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Wellington's Dispatches
June 8th - 12th, 1815


To Lieut. General Decken.

' Bruxelles, 8th June, 1815.


' I have had the honor of receiving your letter of the 7th instant.

' The objections which I entertain to the estimates that have been sent from Hanover are, first, that, in the sum of 88,221 rix-dollars, the pay to officers and soldiers is included who are not present with the corps. Secondly, that the contingencies (that is only staff and regimental contingencies), amounting to 12,324 rix-dollars a month, are enormous; and, upon examining the detail of the articles, I know that some of the expenses ought not to be charged at all; and others are estimated at a higher rate than they will really cost .

' These estimates, then, do not afford fair ground to ascertain the exact expense of Hanover in the maintenance of the l6,400 men, which is what Hanover has a right to demand, and what Great Britain ought to give; and, till I can form a judgment upon this point, so as to insert a specific sum in the article of the treaty, I can conclude nothing.

' To leave a blank for the sum, to be settled hereafter, or to engage generally to pay the expenses when they should be ascertained, would only lead to endless discussions between General Alten and me, which had better be avoided at all events, and for which I certainly shall not have leisure.

' I am therefore under the necessity of referring the whole matter to my Government; as, whatever may be my wish to settle this matter to the advantage and satisfaction of the Hanoverian Government, I cannot allow of any demand which is not founded on a necessary expense really incurred.

' I have the honor to be, &c.

To Viscount Castlereagh, K.G.

' Bruxelles, 8th June, 1815.


' My intention in regard to the Hanoverian subsidy was to conclude, first, a treaty by which £11. 2s. each man should be granted to Hanover for the whole number of 26,400 men, from the 25th May.

' I should then have formed another treaty, founded on the fact that Hanover employed so large a force only on account of her connexion with England, in which I should have agreed to pay to Hanover the £11. 2s. per man for 16,400 men (agreed to be paid by the treaty first mentioned) at the head quarters of the army, instead of in London; and in addition such farther sum per man as should cover the real expense incurred by Hanover in maintaining this force of 16,400 men.

' I should then have agreed to articles respecting the payment for recruits, remount horses, &c., to supply casualties, and to an article by which Great Britain would be bound to pay the Hanoverian pensions to disabled soldiers.

' I am concerned to state, however, that I have not yet been able to embody in a treaty the principles of this arrangement, which appears to me to suit both parties.

' I cannot get from the Hanoverian Government a fair estimate of the real expense of the subsidiary corps. I enclose the last which I received; and the objections of the Adjutant General to that for the pay of the officers and troops, for which you will see that charges are made for several not employed in this country.

' The estimate for the contingencies, which are only the staff and regimental contingencies, amount to nearly a seventh of the pay; and, when the detail of the estimate is examined, it will be found that the charges are either unnecessary or exorbitant; and that in fact no Government can ever have allowed such charges to be brought against it by its officers.

' Under these circumstances, I have been obliged to inform Lieut. General Decken that it is impossible for me to agree to any treaty founded upon such estimates.

' I have the honor to be, &c.

To Viscount Castlereagh, K.G.

' Bruxelles' 8th June, 1815.


'You will see my dispatch respecting the Hanoverian subsidy, in which I can do nothing. The truth is, that Decken wants to get as much as he can, not for his own Government, for that might be a fair principle for an Hanoverian negociating with an Englishman, but out of our Treasury to put into the pockets of the paymasters and sharks who attend all these armies. I have a contest with him, not only respecting his estimates, but also respecting the rate at which he is to receive the money; and I can do nothing with him.

' My opinion is, that we ought to get the 16,400 men for very little more than the £11. 2s. paid at head quarters, which would amount to £182,040 per annum.

' Taking the pay at 88,221 rix dollars per month, and valuing the rix-dollars at five for a pound sterling (and I believe they ought to be at six), the yearly expense would be £201,728, leaving a difference of not quite £20,000.

' Believe me, &c.

To Baron Hügel.

' Bruxelles, 8th June, 1815.

' The undersigned has received the note of Baron Hügel of the 8th, and has to express his concern that Baron Hügel should have signed the treaty of subsidy yesterday, on the part of the King of Wurtemberg, before the correctness of the copies was ascertained. The undersigned, however, now transmits the treaties signed by Baron Hugel, so that no trace will remain with the undersigned of this transaction.

' The undersigned has already more than once had the honor of stating to Baron Hugel that it was impossible for him to agree on the part of His Royal Highness the Prince Regent to pay the subsidy to the King of Wurtemberg for a longer period than for one month after the conclusion of a definitive treaty, by which the object of the general alliance should be attained. He is much concerned that it is not in his power to concede upon this point; and he cannot but think that the grant of the subsidy for the term of one month will more than defray the expense of the troops for the period which will be required for them to return to their own country.


To Sir Charles Stuart, G.C.B.

' Bruxelles, 9th June, 1815.

' SIR,

'I enclose the .proceedings of a General Court Martial on the trial of the two soldiers of the --th regiment, charged with the murder of an inhabitant of Bruxelles, which I beg may be laid before the King.

' In case His Majesty should be satisfied that the matter has been sufficiently investigated I will confirm the sentence, and will order that the soldiers may be released from Confinement, and may return to their duty.

' I have the honor to be, &c.

To Earl Bathurst.

'Bruxelles, 9th June, 1815.


' I enclose a letter from Lieut. Colonel Wissell, of the 1st hussars, to the Earl of Uxbridge, upon the want of English horses by the officers of that regiment.

' There is no doubt that it is most desirable that these officers should be mounted upon English horses; and that they have had no opportunity of purchasing any since the last war.

' I therefore beg leave to recommend that directions may be given that thirty nine horses may be purchased for them at the price stated, viz., forty guineas each, and that they may be sent to this country.

