troops to march on the following day, the commissioners attached to these troops will issue thein one day's meat, which must be cooked the same night, and reserved for the following day, in order that the soldiers, on arriving at their vew ground, may be sure of having some refreshment.
“ Art. No. 7.-His Excellency the Commander of the Forces will set the troops under arms at seren o'clock to-morrow morning, in complete marching order. The Quarter-Master-General will point out the ground.
“ Art. No. 10.-Majors of brigade, and adjutants of regiments, are desired to assemble at the main guard by five o'clock this evening, to receive orders from Lieutenant-General Sherbrooke; each adjutant must be provided with a field-return, specifying the probable number of
Journal of the Eighty-third Regiment.
men which his battalion will hare under arms to-morrow. This order likewise applies to the artillery, the cavalry, and the Portuguese.
“ Art. No. 12.–Such horses of the dragoons and artillery as will eat the country forage are to be fed in toto with it. Commanding officers of dragoons and artillery corps will give directions to have all their horses accustomed to the native corn and forage, by feeding them first with half English and half Portuguese, then with two-thirds Portuguese, and the remaing third English; and lastly with indigenous food only. The Commissary-General will make arrangements accordingly, both for the cavalry and the artillery.
“ Art. No. 13.-The Commander of the Forces begs to call the attention of all general, field, and staff officers, to the foregoing order. It is very desireable that all horses should feed upon the forage afforded by the country, which none will, unless brought to it by degrees. He there fore recommends to have all horses with the army fed in the proportions above stated. The Commissary-General will, however, as far as his stores allow, be pleased to attend to the requisition of any general, field, or staff officer, who may require a larger proportion of English forage for any particular horse.”
May 6th.— Agreeable to the general orders of yesterday the review and muster of the troops took place on the sands (wićhout Coimbra), which stretch from the river to the skirts of the high-road leading to Oporto. The strength of the British army in Portugal then appeared as follows: Present in the Field, -Artillery, - 438 effective rank ank file.
Cavalry, - 1,347 do. do.
Of these General M.Kenzie's brigade was stationed at Abrantes, with advanced parties on the eastern frontier, and are there returned on command. Major-General Tilsou's brigade, accompanied by one squadron of the 14th regiment of light dragoons, and another of the 3d K. G. Legion, were attached to the Portuguese army under Marshal Beresford, but are included in the above amount of effectives, as they were on the review ground. Independent of those troops of the Portuguese army which General Silveira had under hiin, in Tras os Montes, and of the regiments Marshal Beresford had organized at Tromar, and sent northwards to co-operate with the British, should be mentioned the gallant Loyal Lusitanian Legion, which, uuder Colonel Payne, kept in check a strong divisiou of Marshal Victor's army, aud defended the bridge of Journal of the Eighty-third Regiment.
Alcantara. There was likewise a brigade of Portuguese militia and ordenanza assembled at Vizeu, under the command of that indefatigable and enterprising officer, Sir Robert Wilson, while another corps of a similar kind, in the woods of Sardao, and on the banks of the Aguerla, was acting under the direction of Colonel Trant, than whom a braver and more accomplished officer never lived. These two last mentioned corps very much harrassed the flanks of the enemy's advanced guard, which lay at Albergaria, besidas greatly impeding the movements of convoys and escorts.
By half past six o'clock, A. M. the line was drawn up nearly parallel to the high-road, but with part of the left wing thrown back, forming #crochet almost perpendicular to the remainder. The whole extent of the front might exceed two miles and an half, English measure.
Sir Arthur Wellesley was received with presented arms. passed in front and inspected the whole line. On his approach to General Carneron's brigade, I was flattered by General Sherbrooke's saying,~" The 83d, Sir Arthur, one of the finest body of men in the neld.” “ Very handsome corps indeed,” replied the Commander of the Forces,
Having examined the entire, Sir Arthur ordered the line to break into open column left in front, march past, selute, and, by brigades, to file off by sections to their respective quarters.
The Portuguese regiments, brigaded with the British, bad entered Coimbra on the th. The first battalions of the 4th, 10th, aud 16th regiments, were really fine corps, and tolerably disciplined. The first battalion, 20th regiment, under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel Bushe, was also a very soldier-like and promising body of men. Indeed, I thought them, at first sight, hardy veterans. The 2d battalion 10th regiment, which was brigaded with us, was, however, far less advanced ia discipline, and composed of men shorter in stature, and weaker in appearance than either of the former battalions.
The officers were also very inexperienced, and, with the exception of the Lieutenant-Colonel and the Major, totally incapable of guiding their men. One captain only was present with the battalion, and that one was blind of an eye. There were five lieutenants and two ensigns present, and doing duty with the corps ; these made the total number of officers with the regiment amount to ten, exclusive, however, of a standard bearer. God forbid that I should, by this statement, couvey any censure on the commanding officer.
No person can more highly esteem or value another man than I do Lieut.-Colonel Rezende de Luiz, with whom I had much conversation, and very frequent intercourse, and than whom, it is but justice to say, I never found a braver soldier, a better informed officer, or a more accomplished gentleman. Nor ought I to pass without notice the excellent assistant he had in the Major, who, though still a young man, lad seen a great deal of service, and passed a very different life from that led by Journal of the Eighty-third Regiment.
many Portuguese officers. In the Roussillon, where the French theme selves joined their tribute of applause to the well-deserved admiration which the Spaniards expressed of the bravery and discipline of their Portuguese allies, Major -'s courage and prudence were strongly noticed by the General of division to which he belonged.
One circumstance, however, ought to be related, as it shews how unjustly many persons accuse general-officers of not displaying a greater spirit of enterprize when such a numerical force is under their command, as that borne ou the embarkation or marching returns. The establishment of the 2d battalion, 10th Portuguese regiment, was 850 men, and as it was necessary, previous to entering the review-field, to have a return of its true and effective strength (in order that a proper space of ground might be taken for it in line), I called on the Adjutant for such document, and though 800 men were accounted for on paper, not more than 387 could be brought for inspection. I could not with-hold my astonishment, nor avoid expressing my ideas on this great dimunition of num
Count Rezende and the Major both spoke French, and very readily explained the cause, for fifteen men per company were, by the permission of the general-officer (who lately commanded the brigade towhich the 2d battalion, 10th Portuguese regt. was attached) on furlough, the remainder were sick, on command, or absent without leave, under which head, it is but justice to say, there were very few indeed. The Count added, that
no ways surprised or hurt him, as he was himself astonished that the War Minister, circumstances considered, could invest any General-Officer with a power of making such a reduction to the effective regular force ; for surely, continued he, every one must admit that it now behoves Portugal to strain every nerve to enlarge the standing army.
No one but those who have been in the environs of Coinbra can conceive how beautiful they are ; for it requires the opportunity of exainining the never-(easing novelty of the charming prospects, which every where gratify the eye of a stranger, to appreciate the delightful scenery. The country, though mountainous, is well cultivated, while the olive, the
cypress, which abound in this district, add further variety to the landscape ; and, indeed, the aspect of these wooded heights, and the picturesque form of the hills themselves, are truly enchanting.
The higher town is not less attractive from the fine perspective it affords; so that the vicinity of Coimbra will bear comparison with the handsomest spot in the whole kingdom. Rivulets, descending through meandering clefts, adorn the face of the heights, empty themselves into the Mondego. Other streams, in their several courses to the same receiver, form agreeable vallies, which, in their turn, become fruitful gardeus, orchards, or meadows, whose borders are lined with poplars, while the rising grounds which contine them are cloatired with spreading trees. VOL. JV. NO. 20.
orange, and the