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through mildness and conciliation,
Address of the Directory to the French Armies.—Determination to carry the JP'ar into Italy.—Difficulties to be encountered in carrying this Plan into Execution.—Buonapartc.—The French Army, under his Command, makes rapid Progress in Italy.—The Austrians, under General Beaulieu, conJiantly repulsed, yet not dispirited.—P'arious A&ions.—Suspension of Arms agreed on between the French and Piedmontese Armies.—General Beaulieu re-crosses the Po, for covering the Countries to the North of that River.—At Paris, Negociation for Peace between the King of Sardinia and the French Republic.—Treaty of Peace between France and Sardinia ratified by the Legislative Bodies of France.—Exultation and Considence of the French.-Improved by Buonaparte, for the Purpose of leading on the Army to farther Exploits.-Address to the Army.—General Object and Tendency of Buonaparte's private Conversation.—Homage paid to the Merit of Buonaparte and the Army, by the Directory.—Buonaparte puts his Army in Motion.—Crosses the Po, and leaves General Beaulieu to break *p his Camp. —Armistice between the French Army and the Duke of Parma. —The French advance toward the Capital of Lombardy.—Battle of Lodi.The Austrians retreat to Mantua.-The French proceed to Milan, where
the preceding, that many people in
the various exploits they had performed in the two foregoing years, the patience with which they had borne not only the hardships of the field, but the pressures of want, and the privation of every convenience and comfort, and the invincible fortitude with which they had persified, amidst all these difficulties, to discharge the duties of brave soldiers. It exhorted them to persevere as they had done: fresh toils and victories were expected from them by their country, before its enemies would consent to reasonable terms of peace. It held out the most flattering hopes of success; and that they were at the eve of terminating their patriotic labours, the issue of which would procure safety to their country, and glory to themselves; who then would return to its bosom, to enjoy the love and gratitude so justly due to them from their fellowcitizens, and so nobly earned by their services. * - This address was sent to all the military bodies of the republic, and read to them with great solemnity. It was received with much respect and satisfaction. The officers and soldiers formally renewed their assurances of fidelity to the republic, and their readiness to lay down their Iives in its defence. The object which the directory had now chiefly in contemplation was to carry the war into Italy. The Austrians were prepared to pass the Rhine in great force: the attachment of the Belgians to their French conquerors might waver; the fate of another campaign was uncertain; much was to be lost, nofiling gained, in the Netherlands, by an appeal to arms, on a question, which, if the authority of the repubic should be confirmed by the
lapse of even a few years, they might consider as already decided. In this situation of affairs they determined to divert the energy and attention of the emperor from his Belgian territories, where his authority had been so often disputed, to his Italian dominions, where his will was a law, and from whence he drew still greater supplies. While they cut off the emperors resources in Italy, they would add to their own. They did not doubt of reaping immense benefit from the possession of that country, the inhabitants of which were known generally to have little affection for their o sovereigns. The people of the duchies of Milan, Parma, and Modena, were peculiarly disaffected, and, the nobility and clergy excepted, seemed rather to desire, than to dread, a change of masters. The commonalty, in the republics of Venice and Genoa, professed no attachment to their rulers. In Tuscany, and the papal dominions, there were numbers of discontented; and in the kingdom of Naples the number was still
places and employments in their service.
Induced by these various motives,
the directory resolved to begin military operations abroad, with the attack of a country, where the princes, one excepted, the king of Sardinia, could place little reliance on the loyalty of their subjects; and where this prince had already lost such a portion of his territories, as greatly endangered the remainder. Nevertheless, obstacles of a serious nature presented themselves. The undertaking was, indeed, arduous. Italy, proverbially the grave of the French, was viewed by the generality of people as unconquerable on the fide of France. Environed by mountains, the passes of which were fortified with the utmost art, and guarded with numerous well-disciplined troops, it seemed
ance. The French, after reducing many forts and fortresses in the heart of the Alps, had not been able to make an effectual impression on Piedmont, without which an entrance into Italy appeared impracticable. The powers interested in the preservation of Italy, aware of the hos. tile intentions of France, had made ample preparations for defence. The emperor's forces amounted to eighty thousand well-disciplined men, commanded by excellent officers and generals, and provided with every species of warlike necessaries. The king of Sardinia's army was fixty thousand strong, exclusive of militia. . The pope and the king of Naples were occupied in embodying as many troops as their circumstances would permit; and the latter had dispatched two or three
The supplies of men and ammu
nition did not arrive till the beginning of April, when the French determined immediately to commence their operations. They were cantoned along the coast of that sea, called the river of Genoa, within three leagues of that city; and the Austrians and Piedmontese were posted on the mountains opposite to them. The French were commanded by general Buonaparte, already noticed in the action between the conventional troops and the sections of Paris,” in October, 1795, a native of Corsica, born, as it were, a commander, and uniting the intrepidity of an ancient Roman, with the subtlety and contrivance of a modern Italian; and both these fortified and improved by a liberal, as well as military, education. Hardly thirty years of age, he had signälized his military abilities, not only on that but some other very decifive occasions, and acquired a reputation that had raised him to the highest degree of esteem in his profession.
rally from the disorder into which they had been thrown. They advanced in confiderable force, and charged the French with great vigour. The dispute was long and bloody: the Austrians and Piedmontese made repeated efforts to liberate the troops in the castle, and directed their attacks on the centre of the French: but these stood their ground immoveably, while their two wings turned the right and left of the adverse army, the rear of which was affailed at the same time by another divifion. Surrounded in this unexpected manner, they sustained a dreadful defeat; two thousand were slain in the action, and upwards of eight thousand made prisoners, including the corps under general Provara, which had so much distinguished itself by the defence of the castle. This great vićtory was obtained on the fourteenth of April. Among the killed were some officers of high distinction; and of the taken one was a general, and near thirty colonels, beside inferior officers. Between twenty and thirty cannon fell into the hands of the French, with fifteen standards, and an immense quantity of stores and field-equipage. Two French generals, Banal and Quanin, fell in this battle, which cost the victors a number of their bravest men. Though twice defeated in so decifive a manner, general Beaulieu was by no means dispirited : collecting as many of his scattered troops, as formed a body of seven thousand men he again attacked the French with great impetuofity, the next morning, and drove them from their incampment at a village called Dego, where they had exH. to repose themselves after the atigues of the preceeding day. This - - unoX