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able comment on the phrase “ ancient allies,” among them; and they even appear to consider
as applied in our King's speech to Turkey, their establishment in Europe as nothing more Military Reflections on Turkey. By Baron than is to be discovered in all our late par- than an encamprent. We may therefore Von Valentini, Major-General in the Prus- liamentary disquisitions on those words. A easily conceive that they do not enter the field sian Service. 8vo. pp. 102. , London, 1823. peace with the Turks (says he) is, in renlity, against Russia with that joyful ardour which C. and J. Rivington.
nothing more than a truce concluded for a is inspired by a presentiment of victory. The Tuis very apposite and well-timed production certain number of years; and however futile great disadvantage of their relative position is translated by a Military Officer from the 3d this distinction inay appear at first sight, it with Russia appears from the fact, that since volume of Baron Von Valentini's Treatise on possesses, nevertheless, a deep meaning. The the time of Peter the Great, they have never the Art of War ; a work, we believe, of high followers of Mahomet are bound, in conformity been the aggressors in any war with that reputation upon the continent, as, the author to the precepts of that prophét and those of power.": is a commander of much experience and con- Osman, the founder of the Turkish empire, to After discussing 'sundry military matters, siderable distinction. Indeed, we are informed carry on a continual war with the nations such as the formation of squares, the use of by the preface, that “the most striking and which do not share in their belief. The cres- artillery and cavalry, &c. the Baron observes : interesting feature in the wars of the Turkscent, a significant emblem, must extend itself –“ Since the only superiority which the is the singularity of their movements, their over the whole terrestrial globe. All must Turks may still retain over us in the field tactics
, and general military character ; of acknowledge it or submit to it. Hence the consists in the use of the sword, it is natural which a correct conception 'may be formed Turks have never denied, as Christian con- enough that they should always seek out our from the description given by the baron, querors have done, that the possession of cavalry, and charge it in preference to our whose experience, derived from actual service towns and provinces, which the fate of war batteries and squares. The cavalry should, in Turkey, has enabled him to note down and had given them, was only a point d'appui for therefore, never be left exposed, entirely by collect such facts relative to the national cha- marching with greater security to new con- itself, to such an attack, but always have its racter and the peculiar features of the country, quests ; and it is to the religious observation of front and flanks protected by the fire from the as are calculated to supply all the information this national law that we must attribute their batteries and squares.” we can require respecting the Ottomans in a aggrandisement as we must also their decline, And again-"The use of the sahre is founded military point of view; and it is upon this to the laxity of priuciples which took place at a partly on the quality of the weapon itself, and experience, and his perfect knowledge of the later period."
partly on their what may be termed national art of war, that the baron has founded his One of the great defences of Constantinople dexterity in handling it. The Turkish sabre, paapsed strategical dispositions for a future seems hitherto to have been the extraordinaryvbich is wrought out of fine iron-wire, in the terasion and conquest of Turkey. Tlus con- ravages which disease anakes on bostik armies hand of one of our powerful labourers, would kderation has indeed the translator to omit in Turkey. “ If (observes Baron V. we are perhaps freak.co
pieces, like glás at the first the details of the last Turkish wars, which fortunate enough not to be attacked by the blow. The Turk, on the contrary, who gives would certainly possess little or no attraction plague in the countries of the Lower Daimbe, rather a cut than a blow, makes it penetrate for the generality of readers, and which, be- we cannot escape other evils. The heat of the through helmet, cuirass, &c. and separates in a sides would have required several illustrative climate, the burning aridity of the day, the moment the head or the limbs from the body. plates
, and have thus consideralily delayed the dew, and the coolness of the nights, besides the Hence we seldom hear of slight wonnds in an publication of the more interesting selection privation of wholesome water, the springs fail- action' of cavalry with Turks. It is a wellfram the original work. Though these pages ing, and the rivulets almost dried up ; all these known fact in the Russian army, that a colonel,
