Lieutenant Alexander Bissett, of the Wizard ; which latter vessel, as there was very little wind, was to tow the boats, as well as cover them in their approach to the shore.
By great exertions, the boats were towed by the Wizard close to the vessels, when it was found impossible to bring them out without landing, most of the vessels being fastened to the shore by ropes from their keels and mast-heads. The boats, therefore, pulled to the beach with great resolution, exposed to the fire of two guns in the bow of the gun-boat, of two fieldpieces placed in a grove which flanked the beach, of a heavy gun in front of the town, and of a continued fire of musketry from the houses. But all this was no check to the ardour and intrepidity of British seamen and marines ; who leaped from the boats and rushed upon the enemy, with a fearless zeal that was not to be resisted.
The gun in front of the town was soon taken and spiked by Lieutenants Cashman and Hanlon ; and the French, who had drawn up a considerable force of regular troops in the grove to defend the two field-pieces, were dislodged by Captain Rea and Lieutenant Grant, of the marines ; who took possession of the guns and brought them off. In the mean time, Lieutenants Lindsay, Moresby, and Bissett, who had equally distinguished themselves in driving the enemy from the beach, were actively employed, first in taking possession of the gun-boat, which was the Vigilante, commanded by an enseigne de vaisseau, with a crew of 45 men, and then in freeing the merchant vessels from their fasts to the shore. The whole was soon accomplished, and the party re-embarked under the protection of the Wizard ; who, by her judicious manoeuvres and well-directed fire, contributed very essentially to keep the enemy in check, both in the advance and in the retreat of the boats. Notwithstanding the perilous nature of this very gallant enterprise, Lieutenant Cashman and his party accomplished it with so comparatively slight a loss, as one seaman killed and one mortally wounded. The French, on the other land, left many dead upon the ground.
Among the British cruisers appointed to harass the French army in its movements along the east coast of Spain, was the 38-gun frigate Impérieuse, Captain Lord Cochrane. This description of service, requiring, with great boldness and nautical experience, no slight share of military knowledge, was peculiarly adapted to the genius of that zealous and enterprising officer : and never did Lord Cochrane exert himself more strenuously, more effectually, or more honourably, than in the aid he afforded to the cause of the Spanish patriots. Of one quality in Lord Cochrane, we, in common with other compilers, have to complain : the brevity of his accounts ; all of which appear to be written more to recommend to notice his gallant companions in arms, than to blazon his own feats to the world.
On the 31st of July the Impérieuse, silenced, and Lord
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