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THE BATTLE OF MAJESFONTEIN


On Sunday, the 10th of December, Lord Methuen, having completed his plans, moved forward from his position for the momentous fight, which was not only  to  decide the fate of Kimberley, but determine the attitude of the waverers among the Dutch, of which there were now very many. The Boers occupied a wide crescent-shaped front, extending some six miles from the hills on the west  of the railway at Spyfontein to the kopjes on the east of the Kimberley road at Majesfontein.

The northern portion of the position consisted of a kopje about three miles long, and the southern end terminated in a high hill  which was looked upon as the key to the position. Towards these rugged kopjes the veldt sloped gently upwards from the river a distance of five miles, and though from afar this plain seemed to face the ridge of hills spreading  from east to west, it in reality penetrated wedgewise into the boulder-strewn area. Some one described the great Boer position as the end of a pocket, a veritable cul de sac, doubtless lined with Boer guns and Boer trenches-the  jaws of a dragon, in fact.

Orders were given that this stronghold was to be bombarded, and from 4.50 P.M. to 6.30 P.M. the guns, including the Naval 4.7-inch, played over kopjes and trenches with accuracy, and, it was  thought, with deadly effect. The operation was carried on with precision and perseverance as long as a gleam of daylight lasted, but no response was elicited from the enemy, who carefully concealed their very existence. At  night a tremendous downpour of rain descended and saturated the troops, who were bivouacking where they were, some 4000 yards in front of the Majesfontein position, thus rendering their already uncomfortable situation more  uncomfortable still. But this was merely an item in the misfortunes they were shortly destined to endure.

The general plan was for the Highland Brigade, supported by guns, to assault the southern end of the kopje, their right  and rear being protected by the Guards Brigade. According to Lord Methuen's despatch, it seems that before moving off Major-General Wauchope explained all that was to be done, and the particular part each battalion was to play  in the scheme: namely, that they were to march direct on the south-west spur of the kopje, and on arrival near the objective before daybreak the Black Watch were to move to the east of the kopje, where he believed the enemy to  be posted under shelter, while the Seaforth Highlanders were to march straight to the south-east point of the kopje, with the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders prolonging the line to the left; the Highland Light Infantry to be  in reserve until the action was developed. The brigade was to march in mass of quarter columns, the four battalions keeping touch, and, if necessary, ropes were to be used for the left guides. The three battalions were to  extend just before daybreak, two companies in firing line, two companies in support, and four companies in reserve, all at five paces interval between them.

Soon after midnight the march began. The distance was only two and a  half miles, and daybreak was due about 3.25 A.M. But the gruesome night rendered the progress of the troops unusually slow. Rain came down in torrents, thunder growled, lightning played over the hill, glinted on rifles, and  disorganised the compasses by which Major- Benson was steering his course. Towards dawn the gloom of Erebus seemed to deepen rather than lift, and in the obscurity they must have been quite unaware of the exceedingly close  proximity of the enemy, for the Highland Brigade-in the following order, Black Watch, Seaforths, Argyll and Sutherland and Highland Light Infantry-continued to approach in quarter column though within some two hundred yards of  the Boer entrenchments. It was imagined that the Dutchmen were in force on a kopje on the other side of the veldt, and not a soul suspected the existence of the formidable line of intrenchments on which our soldiers were gaily  . advancing. Before they could discover their mistake they were greeted by the Dutchmen-who had allowed the brigade to approach without showing any signs of life-with a raking fire on their flanks. The whole hill seemed on the  instant to become alive with the roar of musketry. Fire vomited as from a live volcano at their very feet. A moment before they had seen only a dark barrier of bush and shrub, and then, flash! the earth yawned, crackled, and  emitted the flame of hell.

