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WEDNESDAY, JULY 3, 1872. .


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THE SIEGE OF PARIS AND GENERAL VINOY. Military publications on the various sieges and cam-, paigns of the late war seem never to be coming to an end. This time it is General Vinoy who has relinquished the sword for the pen. and the siege of Paris is the subject of his theme. This book, however, is above the common run. The author. General Vinoy, having been despatched to assist MacMahon in the fatal attempt to relieve Metz, was fortunate enough to save his corps from the ruin of Sedan -by a retreat from Mezicres, planned and executed with ability and vigour; and he afterwards took an active part- though it has been thought one not sufficiently promi- nent, regard being had to his reputation—in the memo. rable and protracted defence of Paris. His-book sets forth in minute detail his experiences of these momentous events, and makes weighty reflections upon them; and in some reSpects it not only adds a good deal to our previous information, but suggests questions of much importance and interest to the military student. It especially throwa « amear light on the incidents of the 31st of August, the last day of grace for the French army before the catas- trophe of Sedan; it goes far to shew that escape was possible to tha doomed host for many hours had it been boldly and intelligently led and it proves what we believo is certain, that the fatal errorof accepting battle should not be charged on Napoleon III. As for the defence of Paris, it clears up several passages in that strange drama of war with sound military judgment and knowledge, particularly in the eases of the various sorties and the plan of passive defence that was earned on for so long. During the first few weeks of the siege the General commanded tho 13th Corps ia front of the southern fort in the post of honour. The General thinks too much time was soent in the drilling of the forces in Paris. In circumstances like these," he says, every hour of delay Was ruinous to us; and the inaction of the month of November, in a military point of view, was most unfortunate, as the course of events too clearly shewed. At the beginning of the siege it may be said that Paris had no army to defend her; she had a brave'1 and good on& by November; the great question was to know how to make use of it." Vinoy praises the endeavours to break through at Champigny, but blames Trochu's project of a sortie to the north. He had but little hope of a decisive success. The National Guards, especially lhose who gloried in the name of Reds," come in for a lion's share of sarcasm. The General thus describes the "boseigers' defences at the time of the clpitulation To fortify their triple line of investment, the Prussians, had made use of crenellated walls, and of abattis, for which they seem to have had a special prediloction; at some places, too, they had made intrenchments and thrown up redoubts. The parapets of their redoubts had nearly the same profiles as ours, and differed in a few respects only. Thfe epaulements of their batteries were net so thick as those in the case of French artillery: and, speaking gene- rally, their works were more rude and less finished than ours, but they were well-designed, and, perhaps, more prao- tically useful. They had availed themselves with great skill of any advantages afforded by the nature and the varieties of the ground in many places; and their batteries were almost always raised on good sites."

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