e addressed more particularly to military causes combined produce dysentery, intermit- who was in front of his regiment, secing the zen, it is presumed they will be found not de- tent and putrid fever, and fill the hospitals Spaltis make an unexpected attack upon him, raid of interest in a political point of view. If with crowds of sick, whio quickly perish. The drew his sahre, and was going to command his the author's views be correct, it is evident losses which the Austrian army, in its last war men to do the same, when, at the first word that the whole of Turkey in Europe, and of a against the Turks, experienced, through these draw, his head was severed from his hody. considerable portion of Asia, may become an diseases, are incredible. The Russian troops The highly tempered Turkish sabres will fetch air prey to Russia, provided adequate means likewise have always suffered more from this a price of from ten to a hundred ducats, even be brought into the field, and her armies be scourge than from the arms of the enemy, but when they are not of fine metal. But, as conducted with energy and skill: but these never in the same proportion as the Germans.” Scanderbeg said, such a sabre only produces its sace riews also necessarily indicate both the The difference of their food is assigned as the effect when in the hand
him who knows weak and the strong points of the Turks, and probable cause of this ; and also the difference how to use it. It is related, that at the storm. avasquently enable us to conclude, in some of clothing,--the Russians being better pro- ing of Ismael, a brave foreigner, who served as degre, upon the measures which it might be- tected from the effects of climate than
the finer- a volunteer in the Russian army, and who was caze necessary to adopt for operating a diver- dressed Austrian. It is suggested, that rations most actively engaged in the mêlée, broke in son in favour of the latter, should a well-con- of vinegar might be advantageously given to pieces several Turkish sabres, and constantly certad policy of Western Europe require that soldiers engaged in a campaign of this kind. armed himself with a fresh one, taken from the the sublime Porte be upheld and maintained, For some of the foregoing and other reasons, Turks who were slain. The substance from as a barrier against any farther extension to the Baron goes on to say,
which these valuable sabres are wrought is wards the south of the already overgrown
“Russia is the most formidable enemy of the called taban, and they are proved to be genuine
Turks, not only from her actual superiority, when they admit of being written upon with With this preliminary, we, who are neither but from the opinion generally entertained a ducat or any other piece of fine gold." sdiers nor judges of the art of war, must do among that people. In conformity with an The next subject of interest of which the our best to possess our readers with’ what ap- ancient prophecy, the Turks consider it as Baron treats is the Theatre of War
, chiefly par to us to be the most important points in doomed by their immutable destiny, that they from the Pruth and Danube to the Dardanelles de general's inquiry ; and if we fail in con will
be driven out of Europe by a neighbour and sea of Marmora." Without entering upon durting onr line to the conquest of Constanti- ing people, whom they believe to be the Ruszapople, it is only what many abler leaders have sians, and whose sovereign will enter their understanding the subject which we have derivan rroin
we great assistance eine before us. It is curious, however, in the capital in triumph. The idea of returning, at the last No. of Sidney falls New Atlas: Tay Tacikist of thing diset, to remark, that the Frussian writer fur- some future period, to Asia, whence they came, in every step even better than on his qwp abridgecatuloy
in Europe, followed vities
, by anticipation, a much more remark. lis tolerably familiar to the most enlightened and plans
the details, we may shortly state, that the Turks carry on their operations, in conformity more especially as the Turks no longer brir streams which fall into the Danube present with their cautious system, is as follows: they such large armies into the field as they used f great obstacles to an invading force; and that select upon the road, along which they wish to do; and the modern organisation of Ėuropea the badness of the few roads, and the moun- advance, an advantageous post, and entrench troops, of which a well-instructed infantry cor tainous nature of the country (both on the themselves; then they call in reinforcements, stitutes the principal force, renders the corroute by Nissa and Sophia, and on that by and wait to be attacked. If they are not at. trast still more favourable for the Christian Shumla), between the Danube and Adria- tacked, they advance again, after a lapse of In order that the principal army may, upe nople, also interpose many difficulties in the time, to another favourable post, which they the day of battle, have its 50,000 men a way of an approach to the capital of the Otto- never fail to entrench, even though they should sembled at one point, we must add to th man Porte.
