« ПредишнаНапред »
Book IV. the encroachments of a neighbour, whom as yet they despised. Madoo Row,
j^TM"^ who, third in order of time, had, under the title of Peshwa, or Prime Minister, succeeded to the supreme authority among the Mahratta states, crossed the Kistna in May, 1764, with an army which greatly outnumbered that which Hyder was able to bring into the field.* He sustained a tedious, unequal conflict, which greatly reduced and disheartened his army, till 1765; when the Mahrattas agreed to retire, upon condition that he should restore the districts arrested from Morari Row, relinquish all claims upon the territory of Savanoor, and pay thirty-two lacks of rupees.
He hastened to give order to his recent conquests in the east, which the late interruption of his prosperity had animated into rebellion. As his forts and garrisons had remained firm, these disturbances were speedily reduced, and he immediately turned his eye to new acquisitions. Having employed the greater part of the year 1765 in regulating the affairs of his government, and repairing his losses, he descended into Canara in the beginning of 1766, with the declared intention of making the conquest of Malabar. After an irregular war of some duration with the Nairs, the whole country submitted; and a few subsequent struggles only afforded an opportunity for cutting off the most refractory subjects, and establishing a more complete subjection. He had accomplished this important enterprise before the end of the year 1766, when he was recalled to Seringapatam, by intelligence of the utmost importance. Madoo Row had issued from Poona; Nizam Ali, with an English corps, was advancing from Hyderabad; the English had already sent to attack some of his districts which interfered with Carnatic; and all these powers were joined, according to report, in one grand confederacy for the conquest of Mysore. Nizam Ali, however, and the English, were the only enemies whom he was immediately required to oppose; the former of whom, as we have already seen, he easily converted into
* Col. Wilks makes, on this occasion, a judicious remark, the spirit of which should have saved him from the pecuniary exaggerations mentioned above. "I have found it proper," he says, "to distrust my manuscripts in statements of numbers more than in any other case. In no country, and in no circumstance, is it safe to trust to any statement of numbers that is not derived from actual returns. Even Sir Eyre Coote, whose keen and experienced eye might be considered a safe guide, and whose pure mind never harboured a thought of exaggeration, states the force of Hyder, in the battle of Porto Novo, 1st July, 1781, to have been from 140,000 to 150,000 horse and irregular infantry, besides twenty.five battalions of regulars; when it is certain that the whole did not exceed 80,000." Hist. Sketches, p. 461.
an ally: And in this state of his kingdom and fortunes, he began his first war Chap. VIII. with the English, in 1767* ^ |^^""""/
He was exasperated, not only by the readiness with which, in the late treaty Hyder's first with the Nizam, the English had agreed to join in hostilities against him, but ^j-^1th8 by an actual invasion of his dominions. Under the pretence that it formerly belonged to Carnatic, but chiefly, induced, we may suppose, by the consideration of the passage which it afforded an enemy into the heart of that country, the English had sent a Major, with some Europeans and two battalions of Sepoys, into Baramahl, who, unhappily, were just strong enough to overrun the open territory, and enrage its master; but were unable to make any impression upon the strong forts, much less to secure possession of the country.
It was by means of Maphuz Khan, the brother of the English Nabob, who The English had acted as an enemy of the English from the period of his recall as renter of whhthe NiJMadura and Tinivelly, that Hyder effected his alliance with the Nizam. The 5^i"t^ded English corps, under Colonel Smith, which had followed the Nizam into Hyder's Hyder. dominions, had separated from his army, upon intimation of the design which that faithless usurper was supposed to entertain. The Nabob Mahomed Ali, who had early intelligence of the views of the Nizam, urged the Presidency to attack his camp before the junction of the Mysorean. The advice, however, was neglected, and, in the month of September, Colonel Smith was attacked on his march, near Changamal, by the united forces of the new allies. He sustained the attack, which, for the space of an hour was vigorously maintained; and for that time repelled the enemy. He found himself, however, under the necessity of flight; and marching thirty-six hours, without refreshment, he arrived at Trinomalee. He here enclosed himself within the walls of the fort, from which he soon beheld the surrounding country covered by the troops of the enemy, and desolated with fire and sword.
