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Dreadful Scenes In La Vendee

In La Vendee, one of the departments of France, an insurrection broke
out against the Jacobinical government, in 1793.

Upwards of two hundred battles and skirmishes were fought in this
devoted country. The revolutionary fever was in its access; the shedding
of blood seemed to have become positive pleasure to the perpetrators of
slaughter, and was varied by each invention which cruelty could invent
to give it new zest. The habitations of the Vendeans were destroyed,
their families subjected to violation and massacre, their cattle houghed
and slaughtered, and their crops burnt and wasted. One republican column
assumed and merited the name of the Infernal, by the horrid atrocities
which they committed. At Pilau, they roasted the women and children in a
heated oven. Many similar horrors could be added, did not the heart and
hand recoil from the task. Without quoting any more special instances of
horror, we use the words of a republican eye witness, to express the
general spectacle presented by the theatre of public conflict.

"I did not see a single male being at the towns of St. Hermand,
Chantonnay, or Herbiers. A few women alone had escaped the sword.
Country-seats, cottages, habitations of whichever kind, were burnt. The
herds and flocks were wandering in terror around their usual places of
shelter, now smoking in ruins. I was surprised by night, but the
wavering and dismal blaze of conflagration afforded light over the
country. To the bleating of the terrified flocks, and bellowing of the
terrified cattle, was joined the deep hoarse notes of carrion crows, and
the yells of wild animals coming from the recesses of the woods to prey
upon the carcasses of the slain. At length a distant colume of fire,
widening and increasing as I approached, served me as a beacon. It was
the town of Mortagne in flames. When I arrived there, no living
creatures were to be seen, save a few wretched women who were striving
to save some remnants of their property from the general
conflagration."--Les Memoires d'un Ancien Administrateur des Armees

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