So seemed to them the sudden conflagration in that first, awful moment. They started back, a confused, congested mass, with death in their midst. Their Colonel then ordered the Seaforths to fix  bayonets and charge. The officers commanding other battalions followed suit. At this moment, darkness still reigning, some one called "Retire." There was a rush, many hurrying and hustling off to obey one order, while  others were still charging forwards to obey the other. The confusion was intense, dead men dropping thick as autimin leaves, bullets whirring, shouts, orders conflicting orders-ringing out on every side For some seconds the  rout of the gallant Righianders seemed to be imminent. Their retirement, however, was due mainly to sudden panic, the consternation and amazement at the murderous outburst, blazing as it did in the dim deceitful dusk, from the  unsuspected trenches. These, it must be owned, were most skilfully concealed at the foot of a series of kopjes. They were screened from sight by a tangle of brushwood and scrub, while round the glacis of the trenches was  crinkled a triple line of barbed wire. When, therefore, a deadly furnace broke from this tangle, the troops were aghast. For the first moment the superb crowd, unduly huddled together and helpless, threatened to become  disorganised, but it was only for a moment. The Highlanders retired some 200 yards, and then they instantly formed up, such as were left of them, for out of two companies of the Black Watch only fifty men escaped. A more tragic  scene than that at the onset of the battle cannot be conceived. From all directions came an avalanche of lead, sweeping south and east and west in the gloaming, and flecking the whole visible universe with red. Cries and groans  and curses and shouts intermingled with orders innumerable. "Advance," shouted some one; " Retire," called another; "Fix bayonets," cried a third; "Charge," roared a fourth. Meanwhile  Seaforths and Black Watch, scrambling and tripping over the bodies of fallen comrades, were pressing on through the high wire entanglements, tearing their already excoriated legs, and struggling for the enemy's trenches. Here  fell their gallant leader, dauntless Wauchope-fell never to rise again. But dying he cheered on the men of the Black Watch by his side. "Good-bye, men," he called to them with his last breath; "fight for  yourselves-it is man to man now. And they did fight, struggling over and over again to make their way to the trenches in spite of the menace of almost certain death. Valiantly they held their ground, availing themselves of such  cover as there was, bushes and scrub that were dotted here and there, and returning to the deadly greetings of the Mausers no mean reply. At this time the avalanche of buzzing, whirring, death-dealing lead was enough to make  the stoutest heart quail, but the officers were seen marching boldly forward, and where they led-veritably into the jaws of death-there their loyal Highlanders followed. Meanwhile, so soon as it was light enough to see, the  artillery had come to the rescue, and so remarkable were its performances that even the enemy ~onfessed that on this day they had suffered greater loss than at any other time during the war. The howitzer battery was placed  directly in front of the position, and poured forth a terrible fire over the whole face of the hill. Lyddite shells sped snorting into the trenches, and, with a terrific detonation, shot up the earth in clouds. One destroyed a  laager on the kopje, others did fearful execution, striking the hard rocks and boulders, and spreading devastation far and wide. But still the enemy failed to budge from their strong entrenchments. The 62nd and i8th Field  Batteries, under Majors Grant and Scott respectively, took up a position behind the Highlanders, sending shell after shell into the enemy's position with such amazing accuracy that the Boer numbers were considerably thinned.  During this feat they were assailed with a scourging storm of lead from the whole line of intrenchments. The Boers displayed more than their ordinary courage, standing upright in their trenches, and sometimes advancing, the  better to aim at the aggressive " men-women," as they called the kilted warriors, though at other times they completely hid themselves and fired wildly, in consequence of holding their guns above the level of their  heads. The Brigade, nevertheless, advanced to within 300 yards of the enemy, where they pluckily held their position in the teeth of galling fire for some hours. Both their tenacity and their dash were astounding, for the  volleys of the enemy were accurate and persistent, and sufficiently deadly to demoralise the most veteran troops in the world. The Boers, having been reinforced during the engagement, their number had now mounted to some 18,ooo  men. Lye-witnesses have described this, his fourth fight, as quite the stiffest on Lord Methuen's record, and have declared that the obstinate resistance of the Highland Brigade, and the magnificent cool-ness and daring of its  officers, quite equalled the most splendid deeds of British history. The Brigade about noon was reinforced by the Gordons, and these, as they advanced towards the wire-girded trenches, were exposed to a terrific cross-fire from  the enemy, their route having taken them past a Boer trench from which the concealed foe promptly assailed them, and they found themselves literally battered by volleys in front, flank, and rear.