But, on the other hand, the only occupy it for one night. But they remain number 30,000 more, for the detached cor knowledge of the art of war, the supply and for days, and even weeks, in deliberation whe- upon the coast and the reserve division, whi management of large armies, the system of ther to advance further. If, however, time is makes altogether 80,000 men. advancing without regard to fortresses or places allowed them, they are sure to approach so operating upon Adrianople ought to amou in the rear, which can be controlled by divisions near, and place themselves in such a manner, to 30,000 men, besides a division as an a left for that purpose, have made wonderful pro- as to offer considerable annoyance; and we are vanced guard, and another as a reserve; alt gress among the European powers ; while among finally compelled to attack them in their own gether about 60,000 men ; whence the to the Turks they have either been stationary or entrenchments.”
force to be employed in crossing the Balk have retrograded. “ It is evident, (says the au- Having now, by condensation and juxta- would be 140,000 men. In order, however, thor) from a review of the last war between the position, placed the able author's principal secure the rear, and to observe, and gradua Porte and Russia, that the Turks of the pre- general views of Turkish warfare before the capture, those places on the Danube of whi sent day only differ from those we have de- public, we are sure we shall be excused from the Turks may still be in possession, 60,0 scribed in the preceding chapter, in so far as entering upon a task for which we confess men more will be required, which, as soon they have retrograded still more than their our unfitness, – that of offering any opinion these places are taken, will follow as an arı predecessors; and that much of what we learn upon his proposed strategical operations for of reserve--and firmly establish, and even of their present contest with the Greek insur- the invasion and conquest of Turkey. Suffice store, should it at any time be lost, the co gents, and of what a not distant future seems it to state, that he considers Shumla (about munication with the main army operating to promise, may be attributed to this degene- 227 miles from the capital, on the ordinary front. With these 200,000 men, whose num racy.
In general, the defence road taken by couriers and travellers to Con- must be recompleted before the end of the ca of towns is the only part of the art of war in stantinople,) to be the gate of the Balkan paign, there can be no doubt that an act which the Turks still maintain their ancient mountains, and the Thermopylæ of the Turks. general, superior to the prejudices of forn national bravery.
Their actual Here the vizier has always fixed his camp, and times, will accomplish the conquest of Turi luxury in point of arms, will always render an beyond it the Russians have never penetrated. in Europe, if not in the first, certainly in assault one of great bloodshed and danger. Should a Russian army (he continues, after second campaign. Every Turk, when properly armed, carries describing the road between Shumla and Ad. “ The road which leads directly to the he with him, besides his musket, at least one pair rianople,) design to carry on, with vigour, a of the empire is always the shortest and of pistols, a sabre, and a long and somewhat war of invasion into the heart of the Ottoman best; whence the one to Constantinople ou curved dagger or knife, (the inward curve hav- empire, there is no doubt that it would choose to be preferred to a more circuitous one, et ing the sharp edge) called a kinsehal, which this road as its line of operations. It is obvious, though the latter should seem to lead wit he uses principally in cutting off heads. This however, that it would be previously necessary greater degree of certainty to the conquest weapon, which is about two feet long, is not to beat, or turn by manæuvring, the Turkish the Ottomans. At the same time, the is unlike the Roman short sword; and at the army, which we must always expect to find naturally presents itself, that previously to 1 brilliant era of the Ottomans, it may have been posted at Shumla. The Russian general, Ka- attack upon Constantinople, a landing sho proved not less formidable in the mělée than minsky, failed in both attempts in the campaign be effected in Asia Minor,--a measure stric was the latter, with which the legions snbdued of 1810. The latter, however, would certainly conformable to military principles, since the world. Hence it is very evident that, in be attended with much greater chance of suc. would prevent the escape of the grand seig scaling a