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When the Mohawks brought home Poncet, they covertly gave wampum-belts to the Huron chiefs, and invited them to remove to their villages. It was the wolfs invitation to the lamb. The Hurons, aghast with terror, went secretly to the Jesuits, and told them that demons had whispered in their ears an invitation to destruction. So helpless were both the Hurons and their French supporters, that they saw no recourse but dissimulation. The Hurons promised to go, and only sought excuses to gain time.
** Papiers dArgenson. Kebec, 5 Sept., 1658.
 Colden, Five Nations, 80 (1727).
[See larger version]Besides the truths drawn by cross-examination from the witnesses for the slave-dealing merchants, who contended that even Sir William Dolben's Bill would nearly ruin Liverpool, Captain Parry, who had been sent by Pitt to Liverpool to examine some of the slave-ships, brought the directest proofs that the representations of these witnesses were false, and the accommodation for the slaves was most inhuman; Sir William Dolben himself had examined a slave-ship then fitting out in the Thames, and gave details which horrified the House. This Bill went to prohibit any ship carrying more than one slave to a ton of its register; the only matter in which the House gave way was that none should carry more than five slaves to every three tons, and a very few years proved that this restriction had been the greatest boon to the dealers as well as the slaves in the preservation of the living cargoes. The Bill met with some opposition in the Lords, and there Admiral Rodney and Lord Heathfield, both naturally humane men, were amongst its strongest opponents. The measure, however, passed, and received the Royal Assent on the 11th of July. Some well-meaning people thought that by legalising the freightage of slaves, England had acknowledged the lawfulness of the trade; but the advocates of the abolition made no secret of their determination to persevere, and this victory only quickened their exertions.
This most bloody of battles took place on the 7th of September. There were about one hundred and twenty thousand men engaged on each side, and the guns on each side are said to have amounted to one thousand. Before the battle, the priests passed along the ranks of the Russians, reminding them of the wrongs they had suffered, and promising paradise to all that fell. Buonaparte, on his side, issued this proclamation:"Soldiers! here is the battle you have longed for! It is necessary, for it brings us plenty, good winter-quarters, and a safe return to France. Behave yourselves so that posterity may say of you'He was in that great battle under the walls of Moscow.'" It was rather a damping circumstance that the day before the battle Buonaparte received the news of Wellington's victory at Salamanca. The battle commenced at seven o'clock in the morning, and continued the greater part of the day, the Russians, even to the newest levies, fighting with the most immovable courage. Buonaparte demanded of Caulaincourt whether the Russians were determined to conquer or die? He replied that they had been fanaticised by their leaders, and would be killed rather than surrender. Buonaparte then ordered up every possible gun, on his plan of battering an army as he would batter a fortress. Still the Russians fought on furiously, and Berthier urged him to call up his "young Guard." But he replied, "And if there is another battle to-morrow, where is my army?"
The Russians were seen to be falling back as they advanced, and Buonaparteimpatient to overtake and rout thempushed forward his troops rapidly. On reaching the river Wilna it was found to be swollen by the rain, and the bridges over it were demolished; but Buonaparte ordered a body of Polish lancers to cross it by swimming. They dashed into the torrent, and were swept away by it almost to a man, and drowned before the eyes of the whole army. On the 28th of June, however, Napoleon managed to reach Wilna, which Barclay de Tolly had evacuated at his approach, and there he remained till the 16th of July, for he had outmarched his supplies, few of his waggons having even reached the Niemen, owing to the state of the country through which they had to be dragged, and the Russians had taken care to carry off or destroy all provisions for man and horse as they retreated. His vast host began, therefore, at once to feel all the horrors of famine, and of those other scourges that were soon to destroy them by hundreds of thousands. Meanwhile, the mission of the Abb de Pradt to Poland had failed. The abb, believing in the reality of the promises of Buonaparte, had faithfully executed his mission. The Poles met in diet at Warsaw, and expressed their gratitude to the Emperor for his grand design of restoring their nation. The country was all enthusiasm, and a host of soldiers would soon have appeared to join his standard, when Napoleon returned them an evasive answer, saying that he could not do all that he wished, as he was under engagement to Austria not to deprive her of Galicia. As to the provinces held by Russia, he assured them thatprovided they showed themselves brave in his cause"Providence would crown their good cause with success." This positive information regarding Austriathis vague statement regarding Russia, at once showed the hollow hypocrisy of the man, and from that moment all faith was lost in him in Poland. To have restored Poland was in the power of Buonaparte, and would have been the act of a great man; but Buonaparte was not a great man, morally: he could not form a noble designhe could form only a selfish one. But he immediately felt the consequences of his base deceit. The Poles remained quiet; nor did the people of Lithuania respond to his calls on them to rise in insurrection against Russia. They saw that he had intended to deceive the Poles, and they felt that, should he make peace with Russia, he would at once sacrifice them. They were about to form a guard of honour for him, but they instantly abandoned the design; and thus his miserable policy destroyed all the effect which he contemplated from the action of the nations on the Russian frontiers. to consider the question of reconstructing it, as it was in