1840 ORIGINAL SIGNIFICANT MANUSCRIPT DIARY OF A BRITISH ARMY OFFICER'S [WHO MAY VERY WELL HAVE BEEN A SPY] TOUR OF ENGLAND'S OLD FOE AT A TIME OF CHAOS AND COOPERATION

By: CAPTAIN H. HERMAN

Price: $8,855.99

Quantity: 1 available


On offer is an original, historically significant and absolutely superb first-hand account of an army officer travelling in 1840s Europe. Was he a tourist or was he a spy? His journal takes the form of a pocket notebook measuring 7.25 inches by 4.75 inches. There are 54 pages and they are 100% complete. The handwriting is copperplate. It is hard but not impossible to read. The journal's contents more than make up for its condition. The covers have separated from the book. The pages themselves have separated into their several sections but all are present. The pages are not numbered but there are dates entered in places in his narration. It is the contents though that captures the imagination. Captain H. Herman is a British Army officer. In 1840, he travels from the northeast to the southwest of Spain. Visiting major centres such as Barcelona, Seville, and Cadiz, he paints a detailed picture of the countryside, its inhabitants and the customs he encounters. As befits a military person, he has a sharp eye for detail and his notes are accompanied by a number of finely-executed ink line drawings. He notes other officers that he meets, regiments (including one that we would refer to today as 'off-the books' ) and notable personages. These were tumultuous times in Spain. Ferdinand VII died without a male heir. Prior to his death he changed the succession laws to enable his young (3 years old) daughter, Isabella to assume the throne instead of his more reactionary brother Carlos. This set off the Carlist wars that raged for years. Isabella's mother ruled as regent and eventually she found a winning general - Baldemero Espartero to help her drive back the Carlists. The country, already devastated by the Napoleonic Wars, sank further into poverty and destitution. The British government supported Isabella in her endeavours and indeed assisted in raising a regiment for her. The British Legion was a force of 10,000 British military volunteers funded and paid by the Spanish crown. These British soldiers were placed under the command of Espartero. Espartero went on to become Prime Minister of Spain in 1840 and ruled the country with an iron fist for two years. Having a British officer travelling throughout Spain, either on a personal trip or to report back to Whitehall was of clear benefit to Britain. He travels to Barcelona from Toulouse, France in September of 1840. There, he meets a Colonel Clarke of the British Legion who has with him 150 Dragoons and a brigade of legionnaires. He makes reference to Espartero receiving a civic crown: Espartero received a civic crown of delicately wrought gold and placed it on the colours of the 'Esparterists' present - 13,000 men of his army they are all well made muscular, fine men fit for army service. He dines with a newspaperman, commenting: Moor who writes for the morning chronicle has £5.00 [ ] - he accompanied the army - as a favourite of Espartero often dined with him - has been in some actions with him and has decorations displayed - has seven or eight but the [ ] Major of one of the Reg'ts has some 13 I think !!! He met others in positions of authority or influence as well: the American Consul in Barcelona Mr McCulloch - splendid house, dining [ ], bad champagne, tolerable sherry, bad port. At Taragonna he sketches the harbour including a ship under sail. notes crops grown in areas along coast. He describes one village as a vile place. Another area is described as : A dusty bad road - no view - no beauty. The populace poor, ragged and ugly - not one good-looking woman ... terribly dull place, cheap houses. There is a 2-page ink and pencil sketch of Alicante, with the Santa Barbara Castle on the cliff above and a description of the harbour. He refers to Sir John Murray and his defeat of the French General Suchet at the battle of Castallia (Apr 1813) and then goes on to comment on Murray's disastrous attempt to take Tarragonna in June of that same year. He comments on the quality of Spanish troops he encounters - very poor. His journey takes him south to Cartagena and Almeria - and includes 2 excellent ink and pencil sketches. His descriptions of these cities are detailed but quite disparaging - possibly reflecting both his class origins in Britain and his rank as a British officer travelling in country won by Wellington in the Peninsular War. There are 2 excellent drawings of the port of Malaga. He provides a detailed description of what he sees and experiences in Grenada, the Generalife and the stunning Alhambra palace: "The whole is beyond all description". There are drawings of a number of notable locations in Granada. he frequently notes formations of Spanish troops: 10th Cordova Regiment review 3000 national guard ... some fine men ... well skilled ... Captain Jml Llamos reviews From Grenada, he carries on inland: the approach to Jaen is most beautiful, lengthy, gentle slopes covered with superb hues. Further west, he passes villages where battles were fought in the Peninsular Campaign: The French General was a coward. He surrendered to half his number… In Cordova, he mentions of Espartero again: Espartero began his influence successfully by shooting half a dozen colonels for cowardice. In Cadiz, he noted that Espartero was present for a review of 2,500 troops, accompanied by a few well mounted, well looking lancers and about 40 lancers of the Horse Volunteers Also in Cadiz, in December of 1840, he notes the arrival of the Captain General of Andalusia: Captain General of Andalusia here from Sevilla in anticipation of some disturbances of the Election which begins tomorrow. He noted as well that a French frigate came in to the harbour during the election. This is an utterly fascinating, first-hand account of travels during the turbulent 1840's in Spain. It is a gold mine for historians, especially those studying the Napoleonic Wars or Spain and Britain in the 1840s. Whether from a military or social history perspective, Hermans' notebook offers a rich source of first-hand observations. The ink and pencil drawings carry an evocative power of their own. There is a sense of places frozen in place, giving them a timeless existence. The constant revolutions and struggles between the traditional forces that supported an authoritarian government and a growing liberal faction were of keen interest to Britain as she had a long-standing ally in neighbouring Portugal. This turmoil was to continue in one form or another into the 20th century culminating with the brutal dictator Francisco France. It wouldn't be until the late 20th century that Spain and the Spanish people would see true democratic freedom.

