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ments with a word of his pen, and scatter them again with the breath of his mouth? Reduce to subjection a warlike and discontented nation, by means of a mutinous army? Command a mutinous army, by means of factious and seditious officers? Be humbly and daily petitioned, that he' would be pleased, at the rate of millions a year, to be hired as master of those who had hired him before, to be their servant? Have the estates and lives of three nations as much at his disposal, as was once the little inheritance of his father, and be as noble and liberal in the spending of them? And, lastly, (for there is no end of enumerating every particular of his glory,) with one word, bequeath all this power and splendour to his posterity? Die possessed of peace at home and triumph abroad? Be buried among kings, and with more than regal solemnity; and leave a name behind him, not to be extinguished but with the whole world; which, as it was too little for his praise, so might it have been for conquests, if the short line of his mortal life could have been stretched out to the extent of his inmortal designs.
DEVASTATION OF THE CARNATIC.
Extract from a Speech of Mr. Burke on the Nabob of Arcot's Debts, delivered Feb. 28, 1785.
WHEN at length Hyder Ali found that he had to do with men, who either would sign no convention, or whom no treaty and no signature could bind, and who were the determined enemies of human intercourse itself, he decreed to make the country, possessed by these incorrigible and predestinated criminals, a memorable example to mankind. resolved, in the gloomy recesses of a mind capacious of such things, to leave the whole Carnatic an everlasting monument of vengeance, and to put perpetual desolation as a barrier between him and those, against whom the faith which holds the moral elements of the world together, was no protection. He became at length so confident of his force, so collected in his might, that he made no secret whatsoever of his dreadful resolution.
Having terminated his disputes with every enemy, and every rival, who buried their mutual animosities in their common detestation against the creditors of the nabob of Arcot, he drew from every quarter whatever a savage ferocity could add to his new rudiments in the arts of destruction; and compounding all the materials of fury, havoc, and desolation, into one black cloud, he hung for awhile on the declivities of the mountains. Whilst the authors of all these evils were idly and stupidly gazing on this menacing meteor, which blackened all their horizon, it suddenly burst, and poured down the whole of its contents upon the plains of the Carnatic. Then ensued a scene of wo, the like of which no eye had seen, no heart conceived, and which no tongue can adequately tell. All the horrors of war before known or heard of, were mercy to that new havoc. A storm of universal fire blasted every field, consumed every house, destroyed every temple. The miserable inhabitants flying from their flaming villages, in part were slaughtered: others, without regard to sex, to age, to the respect of rank, or sacredness of function, fathers torn from children, husbands from wives, enveloped in a whirlwind of cavalry, and amidst the goading spears of drivers, and the trampling of pursuing horses, were swept into captivity, in an unknown and hostile land. Those who were able to evade this tempest, fled to the walled cities. escaping from fire, sword, and exile, they fell into the jaws of famine.
For eighteen months, without intermission, this destruction raged from the gates of Madras to the gates of Tanjore; and so completely did these masters in their art, Hyder Ali, and his more ferocious son, absolve themselves of their impious vow, that when the British armies traversed, as they did, the Carnatic for hundreds of miles in all directions, through the whole line of their march they did not see one man, not one woman, not one child, not one four-footed beast of any description whatever. One dead, uniform silence reigned over the whole region.
Now stir the fire, and close the shutters fast,
Fast bound in chains of silence, which the fair,
Its fluctuations, and its vast concerns?
He climbs, he pants, he grasps them! At his heels,
And with a dexterous jerk soon twists him down,
While fields of pleasantry amuse us there
"T is pleasant, through the loopholes of retreat,
The tumult, and am still. The sound of war
I LOVE thee, mournful, sober-suited night,
From the Tragedy of Jane Shore.-Rowe.
LORD HASTINGS AND THE DUKE OF GLOSTER.
The State is out of tune; distracting fears,
Lewd railings, and reproach on those that rule,
If in good days, like these, the headstrong herd
Because the reins of power are held too slack,
Has worn a face of mercy more than justice.