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veram was entirely out of Baillie's the troops present as for those dirt way, and necessarily led that were expected on the followhim to change his courfe considera ing day ; accompanied with a reably to the westward; but no idea quisition equally urgent, that he has then entertained of any dan-' would use all possible means to obter or difficulty that could occur in tain intelligence of the state and making good the junction. I motions of the enemy. The an.
Under this determination, dis- swer made by this agent of the patches being forwarded to Baillie, Nabob's, is perhaps without a with instructions for the new course parallel upon any fimiliar occasion.. he was, to take, the army was or. He told the general, that he was dered to march from the Mount. under orders to attend him, but Such was the wretched state of that he had no authority to pro. things at this time, that it was cure either provisions or intelliwith the greatest difficulty (after gence. --As ihere was only four a month's preparation or alarm, days provision left, the army had and within fix miles of Madras) no other resource than to encoun. that the general could procure ter the difficulties of the weather eight days rice for the army; and the danger of the enemy's while the collecting of draught- horse, by collecting paddy (as the bullocks was so impracticable, growing rice is called) in the open that the sepoys were obliged to but overflowed surrounded councarry haif this provision on their try. backs. The whole force was only · Hyder Ally, as the general fore. about 6,000 men ; but of these faw, raised the siege of Arcot, were Lord Macleod's and a Com- upon his movement towards Conpany's regiment. of Europeans; jeveram ; but, what had not been befides a company or two of Eu- expected, he threw his army in topean grenadiers, belonging to such a manner across the courie, other regiments, and 300 artil- which Baillie's detachnient were, lery.
making to that place, as to pre: 29th.
They arrived in four vent the intended junction. This " days march at Conjeve- was expected to have taken place ram, being harrassed by the ene- the day after the arrival of the my's horie, which followed and army; but Baillie, before the inhung on all sides of them during tervention of the enemy, was for the way ; but they were much fome days stopped, at no great inore incommoded by the violence distance, by the sudden rising of a of the rains tiran by the enemy; small river in his way. For about . and their condition was not amend. a week after the arrival of the ared by finding the whole country my in the neighbourhood of Conunder water at their arrival. An jeveram, it rained almost conti. officer from the Nabob attended nually by day and night, and the the coming of the army at Conje- waters were out in such a degree, veram, who was to conduct them that they were obliged to change on their way to Arcot. To him the situation of their encampment the general immediately applied to higher ground; whilst the into procure provifions, as 'well for dustry of the troops, in collecting Vol. XXV,
paddy, paddy, and beating the rice from fantry, 12 pieces of cannon, and the straw, 'was no more than luf- 18,000 cavalry, the whole being ficient for their present subsistence. composed of the best troops in his Such was the state of intelligence army, to join the former party under all these difficulties, that, in an united and decisive attack. excepting the accidental report of They encountered Col. Bail- en
oth. a deserter, the first account which lie at a place called Perim. O the general received of Hyder's bancum, where he made the most having quitted his ground before masterly difpofitions to withstand Arcot, of his having crossed the this prodigious superiority of force. river Palaar, and being encamp. After an exceedingly severe and ed within five miles of his front, well-fought action, of several hours
ed was from one of his own continuance, the enemy were Sept. 3d.
Pro We officers, who was out up- routed, and Baillie gained as comon detached service. In two days plete a victory as a total want after, he received intelligence from of cavalry and the smallness of Col. Baillie, of his having at his number could possibly admit. length crossed the river, which had Through these circumstances he so unfortunately barred his paf-, lost his baggage ; and that of a sage.
number of brave men was ineviBut that officer was now doomed table. His whole force did not to meet with more unsurmountable exceed three or four battalions of obstacles. On the day after the sepoys, and from one to two comgeneral had received this advice, papies of European artillery. The the enemy's army made a great event newed the superior excelmovement to the north-east, which lence of those troops. induced Sir Hector Monro to The conqueror now experienced change his position likewise, and a new and strange situation of to advance about two miles, to a things; being reduced to the most high ground on the Trepassore distrefiing circumstances in the road, which was the way that the arms of victory. The English expeeted detachment was to come. camp was within a few miles ; By these movements, the hostile but Hyder's whole army lay full in. camps were brought within two his way; and, if any advantages miles of each other; the enemy were to be derived from his preIving about that distance to the sent post, he could not retain them left of the English. .
