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[104] the green flag, ornamented with a golden harp, floating in their midst. They arrive, shouting vociferously and displaying all that vivacity and dash for which the children of this ancient warlike race are noted when marching to battle. Their comrades, on finding themselves thus supported, respond with loud hurrahs, by which they seek to gain fresh courage. In the mean time, the enemy has re-formed his ranks, and is again in motion; but instead of a routed crowd he beholds a body of resolute troops, who seem to be calmly waiting for him on the slopes situated on the other side of the ravine. At this sight he hesitates, and approaching night puts an end to the sanguinary struggle.

The losses were heavy on both sides. Out of thirty-five thousand men engaged, the Federals had nearly seven thousand killed or wounded. The assailants suffered even more, but they had achieved a signal victory. Twenty-two guns, a large number of prisoners, and most of the wounded, abandoned by the enemy on the field of battle, afforded substantial proof of their success. Their opponents had fought with great vigor, and it was no disgrace to Porter's soldiers that they had to succumb in such an unequal struggle. Besides, the success of the Confederates was not so decisive as they at first imagined. The resistance made by the Federals at Gaines' Mill, and their inaction on the other side of the Chickahominy, had led Lee and his generals to believe that they had just beaten the largest portion of the army of the Potomac, and that by driving it back to the river they had completely turned it by their manoeuvres. Convinced that they had cut off the Federals from their only line of retreat, they already fancied that McClellan, hemmed in among the marshes of the Chickahominy and White Oak Swamp, was about to capitulate with all his forces, or that the great army of invasion, harassed on every side, exhausted by fatigue and hunger, would dissolve before them like a storm-cloud after thunder.

While they were preparing to gather the fruits of their victory, the Federals were collecting together and counting their numbers. Generals and colonels were trying to rally the scattered fragments of their brigades and regiments. Then, when order was completely restored, battalion after battalion passed over the Alexander bridge, occupied by a squadron of cavalry, which, during

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