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Journal of the Eighty-third Regiment.

unfurnished with any knowledge of its final destination. About two o'clock, P.M. an officer of the quarter-master-general's department rode up, and put into General C's hand, a slip of paper, saying, “ on that is written the place where your brigade is to halt; it lies somewhere on the left, though I cannot point out eractly wkere.” The brigade, therefore, struck off in the direction pointed out, and followed a road until dark, when we halted in a small well. wooded valley, watered by a feeder of the Rio Caldo. Here General C. resolved to bivouacque, unless some certain information could be procured respecting the village our brigade was destined to occupy. Being sent forward to reconnoitre, I ascended some winding heights, and after a short search discovered fires in front; on communicating this to the general, he determined moving towards them. About ten o'clock at night, the general, Lieutenantcolonel Alexander Gordon, (unfortunately killed at Talavera) a few other officers, and myself, came within hail, and found they were belonging to a detachment of the foot guards. No person could, however, be found capable of telling the name of the place; and, to increase our disappointment, the writing on the paper, given the general by the quarter-master-generals deputy, (which had originally been made with a black-lead pencil) was no longer legible. In this state of uncertainty the brigade wandered about some considerable time, ere we succeeded in finding cover, which we at last fortuwately procured in a sinall village, and where, being protected from the rain and inclement weather, we lay down for the night, without, however, either rations, or any kind of refreshment. In the morning we quitted the place, without being able to discover the name, as the inhabitants had all fled on our approach, not knowing whether we were friends or foes.

From the above village and those around which our division lay cantoned, to the borough of Ruivaës, (partly burnt by the French in their retreat) the road bordered on rocky precipices, at the bottom of which flowed numerous mountain streams, all of wbich carry, with a very rapid course, their tributary waters to the Rio Cabado. Add to this, the roads are so narrow and rugged that with cunsiderable difficulty four men can move abreast; in many parts they become so straitened three cannot; and withal so rugged, and so cut by the rains, that foot travellers must, during the greater part of the stage, chouse their steps with caution. To persons on horseback, the paths must prove extremely dangerous.

The march from Ruivaes to Ponto de Cabado was, generally speaking, through a more level country, having a road bounded on either side by loose stone walls, beyond which were corn fields; but thence to Salamonde it was over a road extremely rugged and narrow, though its numerous windings Tound the crest of hills offer pleasing views, as during the entire of the way the eye is struck with beautiful scenery, and fertile fields or vallies. Part of the track is said to be the Roman military way, which formerly existed, without any interruption, between Braga and Astorga. From Valarinbo to Salamonde the country people compute the distance VOL. IY. NO, 23.

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Journal of the Eighty-third Regiment.

to be five leagues only. Throughout the entire of this march might be traced the steps of a disappointed and an exasperated enemy: houses destroyed, the rafters, joists, &c. scattered over the fields, the cattle killed, the corn spoiled, the wine houses broken open, the liquor spilt, dead horses, men, &c. still unburied, were objects that presented themselves in every

direction. In one single field, separated from the road by a fence of loose stones, I saw 16 or 17 horses lying dead.

SALAMONDE.-Salamonde itself, a poor village of about 120 houses, was partly destroyed by fire, and entirely bare of furniture; nor was there even on our return above ten persons to be seen within it. Such was the horror entertained of the French, that the peasantry had not yet ventured to leave their hiding places in the mountaius, wbither they had not only themselves taken refuge, but also conveyed their wives, their children, their cattle, their furniture, and other moveables.

The 20th, the brigade reached Guimaraës, where both brigades of the king's Gernian legion infantry had already obtained quarters. The guards returned southwards by way of Braga.

From Salumonde* the route lay over the mountainous defiles opening upon Braga, and by the same old Roman military road for the space of two leagues, when it turned off to the left.

A change of scenery rendered this stage more agreeable; for, uotwithstanding the road lay over maintainous ridges, many beautiful vallies occasionally appeared, and afforded prospects that relieved the eye, too much fatigued by continually contemplating lofty rocks, and snow-capt mountains, where, ia such a hilly district, nothing appears to vary the awful view, save a few vive. yards and meadows, with two or three country houses, surrounded by orchards, or sometimes a cascade filling down the steep craggy sides of the rocks, or pouring through a narrow glen, shaded by trees of forest growth.