The Guards Brigade meanwhile  were taking a heavy share of the work. They occupied the centre and right, moving due north over a level plain which was shelled by the Boers from the ridges. The extreme right rested on the river, where the Yorkshire Light  Infantry, under a tremendous fire, held the drift. These clung tenaciously to their position throughout the day, even after all their ammunition was exhausted. They fired in all some 7000 rounds, inflicting terrible damage and  losing only ten wounded.

About two o'clock, after the enemy had been reinforced, the firing, which had temporarily slackened, began again with stertorous uproar. The air was thick with projectiles dealing death and mutilation  on every side. Then it was that the real disaster of the day occurred. The portions of the shattered Highland Brigade, which, in spite of the shock to its numbers, had stuck manfully to its terrific duty, suddenly became  disorganised. As a matter of fact, though it was not at the moment recognised, nearly all its officers had fallen. A few minutes later and they retired, by whose order none knows. The order was given. No shoutmg of  counter-orders could rally them; and indeed how could it, since the revered familiar voices of their commanders were silent, some of them perhaps never to be heard again! Major Ewart, Brigade-Major of the Highlanders, rode up  with an order-almost an entreaty, some say-from the commanding officer to the effect that all he asked of the Brigade was to hold the position till dark. But the officer in this desperate situation could actually find no other  to help him to repeat the command to the scattered remnant, and he was thankful for the assistance of Colonel Dawney, who, as a civilian, was surveying the battle from Horse Artillery Hill. Eventually a rally was effected, and  the brigade, stiffened and supported by the Scots Guards, got back to the guns; but their nerve was shattered by the terrific experiences of the morning, by the losses they had sustained, and by the disappointment of being  unable to fulfil the glorious expectations which the renowned Highland Brigade has ever encouraged and ever nobly fulfilled.

It will serve no purpose to dwell further on the miserable details of mighty effort wasted, splendid  lives sacrificed, and gallant hearts crushed by mischance. There are moments when, like the Oriental, one can but lift helpless hands to the Unseen and cry

Kismet !

While the engagement was going forward, Major-General  Pole-Carew sent an armoured train, under cover of a Naval gun, within 2500 yards of the Boer position. This gun during the whole day, whenever occasion required, made itself prominent by its magnificent practice, firing lyddite  shells behind the main ridge, and searching kopjes, trenches, and laager wi~h amazing accuracy. For instance, at one moment a train of bullocks drawing guns was seen by the Naval Brigade-in the next the whole affair had ceased  to exist! In the same summary way the Guards dealt with the foe. They came on a picket of some forty Boers, who had been left for purposes of observation, and in shorter time than it would take to tell the tale the whole party  were killed, wounded, or taken prisoners. The troops held their own in front of the enemy, entirely clearing them out of the upper intrenchments until darkness put a stop to the operations. This was another of the day's  misfortunes, for at the very hour of dusk the Boers were deciding to evacuate their position. Then our troops intrenched themselves in face of the Boer position. But finally, on the following day, they had to retire to Modder  River on account of the scarcity of water.

Nearly all the loss was borne by the Highland Brigade, who lost fifty-three officers either killed, wounded, or missing, and a total of 650 of all ranks. Our line was three and a  half miles long, while that of the Boers was almost double. The loss of the enemy in mounted infantry was enormous, and their Scandinavian commando of eighty strong, which, under Baron Faderscwold, had been removed from  Mafeking, was entirely destroyed, every man being killed or wounded except seven, who were taken prisoners.

There seems to be litle doubt that Lord Methuen's ill-success was largely due to treachery, for in the course of the  battle an officer detected a Cape Dutchman on the left rear in the act of exchanging signals with the Boers. In fact, much of the information supplied both to General Gatacre and General Methuen was found to be deliberately  false, and it was known that the districts through which they had to pass were seething with disaffection. For this reason most probably this glorious and desperate fight proved a drawn battle, but there were, of course, other  possible causes to be considered. Lord Methuen had advanced from De Aar with a brilliant army which had already acquitted itself nobly, though with great loss, in three battles, against an enemy entrenched in stony hills. With  his thinned force of some 8ooo men he now hurled himself against troops which not only had been greatly reinforced, but were situated behind complicated earthworks miles in length, built on the most approved system of modern  tactics.

