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Collections - Letters

Letters of Lieutenant Colonel Charles Bevan, 1804-1811.

Letter Number 54

Dated: 11th October 1810 from CB Ceuta
Addressed to Mrs C Bevan, Money Hill, Rickmansworth, Herts

Your letters My dearest Mary, are always most welcome to me but more particularly so when the bearers of good accounts of yourself, our children and your Family – I shall look forward with an anxiety I need not describe to you, for the arrival of the next letter from Money Hill – I cannot but repeat the comfort that I feel in the situation you are placed in the house of your own Mother – I pray to God you may be as well as you have been and I shall be satisfied - I am very sorry that you seem to think no probability exists of Mr Henman’s house but perhaps the gentleman may change his mind when he has resided there. What an admirable addition it would be to your Brother’s and Mother’s houses – to have both their home to (prevent) nuisances establishing themselves so very near – I am glad to hear that little Henrietta is gone to School, as I think she was a little too much indulged at home, and was in a way to be taught high fancies and ideas which they will be much better without – I am most highly pleased that there is a mean of legal dating that debt without inconvenience – So all in that quarter looks well. The sky is cleared and the gloomy prospect that loomed upon the house is vanished –

I wish another quarter that I could subdue was also clear, but I will not complain; so that you are well are all my present consideration

Here just now we are ch---- at an expedition that is going under the command of Lord Blaney to Malaga, -- the Naval Commander is Captain Hope of the Topaz Frigate, apparently a most excellent young man; I have not seen many that I liked so well at first sight – The force is small and is probably rather to feel the way than any other thing. The only Englishmen are three hundred of the 89th Regt, the Spanish Regt of Toledo went from hence about 700 strong. The remainder of the Force consists of Poles & Germans, deserters from the French Army. What is expected from such a force so constituted ? I ------- Mullins acting as Brigade Major to Lord B in the room of ?Stevens who has been obliged to go to England on account of his health – Mrs Mullins always enquires very kindly after you & yours.

I am glad you continue to correspond with our excellent friend Mrs Shaw. Dows James hold any chance of getting a ship?

Give my best regards to him, and to Mrs D of course you will say for me to your excellent Mother & to your sisters

May God protect you, my best Mary

I am ever your own C.B/

Ceuta 11th Oct 1810


i) The beginning of the letter may reflect anxiety about Mary’s confinement – up until this he has not shown much enthusiasm
ia) Mr Henman – not identified = ?connected with the poetess Mrs H (or was she US)
ib) Henrietta – his brother Edward had a daughter of that name
ii) Blayney’s expedition – CB was better out of this, a less than competent excursion. They were surprised on the landing beach at Fucengirola and Blayney and half the 89th were captured. 89th became 2nd Royal Irish Fusiliers. Apart from the King’s German Legion which was a respected and effective integral part of the British Army there were innumerable émigré Corps of varying value – like the Chausseurs Brittanique which as well as Royalist deserters from the French, recruited Poles, Swiss and Croats
iii) Capt Hope RN highly competent officer who achieved fame in his leading part in the capture in 1812 of U.S.S. President. Topaz a 38 gun Frigate had distinction under another Captain in 1809
iv) Mullins had been a fellow officer with CB in 28th. Mrs Mullins in previous letters was said to have lost two infants in Gibraltar through fever
v) Mrs Shaw – CB’s cousin of whom he had expectations of inheritance
vi) James – Mary’s brother Capt James Dacres RN who was to get the Frigate Guerriere later in 1810 or 1811, and lost her to USS Constitution in 1812.


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