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having before me several interesting military documents, in the possession of Mr. Philippart, relating to the affairs in Russia, and drawn up by very distinguished characters; these, together with his Narrative of the Campaign of 1812, published in the Military Panorama, furnished me with sufficient materials
for my structure; and from the latter I have
taken the liberty to make copious extracts, which will be found among the notes: he has also allowed me to enrich my work with an extract * from a letter, descriptive of the events of the Campaign in Russia till the expulsion of the enemy from Moscow; written to him from the theatre of those grand historical events, by Sir Robert Ker Porter, a gentleman whose reputation is well known and justly appreciated.
* Page 147
I have endeavoured to keep close to the Narrative in question, and have purposely avoided extensive digressions and episodes ; as to have strayed from a subject of such national importance, could only diminish the interest without giving a real grace to the Poem.-It has also been my study to record, not only the exploits of the Russian armies during their bold, vigorous, and successful struggle against foreign oppression, but also the sentiinents which influenced those great exertions; the powerful fire of patriotism and loyalty; and the still brighter glow of religious fervor so strikingly apparent in every circumstance of that critical and brilliant campaign, when the armies which filled the world with
dread, and deluged her fair face with human blood, were at their gates, and in their palaces; when their temples were profaned, and their children violated; and the sacred diadem
itself apparently within the grasp of another
Titan: then the soul of Russia was awakened,
and her gigantic powers overwhelmed her enemies with a sudden destruction,
I have now to revert to circumstances which
call forth the best feelings of my nature: the sentiments by which I am impressed are grateful and pleasing; but expression in this instance is denied me. To the valued few,
but illustrious and honourable characters, who
encouraged me to a perseverance in my literary attempt, I would fain offer acknowledgments worthy of them to receive, and in unison with my own ideas.-I find it impossible; but I have a pride in declaring, that their re
membrance will be ever before me.