In regard to strategy, there was no doubt that the Boers haa scored. They had been lying in wait fully aware of our plans, and had the approach of the troops signalled to them by means of a lantern fixed high on the  hills. The Highlanders were fairly at their mercy. By the time the shouts and orders and counter-orders had rung out, those who had uttered them were dead or dying, and many who were left were rushing-rushing and dropping to  get out of the fiery furnace into which they had been led. It must be remembered that on that day there was no artillery preparation; the heights had not been searched, and the enemy was master of the field. The artillery  operated later in the morning but after the first momentary retirement the Brigade of its own accord formed up, consigned itself again to the hell of flame and death, and there stuck as targets for the enemy till midday.

In  the official despatch occurs the line, "I attach no blame to. this splendid brigade." Fortunately there is none among the great multitude to whom the story of the tragic affair is known who would dream of associating  the word blame with the glorious band who so grievously have suffered. Where the blame rests it is not for the civilian to say. Indeed the exact facts of the matter can never be known, as the two dead heroes most concerned  cannot speak, and those who live can never argue with certainty of facts occurring in the turmoil of battle. In reference to the Brigade Lord Methuen said

"I have made use of Lieutenant-Colonel Hughes Hallett's report  (the acting Brigadier) for the description of the part the Highland Brigade took in this action. Major-General Wauchope told me, when asked him the question, on the evening of the 10th, that he quite understood his orders, and  made no further remark. He died. at the head of the brigade, in which his name will always remain honoured and respected. His high mi!itary reputation and attainments disarm all criticism. Every soldier in my division deplores  the loss of a fine soldier and a true comrade. The attack failed; the inclement weather was against success; the men in the Highland Brigade were ready enough to rally, but the paucity 0f officers and non-commissioned officers  rendered this no easy matter. I attach no blame to this splendid brigade."

Examples of individual daring and individual self-abnegation during this glorious though ineffectual fight were too numerous to be quoted. The  Medical Staff for instance, exposed themselves with a persistence that was truly marvellous, succouring the injured and carrying them off to shelter, till in some instances they themselves were shot. Very tragic was the state  of the gallant wounded, the bravest of the brave, who had dared to advance too near the trenches, for these in the wretched plight could not even enjoy the medical attention lavished on the others, as no sooner were the doctors  seen to be approaching them than a storm of fire was immediately sent in their direction. The patience of the sufferers was at times more than heroic. Notwithstanding their agonies and the horrible pangs of thirst that are the  inevitable result of wounds, some, knowing that water was too scarce to go round, would not consent to do more than moisten their lips from the water-bottle offered them, while others hid the fact of their being wounded, so as  not to absorb attention from those more in need of it than themselves.

The Marquis of Winchester was one of those who fell nobly. For the most part of the day he seemed to have a charmed life, and though bullets whizzed  through his helmet and round his ears, he moved fearlessly among his men instructing each as to the direction in which he should fire. At last, however, came the fatal shot which pierced his spine and laid him low.

The  gallant colonel of the Gordons, Colonel Downman, was seen shouting on his men till a bullet dealt him a mortal wound. Another Scottish hero, a private, was heard wildly remonstrating as the stretcher-bearers tried to remove him  from the field. His ankle was smashed, but he still roared that he had been wounded for twelve hours, and had been fighting all the while, and was still as fit as any man in the army!

