Page images

“My attention to the left will not permit me to be very exact with regard to every circumstance which passed in the centre, much less to the right; but it is most certain that the enemy formed in good order, and that their attack was very brisk and animated on that side. Our troops reserved their fire till within forty yards, which was so well continued, that the enemy everywhere gave way. It was there our general fell, at the head of Braggs' and of the Louisbourg grenadiers, advancing with their bayonets. About the same time Brigadier-general Monkton received his wound at the head of Lascelles'. In the front of the opposite battalions fell also Monsieur Montcalm ; his second in command has since died of his wounds on board our fleet. Part of the enemy made a second faint attack; part took to some thick copse-wood, and seemed to make a stand.

“ It was at this moment that each corps seemed to exert itself with a view to its own particular character. The grenadiers, Braggs', Lascelles', pressed on with their bayonets. Brigadier Murray, advancing the troops under his command briskly, completed the rout on his side ; when the Highlanders, supported by Anstruther's, took to their broad-swords and drove part into the town, part to their works at the bridge on the river St. Charles,"

Quebec capitulated a few days after this victory. In the subsequent year the Marquis de Vaudreuil surrendered with the remainder of the French army at Montreal, and Canada became an English colony. The joy which this event—the most brilliant achievement of the war-diffused, was much subdued by the death of the young officer who planned the attack, and who lived only long enough to hear that his plans were successful.

The state of the public mind at the time was well described by Goldsmith.

“ Amidst the clamour of exulting joys

Which triumph forces from the patriot heart,
Grief dares to mingle her soul-piercing voice,

And quells the raptures which from pleasure start.
Oh Wolfe! to thee a streaming flood of woe

Sighing we pay, and think e’en conquest dear;
Quebec in vain shall teach our breasts to glow,

Whilst thy sad fate extorts the heart-wrung tear.
“ Alive, the foe thy dreadful vigour fled,

And saw the fall with joy-pronouncing eyes ;
Yet they shall know thou conquerest the dead,

Since from thy tomb a thousand heroes rise."
Nor was sympathy for a gallant enemy wanting. As the

shouts of his triumphant soldiers were borne towards him, the English general declared that he died contented.—“I am glad of it;" exclaimed M. de Montcalm, when the surgeon pronounced his wound mortal, “I shall not witness the surrender of my troops." A column has been recently erected in the Upper Town of Quebec, to the memory of both these brave officers“ to Wolfe and Montcalm” a just tribute of respect to their patriotism and virtue, and an emblem of the mixed feeling that prevails in the province. It bears the following inscription :






THE QUEEN'S COURT AND HOUSEHOLD. 1. Notitia Imperii Romani.-(A Royal or rather Imperial

Kalendar of the Roman Empire, being a list of the seve

ral civil and military magistrates and officers*. 2. The Pictorial History of England. Vol. i. London,

C. Knight & Co., 1838. 3. The Official Kalendar for 1831. By John BURKE, Esq.,

author of“ A Dictionary of the Peerage and Baronetage.'

London, 1831. 4. The Royal Kalendar for the year 1838. 5. The Glory of Regality : an Historical Treatise of the anoint

ing and crowning of the Kings and Queens of England. By Arthur Taylor, Fellow of the Society of Anti

quaries. London, 1820. 6. Chapters on Coronations ; comprising their Origin, Nature

and History. London, 1838. 7. Regal Records ; or, a Chronicle of the Coronations of the

Queens Regnant of England. By J. R. PLANCHÉ,
F.S.A., author of the “ History of British Costume," &c.

London, 1838. The commencement of a new reign, with an approaching coronation, seems a not unfit occasion for a few remarks on the subject of the Royal Household, of which, though now it may seem to lead to an inquiry rather curious than important, nevertheless, as it originally comprehended the whole machinery of the Government, including the legislative and judicial as well as administrative establishments, some accurate knowledge is more necessary than is commonly imagined to the full comprehension, not only of the nature of the English Government, but of the whole structure of modern European society. In the following article we shall make use of an investigation in Chapter III. Book III. of the Pictorial History of England at present in course of publication, which has thrown quite a new light upon one part of the subject.