through the want of provisions. Hyder's view in this movement, He accordingly dispatched an exwas ia cover and support the great press to the general with an ac- • attack which he intended that count of his situation, stating the day upon Baillie's detachment, loss he had sustained in the late He had already sent his brother action, which rendered him incain-law, Meer Saib, with 8,000 pable of advancing; and the im. horse upon that service; who be- possibility of continuing where he ing gailantly repulsed on the pre, was. He accordingly urged the ceding day, he, immediately after necesity, holding out at the same this movement, detached his son, time the fullest confidence of his Tippoo Saib, with 6,000 regular in. being speedily extricated by the
arrival of the army at Perimban- distinguished merit, appointed with
a strong detachment, composed The general's situation, upon of the flower and most active part this occalion, was undoubtedly of the army, to the relief of Bailvery difficult. He found himself lie. The force upon this expe. in a dilemma, where the hazard dition, consisted of the grenadier and danger were so balanced on and light infantry companies of both sides, that the determination Lord Macleod's highland regiwhich to take, feemed to be a mat. ment, two other companies of ter rather of fortune than of judg. European grenadiers, one comment. The question was, whether, pany of sepoy marksmen, and ten for the purpose of extricating Bail. companies of sepoy grenadiers. lie's detachment, which was to be As their security depended upon considered as a matter of absolute the remoteness and difficulty of Decellity, he should, with the very their way as well as the filence inferior force under his command, and secrecy of their march, Fletchgive Hvder every poflible advan- er refused four fix.pounders which tage over him in a general action, were offered, and set out from the bv advancing with the army into a camp at nine o'clock at night, fiat and open country, where the Though the men left their knapimmense cavalry of the enemy facks behind, it was thought ne could act upon them on every side cessary that they should carry two with the utmost effe&t? or, Whether day's rice, with some biscuit and he should endeavour to attain his arrack, to provide against the peobject at less apparent hazard, by nury at Perimbancum. sending such a reinforcement to Hyder had such excellent in. Baillie as would enable him to telligence in the English camp, push forward to the camp, in dethat he had an early and exact Ipite of the enemy? In the former knowledge not only of the de. care, besides the disadvantage we fign, but of the particular circumhave mentioned, the army must stances relative to Fletcher's dehave abandoned their only pro- tachment; the time, the route, the vision, consisting in a pagoda full number and nature of his troops, of paddy, which they had collected and even their proceeding without since their arrival. This the ene- artillery, were all faithfully commy would immediately have seized, municated by his spies. He ac. as well as the post of Conjeveram, cordingly sent a strong body of and the strong grounds which they forces to intercept and cut off the had quitted. Thus the army would detachment on their way; but have been equally destitute of Col. Fletcher, by a singular sashelter, and exposed to the danger gacity, having conceived some sus, of starving, upon its return from picion of his guides, Suddenly Perimbancum. Nor was the other changed his route, and by a wide part of the alternative without its circuitous sweep, through ricefull share of difficulty, hazard, and fields and swamps to the right, he danger.