He remained not long an idle spectator, though his weakness compelled him A party of to act with caution. He encamped for a few days under the walls of Trino- n^h, to'the6 malee, and afterwards near a place called Calishy-Wacum, about ten miles fur- M^^Jj ^fnicli ther north. While the army lay in this situation, Hyder planned an expedition, they are on
, . , , , li-Tiii.^ the point of
from which important consequences might have ensued. He detached into Car- taking by surnatic 5000 horse, who marched without opposition to the very precincts of Ma- pnse' dras. The place was completely taken by surprise. The President and Council
* For the Life of Hyder, the Researches of Col. Wilks, p. 240—478, are the best seurce of intelligence.
VOL. II. 2 O
Book IV. were at their garden houses, without the town; and had not the M; ^ 'been more eager to plunder than to improve the advantages which
pected arrival had procured, the seizure of thebled them to dictate the terms of peace. Certain ad- Before the rains compelled the English army to retire into cantonments at mTneTby the Wandewash, Colonel Smith attacked the enemy, with some advantage, before English in- Trinomalee. In the mean time Nizam Ali, whose resources could ill endure a
Nizam's dis- protracted contest, or the disordered state of his government a tedious absence,
gust with the . * . . ....
war. grew heartily sick of the war; and during the period of inactivity signified to
the English his desire of negotiation. As a security against deception Colonel Smith insisted that he should first separate his troops from those of Hyder. But in the mean time the period of operations returned; and the English commander, now respectably reinforced, marched towards the enemy, who in the month of December had taken the field on the further side of Velore. The two armies met, and came to action, between Amboor and Wanumbaddy, when Hyder and his ally were defeated, and fled to Caverypatnam. This disaster quickened the decision of the Nizam, who now lost not any time in separating his troops from the Mysoreans; and commencing his negotiation with the English. A They conclude treaty was concluded between the Subahdar, the Nabob, and the English, in JtreatJ- February 1768; by which the titles of the Nabob, and the grants which he had received were confirmed; the former conditions respecting the Northern Circars were renewed; the duanee, or revenues, in other words the government of Carnatic Balagaut, a country possessed by Hyder, was in name consigned to the English, subject to a payment of seven lacs per annum to the Nizam, and the tribute or chout to the Mahrattas; the English agreed to assist the Nizam with two battalions of Sepoys, and six pieces of cannon, as often as required; and the tribute due to the Nizam for the Circars was reduced from nine lacs perpetual, to seven lacs per annum, for the space of six years.*
* Collection of Treaties (printed 1812), p. 36*, 372. The Presidency held up to the Directors the necessity of supporting the Nizam, as a barrier against the Mahrattas—a policy of which the Directors entirely disapproved. Bengal Letter, 16th March, 1768; Fifth Report, Secret Committee, 1781, Appendix No. 6. See too a letter, 13th May 1768, Rous's Appendix, p. 517, in which the connection with the Nizam is strongly reprobated. "It is not," they say, "for the Company to take the part of umpires of Indostan. If it had not been for the imprudent measures you have taken, the country powers would have formed a balance of power among themselves. We wish to see the Indian Princes remain as a check upon one another, without our interfering."—They declare expressly, "With respect to the Nizam and Hyder Ali, it is our interest that neither of them should be totally crushed." To the same purpose, see lb. p. 529. In another letter, dated
The victory gained over the united forces of the allies, and their final separa- Chap. VIII. tion by treaty, elevated the Madras government to a high tone of ambition. They' resolved not to carry their arms into Mysore, but to make the conquest and ac- The Presidenquisition of the country. They pressed Mahomed Al i to join the army, that the ^yaf "gainst - war might as far as possible appear to be his. "They pompously" (as the H>derwith Directors afterwards reproached them) " appointed him Phousdar of Mysore," and hopesafterwards accused him, for accepting that very title, "Of an insatiable desire of extending his dominions."