The Word on the Street
home | background | illustrations | distribution | highlights | search & browse | resources | contact us

Broadside entitled 'Desperate Engagement'




An Account of a Most DESPERATE BATTLE which
took place on the 13th of April, 1824, between the clans
of two Chieftains, between Auchterarder and Fosswell
the Battle was for a long while doubtful, till the two
generals encountered each other, single-handed, and fought
most furiously. At length they both fell covered with
wounds, when the Kincardine troops beat a disgraceful
retread, and left their gallant Leader to the mercy of his
enemies. Taken from the Edinburgh Weekly Chronicle
of Wednesday, 5th May, 1824.

An ancient estate lying in the immediate neighbourhood of the
village of Aucherarder, which in early ages had been the seat
of a noble and gallant family, is now the property of an indi-
vidual less known in the historical or military world. This
chieftain lately conceived that he had a right to a road thro'
another chief's lands; on the brae of Fosswell, of least thought
it would be advantageous to have so; but learning that he
was to be opposed in his purpose, he mnsterad a few of his
clan, and directed them to take and keep possession of a par-
ticular post, which would be extremely advantageous, and in
fact form the key of his army's position in opening the: pro-
posed road; which they did, bat were soon dislodged by the
Fosswell clief's troops. A warfare ensued betwixt both ar-
mies, which lasted for upwards of two weeks, by the post
being captured and recaptured almont, daily : so much so, that
a general engagewent became inevitable, in preparing for
which, both chiefs summoned the whole of their respective
clans, retainers, and dependants, to appear at head quarters
on Tuesday, the 13th ult. under the usual feudal pains of
fire and sword, &c, but whether by the.ancient mode of the
torch, or other messenger, we have not learned.

The awful day approached, and tke troops on each side
burned with ardour to distinguish themselves in presence of
their leaders!    But alas ! they were miserably disappointed;
for these great chiefs, in place of heading their troops on the
day of action, placed generals under them   the evening pre-
ceding the engagement, and retreated to a place of safety,
whether from   Hudibras' motive,   " he that fights   and runs
away, &c." we know not; but be that as it may, the crmies
came in sight of each other about 11 o'clock, A. M, when a
genéral engagement immediately ensued,   the furiousness of
which, or the obstinacy and gallantry displayed by both
sides, it is impossible for us to do justice to ; suffice it to say,
that General C. commanding the Kincardine troops, burning
for military fame, and regardless of personal danger, advanc-
ed before his troops, overleaped the enemy's breast-work,
and planted his standard within their entrenchments, where
he was immediately encountered, single-handed, by General
P. commander of the Fosswell troops.    Prodigies of valour
were performed on both sides, until both these gallant gen-
erals fell covered with wounds ; while the Kincardine troops,
to their eternal disgrace, neither sufficiently supported   their
gallant general, nor even   attempted   to carry him off the
field, but beat a cowardly retreat, and left him a prisoner in
the hanbs of his enemies, by whom, we are happy to say, he
was treatee with   all the attention and humanity due to his

It is impossible to distinguish each individual particular.
Every one fought as if victory depanded on his single arm ;
the. two generals, however, deserve our highest praise. It is
evident that General C, imitated the example of Buonaparte
and Berthier at the bridge of Lodi...This speaks Volumes.
and oar readers, we are sure, will be happy to learn, that
both generals, C. and P. are in a fair way of recovery ; altho'
it leaves a lasting stigma on their cowardly chiefs to desert
such brave men in the day of hattle.


previous pageprevious          
Probable date published: 1824   shelfmark: L.C.1268
Broadside entitled 'Desperate Engagement'
View larger image

NLS home page   |   Digital gallery   |   Credits

National Library of Scotland © 2004

National Library of Scotland