He was not alone in his valour, for  instances of remarkable gallantry occurred on every side. Sergeant Gash (Kimington's Horse) singly assisted a wounded man, sticking to him under a heavy fire till the poor fellow was placed out of harm's way, and Lieutenant  Riley (Yorkshire Light Infantry) bore on his back a man of the Mounted Infantry while covered by Sergeant Cassen and Privates Bennett and Mawhood. The reason why so many officers fell may be attributed to the fact that the  Boers employed sharpshooters who walked coolly about lifting their field-glasses and picking off such persons as appeared in any way conspicuous. The prominence of the officers, however, was not due to peculiarity in their  uniforms, they having discarded swords, revolvers, and belts, and adopted kharki aprons over their kilts. One of the Seaforth Highlanders wrote pathetically of the awful day's work. He said

"We were in quarter~column of  companies in line-that is, we were offering a front of; say, 50 yards-and immediately behind, following in double ranks, were company after company of the Highland Brigade, of; say, 3500 men. Suddenly the whole hillside was one  mass of flame, and the Seaforths, leading, received a discharge of rifle-fire from over i6,ooo Boers. It was awful. Talk about 'hell '-the hillside was one continuous line of fire. We immediately scattered and spread one in  lines right and left. . . . Monday's work was a huge blunder, and who is to blame I do not know; but there is no doubt the Highland Brigade were led like lambs to the slaughter. We were led more as if we were on a Volunteer  review at Hyde Park. We had a sorrowful job on Tuesday night. We had fifty-three dead brought in and buried. You could hear nothing but the wailing of the pibrochs as the Highlanders were buried."

A colour-sergeant of  the 2nd Black Watch writing from hospital thus described the moments when the unlucky Brigade which had stood gloriously against the terrific shock first became disorganised

" The brigade was moving in mass of  quarter~column, with a few mounted scouts in front and our battalion leading the Brigade. We had to file through a narrow part and form up as we got through, and when my company got to its place I could see the dim outline of  the bill in front, and thought we were in a very dangerous place if the enemy, as I thought, occupied it, for it was tbe extreme left of their position, and therefore they were bound to strongly hold the flank. However, the  brigade formed up nicely on the open ground, and a lamp that was shining on the left on a prominent spur was put out. 5imultaneously the whole of the hillside was lit up with the most damnable discharge of rifles, &c., that  any one can possibly imagine. They seemed to be formed up in tiers all up the hillside, and were pouring magazine fire into us at a terrific rate. Then came all sorts of shouts-' Lie down,' 'Charge,' 'Extend,' &c., and of  the whole brigade there was only the front rank of A Company of ours that could have used their rifles, as everybody else was straight in rear of them. Well, two companies in front did charge, but were stopped by barbed wire  fences and entanglements fifteen yards from the trenches and mostly shot down. Others broke to right and left or retired, and after waiting about a minute for a bullet to hit me, as it appeared impossible to escape one, and as  it did not arrive, I thought perhaps it was advisable to go with the remainder. I walked away to the right, still expecting one, but they were all going too high, and it was not yet light. I got clear away and discovered a mob  of excited soldiers of all regiments, and with Captain Cameron we tried to get them together, but they had lost their head, and several Boers who had moved out of the trenches to get round our flank happe~ing to fire in this  direction, they became disorganised. It was then daylight before sunrise. The Boers, moving smartly, then showered us with bullets, and many were bowled over. I walked along quite casually, shouting to one and another to take  cover and keep cool, and I was once followed about 200 yards by quite an accompaniment of bullets, I should say about twelve keeping it up; but as they were evidently aiming at me, none hit me. Slowly getting back with any  amount dropping, I lost sight eventually of these persevering gentlemen, when another alarm came from a fresh direction. Thinking possibly it was some of our own troops, I lay down behind an ant-heap facing the direction,  loaded my rifle, and waited to be certain before firing. I did not fire, however, as at that moment somebody hit me on the back of the neck with a bar of iron weighing two tons and a half, for so it seemed to me; it quite  numbed me for a few seconds, and a chap who had lain down beside me shouted he was shot and began to howl, upon which I politely asked him to shut up and get it bandaged, and I then moved away to find out where they were  forming up. Affer half an hour my equipment became too heavy for nie, and meeting a stretcher-bearer he took it off and bandaged me up. The bullet had entered the left side of my neck, and, taking a downward course, passed  through the neck and out at the back of the right shoulder. I was then conducted to the ambulance and away to hospital, and on my way down saw the Gordons marching up from the baggage to take a part in it, but the artillery had  been working away for two or three hours then."