The several villages and houses during this stage appeared in a far better state than did those beyond Salamonde. For the French colunins (having each taken a separate route with the idea of ensuring more certainly their subsistence, without detaching very numerous foraging parties) were not tempted to commit such cruel devastation when divided, as they practised when united in one body near Salamonde. The havocks of war, were, however, easily traced; mutilated trees, half-demolished houses, fields of corr trodden down, and wandering houseless peasants too frequently came under observation. To reach Povoa the road ascends a range of heights, whence, by a winding track, we came to the beautiful valley of Guimaraës.

GUIMARAES.-Guimaraës is the chief town of a Comarca, and one of the most respectable boroughs in the kingdom, containing eight convents, four very neat squares, and 5000 inhabitants. The situation is remarkably pleasant. Indeed no spot could be more eligible for local charms. On the

* Route from Salamonde to Guimaraës.-Salamonde to Penedo 1 league, to Egreja 1, to Ponte Nova 1, to Poroa , to Guimaraës 14.- Total 5 leagues,

Journal of the Eighty-third Regiment.

north and south sides the valley is closed by some lofty hills, called the Serra de Santa Maria and the Monte Largo, which form a link between the Serra de Catarina and the Serra de Gerez: to the east and west the valley extends a greater distance: its general width is one and a half, or two miles. Two branches of the river Ave, and the little stream called Arezilla, which flow through it, after fertilizing the soil, join their waters half a mile below the town, on the western side. On the banks of these streams, and indeed throughout the whole valley, grow very luxuriant crops of corus, Indian wheat, &c. Even the very summits of the overhanging heights are covered with orchards, vineyards, &c. and thickly studded with palaces, convents, and country bouses; the whole, when taken together, offering one of the prettiest and finest landscapes the province can boast.

The town is divided into two parts, only one of which had been injured by the French, but this, unfortunately, was by far the most interesting portion; I mean the square, on the north side of which are the walls of the ancient royal palace. It is an antique Moorish kind of castle, flanked with towers, and surrounded by a bigb wall pierced with loop holes, which but for the illtreatment it experienced on the retreat of the enemy, was in tolerable preservation. This structure still bespeaks the persevering industry of the first settlers in this country, and offers a very striking contrast with the idle spirit of its present inhabitants. It was here that Count Henry, the first sovereign of Portugal established his court, and in the vicinity many bloody battles were fought with various success, before and after the independence of Lusitania was firmly established. The trophies of several victories, until very lately, ornamented its principal church. I the upper part of the old town, which is built on a rising ground, Count Henry raised a strong tower, great part of which yet remains; it has a door 25. feet high, and 12 feet wide.

The streets are large, straight, and cleaner than those of Portugal commonly are. Some of the squares are adorned with trees, and almost every one is surrounded by comfortable buildings. The principal square is well paved, having stone slabs fixed to the front of the houses, and also to the church, wbich are used as seats. All the dwelliogs are stuccoed, and most of them have glass windows, which is rather uncommon in this province. In the adjacent villages, the windows are not furnished with glass, nor are any glazed frames to be met with in the other small towns of the district. One half of the town occupies the botiom of the valley, and is termed the New Town: the other half stretches up a hill, and forms & finę amphitheatre; this last part is called the Old Town.

Guimaruës is famous for the siege it successfully withstood against the Castillians in 1125. It is also menorable for the great victory wbicha Alonso the First gained in its environs, over his mother's second husband, Most of the religious establishments here are well endowed, and the buildings are on aạ exteusive and magnificent style. The church of San Michel del Castello is the most ancient in the bishoprick of Braga, but the architecture Journal of the Eighty-third Regiment. is irregular and less dignified than that of the collegiate church of Nossa Senhora d'Oliveira, the appearance of which is grand and striking. The church of St. James was formerly a Roman temple, dedicated to Ceres, The church San Sebastiao bas a handsome front, and its body has some merit. In the principal square is a fountain worthy a stranger's notice, for it has six large mouths, and is surmounted by a bronze sphere gilt, while at the base are a flight of stone steps, on which the town's people seat themselves during the cool of the evenings.

The inhabitants of Guimaraës, on whom we were quartered, appeared truly bospitable. The house whilber my messmate and self went, was inbabited by a priest, who treated us in the inost friendly maduer, made us eat and drink at his table, which was tolerably served, though somewbat in the Portuguese style, for rice and pork formed a large proportion of our fare. We were nevertheless always certain of finding among the different dishes a joint of roast meat, a dish of fish, and a fowl.

