wolfenbiittel regiment attack montcalm brunswick
WOLFE, JAMES (1727-1759), the hero of Quebec, was the son of Lieutenant-General Edward Wolfe, and was born in the vicarage of Westerham, Kent, on January 2,1727. At an early age he evinced a keen interest in the adventures and achievements of war, and at thirteen accompanied his father to Cartagena. Obtaining a commission as ensign in the 12th regiment of foot in 1741, he embarked for Flanders on the 10th May of the following year, and during the campaign of 1743, in which he acted as adjutant, he was present at the battle of Dettingen. Having exhibited, in addition to high courage, a rare talent for command, he received while yet a youth a commission, on 3d June 1744, as captain in the 4th or king's regiment of foot, and shortly afterwards was made brigade-major. In this capacity he took part in the suppression of the rebellion of 1745, being present both at Falkirk and at Culloden. In January 1747 he sailed for the Continent, and for his valour at the battle of Lawfeldt on the 2d July he received the public thanks of the commander-in-chief, the duke of Cumberland. On 5th January 1749 he was gazetted major of the 20th regiment, and in the following year he became lieutenant-colonel. In this position he began to manifest those great qualities as a commander which were the secret of his success, and, while introducing into the regiment that perfect discipline necessary to the highest proficiency, secured the personal affection of almost every soldier. In the luckless Rochefort expedition he was quartermaster-general, and by his dashing gallantry attracted the special notice of Pitt. When therefore it was decided in 1758 to send an expedition to Cape Breton under Amherst, Wolfe was appointed by Pitt brigadier-general. Under the eye of Amherst and Admiral Boscawen he conducted the landing at Louisburg through a heavy surf and in face of the well-directed fire of the enemy. He himself was the first to land, and forming his division into compact order attacked and carried with the bayonet the nearest French battery, after which he formed the camp. Chiefly through his ardent energy the siege operations were brought to a successful issue after an investment of six months. Wolfe then eagerly urged an attack on Quebec, expressing his determination to leave the service if nothing further was to be done. Pitt not only acted on his advice, but selected him as the leader of the difficult and almost chimerical enterprise. Quebec, besides being strongly fortified, was occupied by forces which greatly outnumbered those placed at Wolfe's disposal. Moreover, Montcalm the French commander had an open country behind him for supplies, and was only called upon to protract the defence behind his ramparts till the resources of the besiegers were exhausted. It was incumbent on Wolfe to force Montcalm to give battle, and this could only be effected by mauwuvres of the most daring kind. After bombarding the city from the heights of Point Levi, Wolfe made an attempt, 29th June 1759, to attack Montcalm's camp in front, but his instructions were not carried out with sufficient accuracy, and foreseeing that irretrievable disaster was imminent he found it necessary after the attack had begun to recall his troops and retire. As the enemy were now on their guard against a second attack of a similar kind, Wolfe saw that the problem must be solved by some other method, and after some time spent in careful consideration he hit upon a still more daring plan. In the evening of the 12th September with 5000 men he silently descended the St Lawrence in boats, and, scaling the heights of Abraham in the darkness, drew up his forces on the plains so as to cut off llontcalm's supplies. The audacity of the movement was too much for Montcalm's patience. On his attention being called to it he exclaimed " Oui, je les vois oil ils ne doivent pas etre ; je vais les ecraser." But the genius of Wolfe was equal to the occasion. With calm self-possession he forbade a single shot to be fired till the enemy were within thirty yards. The crushing volleys with which they were then met, followed by an impetuous attack with the bayonet, was decisive of the action. While leading a charge at the head of the Louisburg grenadiers, Wolfe had one of his wrists shattered by a shot, but wrapping a handkerchief round it he kept on. Another shot struck him, and he still advanced, when a third lodged in his breast. While he was lying in a swoon some one near him exclaimed, " They run; see how they run !" "Who run " demanded Wolfe, like one roused from sleep. " The enemy," was the answer; " they give way everywhere." Wolfe then signified that a regiment should be sent down to Charles river to cut off their retreat, and on learning that his orders had been obeyed he turned on his side, and murmured as his last words, " Now God be praised, I will die in peace." Montcalm, the French commander, was mortally wounded in the same action, and died soon afterwards. By the surrender of Quebec Canada was lost to the French.
See Wright, Life of Major-Ceneral James Wolfe (1864), and Parkman, ..11-mtealm and Wolfe (2 vols., 1884).
WOLFENBUTTEL, a small town in the duchy of Brunswick, is situated on both banks of the Oker, 7 miles to the south of Brunswick. It contains various minor tribunals, some schools, and a small garrison ; and it carries on a few unimportant manufactures (machinery, copper goods, linen, cork, preserves, Sc.). Wolfenbuttel, in fact, may be accepted as tolerably representative of the average dull German provincial town, clinging more or less faithfully to the traditions of the period when it was the residence of the ducal family. It owes its chief interest to its connexion with Lessing, who was ducal librarian there from 1770 till his death in 1781. The old library building, designed in 1723 in imitation of the Pantheon at Rome, contains a marble statue of the poet. The library, including 300,000 printed books and 7000 MSS., has, however, been transferred to a large new Renaissance edifice, opened in October 1887. It is especially rich in copies of the Bible and in books of the early Reformation period. Opposite the old library is the palace, occupied since 1835 by a theatre, a law court, and a seminary. The ducal burial-vault is in the church of St Mary. There are two other Evangelical churches and a Roman Catholic church in 1-Yolfenbfittel, and perhaps the only other noteworthy building is the large prison. The ancient fortifications have been converted into promenades, once a favourite resort of Lessing. In 1885 the population of Wolfenbiittel, including the suburbs of Auguststadt and Juliusstadt, was 13,455. The "Wolfenbiittel Fragments " are alluded to under LESSING, vol. xiv. p. 481 ; see also RE➢IARUS.
A castle is said to have been founded on the site of Wolfenbiittel by a margrave of Meissen about 1046. When this began in 1267 to be the residence of the early Brunswick or Wolfenhiittel line of counts, a town gradually grew up around it. In 1542 it was taken by the Saxons and Hessians, who however evacuated it five years later after the battle of Mithlberg. In the Thirty Years' War, in J one 1641, the Swedish, under -Wrangel and Himigsmark, defeated the Austrians under the archduke Leopold at Wolfenbiittel. The town passed wholly into the possession of the Brunswick-Wolfenbiittel family in 1671, and for nearly one hundred years enjoyed the distinction of being the ducal capital. In 1754, however, Duke Charles transferred the ducal residence to Brunswick, a blow from which Wolfenbiittel has never recovered.