rampart, the European soldier, with cess, if, while the main army menaced the into that country with his treasures, wh his musket and fixed bayonet, is placed under Turks in front, and took advantage of every ought to serve as an indemnity for the great disadvantage against an enemy so well favourable opportunity for attack or annoy. penses of the war. When, therefore, armed both for attack and defence. With re. ance, another corps were to cross the Danube at army advances upon the capital by Adriano gard to the art of fortification among the Nicopoli or Rutschuk, and march, by Timowa, the flotilla, which has co-operated in a para Turks, little can be said in its praise. They directly upon Adrianople. Upon this road direction along the coast, will pass over to have no idea of a regular system either of bas. across the Balkan, which, though actually ex. Asiatic side, and disembark troops whereve tions or of lines, of outworks and covered ways, isting, is very rarely used, all that the army may be found practicable ; and the first og nor of conforming the height of the works to the would have to encounter would be natural pation of these will be to secure the landi nature of the ground in front.” In other re-obstacles, which, with the assistance of some place by suitable entrenchments. A suffic spects: “Asa proof of their utter ignorance of the hundreds of pioneers attached, the advanced number
of ships of war, equipped in the p art of war, we need only advert to their sending guard might be easily overcome.” For many of the Black Sea, must of course make cavalry where infantry alone can be of service ; reasons, “the spring (April, for there is no the entrance into the Bosphorus, and pro for instance, into a wood in their front, as the pasturage before), and the commencement of the landing. Though the defence of the co grand vizier did at Shumla, where they even summer, are the most convenient time for a is represented as being badly organised by fired upon it with their pistols. Their infantry vigorous campaign in this country.”
Turks, still the outlet from the Black s is only an accessory, and serves to receive their Having got to Adrianople, a strong division said to be the best defended. But the i cavalry upon its falling back, after having made of reserve must be there maintained — “ to recent descriptions only mention the two a charge. At Shumla, the janissaries would organise the country in rear of the army, and castles, Rumili-Hissar and Anadoli - Hi certainly not have moved out of the camp, if to occupy with detachments the towns of Phi- constructed under Mahomet II., the one the thickness of the bushes, among which it lippopolis, Lofscha, Sophia, &c. either by force the European, and the other upon the As was quite impossible that cavalry could act, had of arms or pacific negotiations; in both of coast.
These castles could not inflict r not rendered their doing so a matter of neces- which the most valuable assistance might be injury upon the ships of war, and might e sity. What is said by an experienced officer, expected from the numerous Greek population be silenced by the superior fire of the la who was for a long time employed against the in these places, and from the co-operation of and all the coast-batteries would soon be tu Turks, of their attacks, and of the composition the Servians." 'And, adds our apparently com- by the troops, after a sufficient number had of their army, seems to be well founded : ' Fore- petent authority, “with regard to the force landed. most in the fight come the brave and the infu- necessary to be employed in a similar invasion,
* But a most important objeet will i riated, who, without any reflection, rush upon I am of opinion that less importance is to be the enemy; then follow the prudent, who first attached to the numerical strength of the army • " Although well-informed travellers assert that t see how the affair
is likely to turn out; and destined to enter the campaign, than to the tent of these treasures is a mere fable, still the well-at lastly, the rabble, who do nothing but plunder keeping it constantly in a complete state. The other satraps of the Turkish empire, leads us to con
extraordinary wealth of the greater part of the pash the dead, and cut off heads after a victory maximum of fifty thousand men in open field with good reason, that the riches of the sultan m but who, in case of a defeat, are the first to of battle, fixed by Montecuculi, as already men-grandees, who are only to consider the property
in a far greater proportion. He is the heir to al take flight.' * The manner in which the tioned, ought to suffice at the present day, the actually possess as a loan during life.”