Page:Battle of Waterloo (2).pdf/12

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

12


came to the spot, the sight was truly shocking : At first there was a dreadful preponderance of British slain, which looked very ill ; but more in advance, the revenge made itself dreadfully marked, for ten, French lay dead for one British. The field was so much covered with blood, that it appeared as if it had been completely flooded with it ; dead horses seemed innumerable ; —-- and the peasantry employed in burying the dead, generally stript the bodies first. Of Course these people got a vast booty, when they returned out of the neighbouring wood, after the battle ; many of them some hundred pounds. A great quantity of cap plates, cuirasses &c. were taken by them and sold as relics.
We returned to the tree, and directed our steps westward, to go along the British line to the right. There was no difficulty in tracing the line by the graves of the brave men who had fallen where they were first posted. The survivors never quitted it, but to advance. The very ground was hallowed ; but it was trode by us with respect and gratitude ; the multitude below, so lately interred, occasioned a very impressive subject of reflection.
No one, who has not seen it, can imagine how touching it was to see, strewed around their graves, fragments of what the brave men wore or carried when they fell. Among the straw of the trodden down corn which still covered the field, lay caps, shoes, pieces of uniforms and shirts, tufts, cockades, feathers, ornamental horse-hair red and black, and what most struck us, great quantities of letters, and leaves of books. The latter were much too far defaced by rain and mud, to make it worth our while to lift any of them. In one letter, we could just make cut the words, so affecting in their circumstances, “My dear husbahd."

| |