Could any troops, officerless, unhinged, riddled through and through, instantly gather themselves together with sufficient force to hold out against a foe flushed with  triumph and intoxicated with success? Impossible! Students of Napier may recall the description of the panic to the Light Division in the middle of the night, when no enemy was near, and may understand how the bravest and most  warlike troops, when exposed to unexpected and unknown danger, have shrunk back in dismay. On the occasion referred to some one called out "A mine!" and such was the force of the shock to the imagination that  "the troops who had not been stopped by the strong barrier, the deep ditch, the high walls, and the deadly fire of the enemy, staggered back appalled by a chimera of their own raising." If this result can have been  effected by a chimera, how then could anything else be expected by a real shock, a tangible shock, such as the gallant Brigade suffered in that dark hour of horror and despair? It is difficult for the outsider within the  protecting walls of home to realise the awful moments, each long as a lifetime, through which these noble fellows passed-moments full of heroism as they were full of pathos! For instance, when the clamour of the shrub farther  back, and affer I had been at it some time, on looking up found myself right in front of another intrenchment of the enemy. They sent a few rounds at me, but they struck just in front and ricochetted over my head. After a bit,  it getting darker, I got up and walked back, and there was nothing but dead Highlanders all over the place."

Can anything be more pathetic than these rough outlines of the tragic scene where so many valiant souls  sacrificed their lives without a chance to win for themselves even the shroud of glory? Truly in this surprisingly-fought yet disastrous battle-"A thousand glorious actions that might claim

Triumphant laurels and  immortal fame, Confused in crowds of gallant actions lie, And troops of heroes undistinguished lie."

Dim, as the dawn of that dire December morning, is our know-ledge of the real agony of those appalling moments, the  absolute magnificence of these human souls who were ordered to march to the grave as surely as was the Light Brigade at Balaclava. For though Balaclava was a scene of triumph and Majesfontein was one of misery, both brigades  started gloriously forth, and both were martyrs to a mistake. If ever monument should be erected to the brave Scottish dead who were sacrificed at Majesfontein, these four words should be carved thereon, that all who hereafter  may read of their high failure may remember also, that this failure was entirely due to the tragic fact that "Some one had blundered."

The picture of disaster given by the Daily News was heart-breaking :-

"General Wauchope was down, riddled with bullets; yet gasping, dying, bleeding from every vein, the Highland chieftain raised himself on his hands and knees and cheered his men forward. Men and officers fell in heaps  together. The Black Watch charged, and the Gordons and the Seaforths, with a yell that stirred the British camp below, rushed onward-onward to death or disaster. The accursed wires caught them round the legs until they  floundered, like trapped wolves, and all the time the rifles of the foe sang the song of death in their ears Then they fell back, broken and beaten, leaving nearly 1300 dead and wounded."

Yes; dead and wounded-for many  of the latter even remained there till morning. Among these was poor young Wauchope, the soul of g~lantry. He was hit in four places, and lay for hours in the bitterly cold night glued to the ground in his own gore. He was not  picked up till dawn. But gruesome as was his position, he was in the company of heroes. Round and about were the most splendid fellows that had ever worn kilt; Colonel Coode, and brave brilliant MacFarlan, the Adjutant of the  Black Watch, who, times and again, rallied not only his men, but any stragglers who could be got to follow his dauntless lead. And beyond all these, close in the teeth of the enemy, was the glorious General, the intrepid  warrior, who, after distinguishing himself in many battlefields, in the shambles of Majesfontein "foremost fighting fell."

No word, no lament, can sufficiently express the mourning of the nation. Of him only can we  say, as was said of Sir John Moore at Coruna, "If glory be a distinction, for such a man death is not a leveller!" Neither for such a man is there any death! Though his dust. may mingle with the dust of the veldt, his  actions must stand out for all time, and remind his countrymen that of such glorious, immemorial dust the British Empire has been built!