The brigade leit Guimaraës' on the 22d, when Brigadier-general Alexander Campbell's, Brigadier-general Richard Stewart's, and Brigadier-general Sonntag's brigades, with ivo brigades of six-pounders also resumed their march south wards. The first half hour's march lay through the beautiful valley of Guis araës, which is surrounded on all sides by heights luxuriantly wooded. The ground on either hand appeared well cultivated; verdant fields, rich meadows, and thick crops of corn every where bedecked the plain. The soad then crossed the river Ave, over which a rude stone bridge had been thrown: it next continued for a quarter of an hour along the banks of that meandering stream, running all that while through a most beautiful country, divided into fields equally luxuriant, and bearing a very great resełnblance, particularly with respect to enclosures, to those in the most agreeable parts of England, especially as the fences were well formed, of neat trimnied hedges, with deep ditches in front of them, From among the bushes sprung a few oak and chesnut ifees, affording a delightful shade from the intense summer-day heat. A rocky bill bordered on the right; to the left was the charming valley through which the road bitherto had passed, but which now ran nearer the skirts. . A half hour's march brought us to a grove of cork trees, on leaving which the road traversed a bridge of similar structure to the former, and shortly after a large straggling village. It next winded along the side of a naked hill, froin whence the country towards Guimaraes afforded the most cbarming prospect. The mountains on the left continued to be delightfully varied; plantations, orchards, vineyards, and gardens, surrounding convents, country-houses, hamlets, &c. thronged from the very bases to their summits, The little river Ave again appeared in the bottom of the valley, and its waters enrich this fine region. PONTE DE SANTADO.—The village of Ponte de Santado is small but agree

* Route.-Guimaraës to Ponte de Santada 15 leagues, to Ponte de Carniçoes $, to Santo Thyrço 1.—Total 3 leaguesia

Journal of the Eighty-thiri: Reginent.

able. A valley equally plasant to that of Guimaraës now appeared on the right, and the lofty grounds enriched by plantations, &c. formed a beautiful ampitheatre. Indeed nature bad bestowed a luxuriant carpet of green, interwoven with numerous flowers, on the whole of the tract between this and Guimarais,

At Santo Thyrço, a small village built on the borders of the river, there is a bridge called Ponte de Cervos, in rear of which some works have been constructed to protect the passage: the most important is a pallisaded bornwork, made of fascines, faced with sods. The convent is a stone building, remarkably extensive, and tolerably well built. It was on the floors and pavement of the corridors that our soldiers passed the night; the officers were better off, being most of them supplied with bedding of one kind or the other.

The water in the river Ave appearing very transparent, and the bed a fine gravelly sand, I took the opportunity of bathing. I had just left the water, when General C. signified a wish for me to proceed onwards to Oporto, whither I accordingly hastened*. The road led through a pleasant valley, abounding in orchards, vineyards, corn-tields, &c. Night overtaking me before I gained Alfevna, it was not until after considerable trouble, and frequent refusal of accommodation from the gentry and peasantry, that I found a lodging for the night. At length I was conducted to an estalagem or inn, at which, though sadly tormented by fleas and bugs, I had a good night's sleep, and about eight o'clock on the following morning entered Oporto.

All the places through which the road passed, or which bordered on it, had the appearance of wealth and comfort. The road itself was good, tolerably broad, and level, though in niany spots very stony. Every part of the country appeared divided into deep vallies, by the great number of streams which descend from the inountainous districts that streich along the river Tamega. Hence these waters have in general a course from the north-east to the south-west, emptying themselves either into the Douro or into the sea.

Though the evemy had so lately been expelled this city, it was easily per. ceived that commerce was reviving. In time of peace this port is very thri. ving, though its chief trade consists in wine; and notwithstanding that, during the revolutionary wars, it suffered severely from the depredations of theenemy's privateers. The neighbourhood of Vigo, in Gallicia, wbere the French at all times found certain refuge, greatly exposed the ships trading with Oporto, especially as the latter barbour (owing to the dangerous entry, and the great surf which breaks on thc bar) is a disadvantageous station for men of war, who sometimes find it impossible to get out; though they often can (wben at anchor before the town) froin the mast bead, discover French privateers cruizing off the river's mouth. Many mercantile houses in Oporto were consequently ruined by the captures the enemy were incessantly making,

Route from Santo Thyrço to Oporto.–Santo Thyrço to Carneiro 1 league, to Alfenna 1, to San Lorenzo 1, to Venda Nova 1, to Oporto do--Total 5 leagues.

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