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procuring for several hours. A retreat could not have been attempted under more unfavourable circumstances, The moment that the enemy saw our troops quitting the hill, they rushed in on all sides cutting down the stragglers. The ground was so steep and broken that it was impossible long to preserve order. Whilst descending a steep defile, the Goorkhas knowing the ground, attacked a party in advance, and thus caught our men in a double fire.

They then made their way in on all sides, and using the kookery, committed sad havoc. Lieutenant Thackery, of the 26th N.I., covered the retreat as well as it could be done under the confounding circumstances of the darkness and broken ground, till he and Ensign Wilson were killed with many men.

The detachment, scattered and worn out, reached camp on the morning of the 2nd.

Our loss was severe, but it was not ascertained for several days, being lessened greatly

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by the return of stragglers ; at length it was reduced to four officers killed, five wounded seventy-nine non-commissioned officers and privates killed, and two hundred and eighty-one wounded.

CHAPTER X.

THE WAR CONTINUED.

SIR DAVID OCHTERLONY, who took the field at the same time with Gillespie, was opposed to one of the best officers in the Nepaul army. Umur Sing, in person, formed, from the first, a just estimate of the character of his enemy, and the difficulties he would have to contend with; he, therefore, resolved to proceed with caution, and on the 31st of October, the day Gillespie was killed at Kalunga, he reached Plasseea, situated in a valley within the hills which he entered from the Sutlej by a pass less difficult than those further east. Umur Sing was at this time at Urkee, considerably within the

SURRENDER OF NALAGHUR.

239

hills; they run here in broken ridges, stretching N.N.W., and each ridge affords a series of positions; the outermost ridge was surmounted by the fort of Nalaghur, which, with an outpost, commanded the principle route into the hills. On the next range stood three small forts, above this again towered the heights of Maloun, and near which was the capital of Umur Sing's staunch ally, the Rajah of Belaspore.

Having garrisoned the forts of Nalaghur Hills, and reckoning that Ochterlony would be some time occupied before them, he was in no hurry to leave his position. Sir David, however, resolved on hazarding nothing, invested Nalaghur with his heavy guns on the 1st November; having breached the wall, the garrison surrendered on the 5th. Having established depôts at the captured forts, Sir David proceeded on the 13th against the Ramgurh positions, sending on Colonel Thompson with a brigade one day's march in advance.

The position of Ramgurh was so steep on the sides next the plains, that Sir David

determined to turn it, if possible, and act on its rear; these ridges, it may be observed, are all so many steps to the vast Himalaya snowy range; each, therefore, as it nears that stupendous range, towers over that before it, and as you

look from the plains, the steeper side is always opposed to you. Ramgurh stood nearly in the centre of the ridge, and formed Umur Sing's right; and Ochterlony, in advancing from Nalaghur, turned his left, and in November had seized a point from which he hoped to be able to batter one of the stockades of that wing. By the end of November, after incessant labour, in making roads and dragging up guns, a battery was constructed; but when it opened, the stockade was found to be almost out of

range, and the shots had little effect. Lieutenant Lawtie, the engineer, observing this, advanced with a small party to reconnoitre another point further on; the Goorkhas sallied out to prevent it, and obliged him to seek the shelter of a wall that stood near: his critical situation being perceived, Lieutenant Williams

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