* To bring the conduct of the war still more under the control of the Presidency, they sent to the army two members of council, as field deputies, without whose concurrence no operations should be carried on. These members compelled the commander of the troops to renounce his own scheme of operations, that he might act offensively against Mysore. The English army, however, too feeble for the enterprise, acted without energy; and the summer of 1768 passed in unavailing movements and diminutive attempts. Hyder, the newness of whose government could not long dispense with his presence, was well inclined to postpone his struggle with the English, and made in September an overture towards peace. It was received, however, with great haughtiness by the Presidency, whose persuasion of the weakness of their enemy, and hopes of a speedy conquest of his realm, it only tended to increase and inflame. In the mean time Hyder was by no means inattentive to Superiority of the war. He took the considerable fort of Mulwaggle; and gained some ad- H-vder" vantages over Colonel Wood, who attempted in vain to recover the place. The Presidency, dissatisfied with the progress of the war, under Colonel Smith, who was highly exasperated by the control of the field deputies, recalled that respectable officer; and Mahomed Ali, whom they had in some measure forced to 17th March, 1769, after telling the Madras Presidency, that they had paid no regard to the above injunctions, and to the whole tenor, which was to the same effect, of all the instructions of their employers, they 6ay, "It is with the utmost anxiety and displeasure that we see the tenth article of the treaty with the Subah, by which he cedes to the Company the Duanny of the Carnatic Balaghaut; a measure so totally repugnant to our most positive and repeated orders, not to extend our possessions beyond the Carnatic Our displeasure hereat is aggravated, by the disingenuous manner in which these affairs are represented to us in your advices." They express a strong opinion on the passion of their servants for interfering extensively with the native powers. "We cannot take a view of your conduct, from the commencement of your negotiation for the Circars, without the strongest disapprobation; and when we see the opulent fortunes, suddenly acquired by our servants, who are returned since that period, it gives but too much weight to the public opinion, that the rage for negotiations, treaties, and alliances, has private advantage for its object more than the public good." Ibid. p. 520, 521. * Letter from the Directors to Governor and Council of Madras, 17th March, 1769.
284 HISTORY OP BRITISH INDIA.Book IV. join the army, but who was now unwilling to leave it, they commanded, under ^"^^"^ pain of deprivation, to return. The army became weak and despondent, through sickness and desertion. Hyder displayed increasing vigour. He attacked Colonel Wood, who was unable to save his baggage. Before the end of the year he had recovered all the conquered districts; and in January, 1769, carried his usual ravages into Carnatic. He penetrated into the district of Trichinopoly; and detached one of his Generals into the provinces of Madura and Tinivelly, which he plundered and laid waste. The English army were unprovided with horse, and could neither overtake the march of Hyder, nor interrupt his devastations. No part of the southern division of Carnatic escaped his destructive ravages, except the dominions of the Rajah of Tanjore, who saved himself by a timely accommodation, and whose alliance Hyder was solicitous to gain. Colonel Smith was again placed at the head of the English forces, and by judicious movements straitened the operations of Hyder. He even inter•posed with dexterity a detachment between Hyder and his own country, which was of the less importance, however, to that warrior, as he drew his resources from the country in which he fought. Hyder sur- Hyder now meditated a stroke which he executed with great felicity and address. Presidency by Sending all his heavy baggage and collected plunder home, from Pondicherry, a sudden ap- which during this incursion he had twice visited to confer with the French, he
Madras, and drew the English army, by a series of artful movements, to a considerable distomakeaem tance from Madras, when, putting himself at the head of 6000 cavalry, and hasty peace, performing a march of 120 miles in a space of three days, he appeared suddenly on the mount of San Thome, in the immediate vicinity of the English capital. From this he dispatched a message to the Governor, requiring that a negotiation for peace should immediately be opened; and that in the mean time the approach of the army in the field should be forbidden. The Presidency were struck with consternation. The fort might undoubtedly have held out till the arrival of Smith; but the open town, with its riches, the adjacent country, and the garden houses of the President and Council, would have been ravaged and destroyed. The Presidency were now seriously inclined to peace; and notwithstanding the unfavourableness of their situation, they agreed to negotiate upon Hyder's terms. A treaty was concluded on the 4th of April, 1769, consisting of two grand conditions; first, a mutual restitution of conquests, including the cession to Hyder of a small district, which had formerly been cut off from the Mysorean dominions; and secondly, mutual aid, and alliance in defensive wars.