In the first ages after the Conquest, the business of the state, both administrative and judicial, and, indeed, legislative

* The best edition is that with the Commentary of Pancirolus, given in vol. vii. of the Roman Antiquities of Grævius. VOL. VII.-No XIII,


too,—for in the early stages of society the judicial and legislative are not very distinctly separated,—was performed by the great officers of the king's court or household. This was called the Curia Regis, literally the king's court, council or senate; and there appears to be little or no foundation for the supposition that this was a different body from what is termed by old writers the Commune Concilium, the Common Council of the realm. In order fully to understand the composition of the above courts or council, it is necessary to trace the thing to its primary elements. The Anglo-Normans borrowed from the Normans, the Normans from the Franks; and the Franks, in addition to what they had of their own, borrowed, probably, something from the courts of the Roman emperors.

If they took at least in part the idea of that complex gradation of offices from the Roman empire, they did not retain, in all respects, the same order of the scale which prevailed under the empire, as made known to us by that curious document called Notitia Imperii, a species of Imperial Kalendar, containing a list of the various officers and magistrates. For instance, according to that document, which is of about the same date with the Theodosian Code, the first officer of the empire was the Præpositus sacri cubiculi, (the Great Chamberlain,) while the Comes castrensis (Count of the palace or household,) held a rank subordinate not only to him, but to other officers; whereas, among the Franks, the highest officer in power, as in dignity, was, as the name implies, the grand seneschal, corresponding to the Comes castrensis above named.

But we incline to think it may be a question whether the Gothic monarchs had any regard at all to the empire in the formation of their scale of offices. Besides that the order of the scale, as well as the offices, is essentially different from the imperial; even the Latin names which they gave to the offices are quite different from the names in the Notitia Imperii Romani. The reader will perceive this at once by comparing the following list of officers from the Notitia with the lists which will be given presently of the officers of the household of the Anglo-Norman kings. We follow M. Guizot's * arrangement, who says: “I have taken for the basis of this “ table the empire of the East, more complete and better “ known; taking care to indicate here and there the circum“ stances which distinguish the empire of the West.”

* Cours d'Histoire Moderne, tom. iv. p. 213. Also the Notitia with Pancirolus's Commentary, in volume vii. of the Roman Antiquities of Grævius.

IMPERIAL COURT. I. Præpositus sacri cubiculi. Great Chamberlain. Under him were the following: 1. Primicerius sacri cubiculi. First Chamberlain. He

was at the head of all those who served the emperor

in his apartments. 2. Comes castrensis palatii (maire du palais). Count of

the palace or household. A sort of steward who su

perintended the imperial table, cuisine, &c. Under him were:

1. Primicerius mensarum, the chief of those who, when

the emperor travelled, went before to make prepa

ration for him on his route. 2. Primicerius cellariorum, chief of those employed in

the kitchens and offices. 3. Primicerius pædagogiorum, chief of the young pages

educated for service in the interior of the palace. 4. Primicerius lampadariorum, chief of those who su

perintended the lighting of the palace. 3. Comes sacræ vestis, count of the sacred wardrobe, i.e.

master of the robes. 4. Chartularii cubiculi, secretaries of the chamber. Al

though occupied with public business, they were under the superintendence of the Præpositus sacri cubiculi, because their service was personal, or they were

considered as the private secretaries of the emperor. 5. Decuriones III, silentiariorum, whose business was to

prevent noise in the palace. 6. Comes domorum per Cappadociam, the superintendant

of the property of the emperor in Cappadocia, which

was very considerable. II. Comites domesticorum equitum peditumque, counts of the

cavalry and infantry of the palace, i.e. commanders of the emperor's life or body guards.

« PreviousContinue »