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Preface. The story of the war in which the power of the great Mahratta confederacy was broken is one of the most stirring pages of the campaigns which, begun by Clive, ended in the firm establishment of our great empire in the Indian Peninsula. When the struggle began, the Mahrattas were masters of no small portion of India; their territory comprising the whole country between Bombay and Delhi, and stretching down from Rajputana to Allahabad;... more...

Preface. In the following pages I have endeavoured to give a vivid picture of the wonderful events of the ten years, which at their commencement saw Madras in the hands of the French--Calcutta at the mercy of the Nabob of Bengal--and English influence apparently at the point of extinction in India--and which ended in the final triumph of the English, both in Bengal and Madras. There were yet great battles to be fought, great efforts to be made,... more...

Chapter 1: Venice. "I suppose you never have such nights as these in that misty island of yours, Francisco?" "Yes, we have," the other said stoutly. "I have seen just as bright nights on the Thames. I have stood down by Paul's Stairs and watched the reflection of the moon on the water, and the lights of the houses on the bridge, and the passing boats, just as we are doing now. "But," he added honestly, "I must confess that we do not have such... more...

Preface. With the exception of the terrible retreat from Afghanistan, none of England's many little wars have been so fatal--in proportion to the number of those engaged--as our first expedition to Burma. It was undertaken without any due comprehension of the difficulties to be encountered, from the effects of climate and the deficiency of transport; the power, and still more the obstinacy and arrogance of the court of Ava were altogether... more...

CHAPTER I A Journey to France "I don't know what to say, my dear." "Why, surely, James, you are not thinking for a moment of letting him go?" "Well, I don't know. Yes, I am certainly thinking of it, though I haven't at all made up my mind. There are advantages and disadvantages." "Oh, but it is such a long way, and to live among those French people, who have been doing such dreadful things, attacking the Bastille, and, as I have heard you... more...


CHAPTER I. A QUARREL. The great Abbey of Westminster was approaching its completion; an army of masons and labourers swarmed like bees upon and around it, and although differing widely in its massive architecture, with round Saxon windows and arches, from the edifice that was two or three generations later to be reared in its place,—to serve as a still more fitting tomb for the ashes of its pious founder,—it was a stately abbey,... more...

CHAPTER I: A STROKE OF GOOD FORTUNE A mounted officer, followed by two orderlies, was proceeding at a brisk trot from Paris to St. Denis, in October, 1639, when he came upon a large party of boys, who, armed with sticks, were advancing in something like military order against a wall on the top of a low hill. "What are you doing?" he asked the lad who appeared to be the leader. "We are playing at war, sir. We are advancing against the fortress... more...

Chapter 1: A Rescue. Most of the towns standing on our seacoast have suffered a radical change in the course of the last century. Railways, and the fashion of summer holiday making, have transformed them altogether, and great towns have sprung up where fishing villages once stood. There are a few places, however, which seem to have been passed by, by the crowd. The number yearly becomes smaller, as the iron roads throw out fresh branches. With... more...

CHAPTER I THE MAYO FUSILIERS "What am I to do with you, Terence? It bothers me entirely; there is not a soul who will take you, and if anyone would do so, you would wear out his patience before a week's end; there is not a dog in the regiment that does not put his tail between his legs and run for his bare life if he sees you; and as for the colonel, he told me only the other day that he had so many complaints against you, that he was fairly... more...

CHAPTER I. A VIRGINIA PLANTATION. "I won't have it, Pearson; so it's no use your talking. If I had my way you shouldn't touch any of the field hands. And when I get my way—that won't be so very long—I will take very good care you shan't. But you shan't hit Dan." "He is not one of the regular house hands," was the reply; "and I shall appeal to Mrs. Wingfield as to whether I am to be interfered with in the discharge of my duties."... more...