by that means, and the cover of This was, however, adopted; the night, evaded the danger. and Çol. Fletcher, an officer of The late defeat of Meer and
Tippoo Tippoo Saib, by a force fo totally · In the mean time the trap was inferior in point of number, had preparing, and laid with no small greatly damped the spirit of the degree of art, ability, and judgMysore army; but the account of ment, for the unfortunate corps Fletcher's junction with Baillie that were under the command of fpread universal dismay through Baillie and Fletcher. The most their camp. The foreign officers covert and difficult ground on the were particularly alarmed. They road which they were to pass, was considered the whole as a masterly occupied and enfiladed by several stroke of generalship, by which batteries of cannon; and as the the army would be enclosed ; and time and circumstances of their being attacked on both sides at march were known, large bodies once, that nothing but ruin could of the best foot in Hyder's army, ensie Under this impression, Col. lay in ambuscade on either fide ; Lallie, with most of the vative he himself, with almost his whole general officers, strongly remon- force, being in readiness to fupftrated with Hyder on the neces- port the attack, While these real fity of immediately breaking up dispositions were making, or taking his camp, and repassing the Pa- effect, which, by degrees, occupied laar, to avoid the immediate dan- all the valuable part of Hyder's ger which they otherwise confi- army, a cloud of irregular cavalry dered as inevitable. Hyder him- were employed in various motions self was undetermined how to act, on the side of Conjeveram, in and seemed to be giving way to order to attract the attention of the general sentiment, when the ar- the English camp. rival of two of his fpies from Con- Just at day-light, ser
light: Sept. 10th. jeveram, suddenly changed the Baillie's corps was per- "P state of things. The assurances ceived by the enemy, advancing given by these, that the English into the very center of the toils army was perfectly quiet in camp, which they had laid for them. and that the smallett preparation They marched in column; and the was not making, nor in fact any first notice they had of their dandesign of a movement entertain- ger, was the opening of a bated, at once determined Hyder's iery of twelve guns, loaded with conduct. The Europcans ftill, to grape shot, which poured in upon a man, held their former opinion. their right flank. In half an hour, They considered the intelligence 57 pieces of cannon were brought as too extraordinary, and even too so to bear, as to penetrate into every near an impossibility, to be at all part of the British line; and by fecredited. They accordingly con- ven o'clock, the aétion was become cluded, that the spies had sold as general as such a handful of Hyder; and that his facility in men, engaged with so vast an hoft, giving way to the deception, had could make it. - Such a confiet has rendered his ruia inevitable. Lal- seldom been heard of; nor will the ly, however, went once more to example render it common in the Hyder, to urge tlfe neceffity of practice. Surrounded and attacksending off, at any rate, the guns ed on all sides by 25,000 cavalry, and infaptry,
by 30 regiments of disciplined
sepov infantry, besides Hyder's position, and seemed entirely to European corps, and a numerous decide the fortune of the day. artillery, generally playing upon Orders were accordingly given to ikein within grape shot distance, Lally to draw off the artillery, vet this invincible column stood and to the cavalry to cover the Erm and updaunted, and repulsed retreat. every charge made by the Mysore At this moment of joy, exultaarmy, with a prodigious slaughter tion, and triumph, as well for un. of their braveit men. Some Eu- hoped deliverance as for victory, ropean gentlemen who were upon on the one side, and of disappointBusiness in Hyder's camp, and ment and dismay on the other, an thereby became spectators of the unforeseen and unavoidable mir. battle, while they beheld with fortune suddenly changed the foradmiration the cool and intrepid tune of the day. countenance preserved by the com- From whatever fatality it promander, and by his unequalled ceeded, the tumbrils which confollowers, were still struck with tained the ammunition, suddenly greater astonishment, in the midst blew up, with two dreadful exof all the tumult and danger of so plofions in the center of the Briunequal a conflict, to see their vari. tith lines. One whole face of their ous evolutions performed with column was entirely laid open, and a precision and steadiness which their artillery overturned and dewould have gained applause in the stroyed. Though the destruction regulated exercises of a field-day of men was great, the total loss of
Col. Baillie had only ten pieces ammunition was still more dread. of cannon; but there were so ex- ful to the survivors. Tippoo Saib cellently served, that they kept instantly caught the moment of up an unremitting fire, and made advantage, and, without waiting great havock among the enemy for orders, fell with the utmost ra- , during the whole engagement. - pidity, at the head of the Mogul After a dubious contest of three and Carnatic horse, into the broken hours, victory began at half past square, which had not yet time in nine o'clock to declare for the any degree to recover its order or English ; the flower of the Mysore form; and the cavalry being speecavalry, after many bloody re- dily followed by the French corps polfes, were at length entirely de- and by the first line of infantry, feated, with great slaughter, and the fate of that gallant band was driven back upon the main body; no longer doubtful. After the and the right wing, composed of prodigies of valour which they had Hyder's best forces, was thrown fo nobly exhibi:ed, the brave feinto disorder, and began to give poys were almost to a man cut to way. Hyder himself, despairing pieces. of keeping his infantry inuch. Col. Baillie, though already selonger in the field, prepared for verely wounded, rallied the Eu. a retreat. A rapid and masterly ropeans, and, under the fire of the movement, from the right to the whole immense artillery of the center, made at the instant by enemy, gained a little eminence, Col. Baillie, confirmed this dil. and forming a new square, these