' I have the honor to be, &c.

To Lieut. Colonel Sir Henry Hardinge, K.C.B.

' Bruxelles, 10th June, 1815. 11 A.M.


' I have received your letter of last night. I have received intelligence that Buonaparte arrived at Maubeuge yesterday, and I believe he has gone along the frontier towards Lille. I have received nothing further this morning.

' I am already in communication with General Muffling about the French fortresses.

'Believe me, &c.

To Major General Sir Henry Torrens, K.C.B.

'Bruxelles, 10th June, 1815.


' I have received your official and private letters regarding the recruiting of Hanoverians who have formerly been in the service of the Legion, for the German Legion; and I have no hesitation in telling you that I conceive there could be no cause of complaint from this Government, or others, if the permission were given to enlist all Hanoverians, or all other Germans, who should offer themselves. The limitation of this principle should be founded, in my opinion, solely upon our views whether it would be convenient to ourselves to take into our pay, men who have deserted from other services before they offered themselves to us.

' Believe me, &c.

To H.R.H. the Prince of Orange, G.C.B.

'Bruxelles, 11th June, 1815.


' I have received your Royal Highness's letter of the 13th, and I see no reason why the trees should not be cut at Mons, as proposed by General Behr.

' I do not think I can authorise the destruction of the house without referring to the King; but I will write to His Majesty.

' I enclose your Royal Highness a memorial from the Duc d'Aremberg, regarding the use of a bridge on the canal of Condé by his tenants. Foreign officers are too apt to order measures of the kind complained of without necessity; and I shall be very much obliged to your Royal Highness if you will order General Behr to allow of the use of the bridge in question by the inhabitants of the country, as long as it may be possible consistently with the safety of the place.

' I likewise enclose your Royal Highness a confidential letter from Sir H. Clinton, regarding the citadel of Tournay. Nobody should be allowed to go into the citadels of Tournay or Ghent, or the redoubts at Mons; and, generally speaking, nobody should be allowed to go into the outworks of any of the places, or to walk upon the works, unless they are public walks. I request you to give orders accordingly.

' It appears certain, by reports from Paris, that Buonaparte had not left that city on the 7th.

' Believe me, &c.

' To Earl Bathurst.

' Bruxelles, 11th June, 1815.


' I enclose a letter which has been received from Dr. Higgins, deputy inspector of hospitals, regarding 120 Napoleons advanced to him at Talavera by Marshal Mortier for the use of the British hospital at that place; and I beg to submit for your Lordship's consideration, whether it would not be advisable to authorise me to pay this sum out of the extraordinaries of the army at present under my command.

' I have the honor to be, &c.

To the Earl of Mulgrave.

'Bruxelles, 12th June, 1815.


' I have received your letter of the 8th, and I am very much obliged to you for your attention to my recommendation in favor of Lieut. Colonel May and of Captain Newland.

' In regard to the artillery, I had settled that their doing duty with the Hanoverian artillery should be considered the same as doing duty with the artillery of the King's German Legion, and that it should not give operation to the brevet rank. I had not yet extended the principle to the engineers, because the case had not occurred; but I see no reason why it should not be so extended. Indeed, as we shall have no foreign engineers, and a good deal of foreign artillery, in the army under my command, it will be more easy to apply it to the engineers than to the artillery.

' Lieut. Colonel Burgoyne will have no right, and I believe has no inclination, to complain of this principle, as, if I am not mistaken, it was applied to his own case in his own favor at the siege of Burgos and elsewhere.

' In regard to the pontoons, I should think they ought to belong to the engineer branch of the service, if they were not driven by the artillery drivers. That corps is, however, so very bad in its composition, and it is so difficult to make either men or officers do their duty, that I thought it best to place the pontoon establishment under an artillery officer, in order that he might take charge of, be responsible for, and proceed with, the drivers, their officers, and horses, as he would have done if he had had a brigade of artillery under his charge.

' Our pontoon establishment here, however, has been formed by Colonel Smyth; the drivers hired generally by himself, or supplied by the Commissary General; and he appears so well aware that the principal object of all is to take care of the horses, as without good horses a pontoon train cannot be manœuvred at all, that I hope the establishment will go on well.

' I am very much obliged to your Lordship for all that you have done for us, and I trust that we shall be able to play our part.

Believe me, &c.

To --- ---

' à Bruxelles, ce 12 Juin, 1815.


' Je vous envoie copie de la lettre que je viens de recevoir du Roi en réponse à celle que je lui avais écrite pour lui demander permission pour que vous alliez en Hollande. J'espère que vous avez reçu ma lettre du 4.

' J'ai l'honneur d'etre, &c.

To H.R.H. the Prince of Orange, G.C.B.

' Bruxelles, 12th June, 1815. half-past 12, noon.


' I enclose your Royal Highness the copy of a letter which I have received from the King, in answer to that which I had written to him in regard to the formation to be given to the army, in consequence of the arrival of the Nassau troops.

' I have spoken to the Comte de Reede, from whom I understand that the principal objection which His Majesty has to the junction of the Nassau troops, and to the proposed formation of the army, consists in the omission of the Duc de Nassau to write to His Majesty himself upon the subject, and in that stated by His Majesty in his letter to me. We can remove the latter by adding the Nassau troops either to the fourth division of the army, or the division of the troops of Nassau; and as for the other objection, it will remedy itself.

' I will speak to General Tindal upon the subject, in order to see whether the formation of the army into four divisions instead of three may not be attended with inconveniencies in relation to their subsistence; and if that should not be the case, and your Royal Highness should concur in opinion with me, I will write to you officially upon the subject, and will order General Kruse to put himself under your command.

' Believe me, &c.

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