Rudolf Erich Raspe: Gulliver revived, London 1786 (R3)

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I could not indeed have received a more agreeable present, nor a more ominous one at the opening of that campaign, in which I made my apprenticeship as a soldier. A horse so gentle, so spirited, and so fierce—at once a lamb and a Bucephalus, put me always in mind of the soldierʼs and the gentlemanʼs duty, of young Alexander and of the astonishing things he performed in the field.

We took the field, among several other reasons it seems, with an intention to retrieve the character of the Russian arms, which had been blemished a little by Czar Peterʼs last campaign on the Pruth: and this we fully accomplished by several very fatiguing and glorious campaigns under the command of that great general I mentioned before.

Modesty forbids individuals, to arrogate to themselves great successes or victories, the glory of which is generally engrossed by the commander, nay, which is rather awkward, by kings and queens, who never smelt gun-powder, but at the field days and reviews of their troops, never saw a field of battle or an enemy in battle array.

Nor do I claim any particular share of glory in the great engagements with the enemy. We all did our duty, which, in the patriots, soldiers, and gentlemanʼs language, is a very comprehensive word of great honour, meaning and import, and of which the generality of idle quidnuncs and coffee-house politicians, can hardly form any but a very mean and contemptible idea. However, having had the command of a body of huzars, I have been on several expeditions, with discretionary powers; and the success I then met with, is, I think, fairly, and only to be put to my account, and to that of the brave fellows whom I led to conquest and to victory.

R3, S. 33-36



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