General Wauchope was born in 1846, and entered the army in 1865; was Lieutenant in 1867,  Captain in 1878, Major in 1884, Brevet-Lieutenant-Colonel the same year, Colonel in i888, and Major~General in 1898. He served in the Ashanti War in 1873, was slightly wounded in the advance-guard engagement of Jarbinbah, and  severely wounded at the battle of Ordashu. He was mentioned in despatches, and was awarded the medal and clasp.

In the Egyptian War of 1882 he served with the Black Watch, and took part in the battle of Tel-el-Kebir,  receiving medal with clasp and the Khedive's Star. Two years later he was in the Soudan Expedition under Sir Gerald Qraham as D.A.A.G., and was severely wounded at El Teb, receiving the brevet rank of Lieutenant-Colonel and two  clasps for his bravery. In the Nile Expedition of 1884-85 Colonel Wauchope was attached to Major-General Earle' 5 river column, and in the engagement of Kerbekan was again wounde4-this time very severely. At the conclusion of  the campaign he was awarded two clasps. In 1898 he took part in the Soudan Expedition under Lord Kitchener, and led the first British brigade into action at the battle of Omdurman. For his services he was made Major-General,  was awarded the medal and the Khedive's medal with clasps, and received the thanks of Parliament. ~~hen the present war in South Africa began, he was appointed to command the Highland Brigade of Lord Methuen's column.

In the  political sphere Major-General Wauchope distinguished himself also, though he never entered Parliament. He was, however, Mr. Gladstone's opponent in the re-election for Midlothian in 1892. It was a fight which excited the  keenest interest all over Great Britain, and was conducted by Colonel Wauchope with untiring energy. The result was that he reduced the Radical majority from the 4631 of the previous election (of 1885) to 690. He would probably  have been returned in 1895, but he was then once more on the active list of the army. In June 1898 he contested South Ediyiburgh, but lost by a Liberal majority of 831. The news of his death caused a feeling of great distress  in the Scottish capital, and the sorrow among his tenantry in Midlothian was intense.

The following is the list of officers killed and wounded :-

Highland Brigade (Staff)-Killed: Major-General Wauchope. Seriously wounded: Lieutenant Macleod (West Riding Regiment). Wounded: Lieutenant Wauchope (2nd Royal Highlanders), Lieutenant Vaughan (1st York and Lancaster Regiment),  slightly. 2nd Royal Highianders-Killed: Lieut.Colonel Coode, Captain Elton, Lieutenant Edmonds, Capt~n Hon. Cumming Bruce, Captain MacFarlan, Lieutenant Ramsay. Wounded: Major Cuthbertson, Captain Cameron, Lieutenant St. J.  Harvey, Lieutenant Berthon, Lieutenant Tait, Second Lieutenant Bullock, Second Lieutenant Drummond, Second Lieutenant Innes. Slightly wounded: Major Duff, Major Berkeley, Lieutenant J. Harvey. 2nd Seaforth Highlanders-Killed:  Captain J. R. Clark, Lieutenant Cox, Second Lieutenant Cowie, Captain Brodie. Missing: Major K. R. Mackenzie. Wounded : Captain Featberstonhaugh, Lieutenant Chamley, Second Lieutenant Waterhouse (dangerously), Second Lieutenant  Hall, Second Lieutenant Wilson, Second Lieutenant Clive, Second Lieutenant Baillie. 1st Highland Light infantry - Killed: Captain Cowan, Captain Lambton. Wounded: Lieut.-Colonel Kelbam (slightly), Captain Noyes (severely),  Captain Wolfe Murray (slightly), Captain Richardson, Second Lieutenant A. J. Martin, Second Lieutenant Knight, Second Lieutenant Fraser. 1st Argyll and Sutberlond Higblanders-Killed: Lieut.-Colonel Goff. Wounded: Major Robinson  (since died), Lieutenant Graham, Second Lieutenant King, Second Lieutenant Scott (seriously), Captain Campbell (slightly). 1st Gordon Highlanders-Died of wounds: Captain Wingate. Dangerously wounded: Lieut.-Colonel Downman,  Captain W. E. Gordon, Second Lieutenant Campbell. Seriously