Title: 1840 ORIGINAL SIGNIFICANT MANUSCRIPT DIARY OF A BRITISH ARMY OFFICER'S [WHO MAY VERY WELL HAVE BEEN A SPY] TOUR OF ENGLAND'S OLD FOE AT A TIME OF CHAOS AND COOPERATION

Author Name: CAPTAIN H. HERMAN

Illustrator: /

Categories: 19th Century Manuscript, Books and Manuscripts General Overview, 19th Century Diary,

Publisher: BARCELONA MADRID SEVILLE SPAIN, 1840

Book Condition: Good-

Type: Manuscript

Size: 12mo - over 6¾" - 7¾" tall

Seller ID: 0007018

Keywords: KEYWORDS: HISTORY OF, CAPTAIN H. HERMAN; NAPOLEONIC WARS; PENINSULAR WAR; DUKE OF WELLINGTON; ESPIONAGE, BALDEMERO ESPATERO; CARLIST WARS; ISABELLA II; FRANCISCO FRANCO; BRITISH LEGION; BARCELONA; SEVILLE; CADIZ, ESPANIA, SPANISH PENINSULA, ENGLAND, POST TRAFALGER, ESPANOL, PORTUGAL, HANDWRITTEN, MANUSCRIPT, DOCUMENT, LETTER, AUTOGRAPH, WRITER, HAND WRITTEN, DOCUMENTS, SIGNED, LETTERS, MANUSCRIPTS, DIARY, DIARIES, JOURNALS, PERSONAL HISTORY, SOCIAL HISTORY, HISTORICAL, HOLOGRAPH, WRITERS, AUTOGRAPHS, PERSONAL, MEMOIR, MEMORIAL, ANTIQUITÉ, CONTRAT, VÉLIN, DOCUMENT, MANUSCRIT, PAPIER ANTIKE, BRIEF, PERGAMENT, DOKUMENT, MANUSKRIPT, PAPIER OGGETTO D'ANTIQUARIATO, ATTO, VELINA, DOCUMENTO, MANOSCRITTO, CARTA ANTIGÜEDAD, HECHO, VITELA, DOCUMENTO, MANUSCRITO, PAPEL