was Lieutenant general Heister
brave old man of, nearly sixty, cheerful in disposition, crippled with wounds, of a good understanding, but without genius for war; tenacious of authority, but good natured, bluntly honest, and upright.
Next him stood Lieutenant general Knyphausen
, remarkable for taciturnity and reserve; one of the best officers in the landgrave's service, of rare talents in his profession, with a kindly nature and the accomplishments of a man of honor.
The four major generals
were all of moderate capacities and little military skill.
Of the colonels, every one praised Donop
, who commanded the four battalions of grenadiers and the chasseurs; Rall
, Mingerode, Wurmb
, and Loos, were also highly esteemed; four or five others had served with distinction.
The excuse of the British
ministry for yielding to all the exactions of the landgrave, was their eagerness to obtain the troops early in February. ‘Often,’ wrote Suffolk
, ‘as I have urged expedition, I must repeat it once more, nothing is so much to be guarded against as delay, which will mar the expected advantage.’
The landgrave freely consented that thirteen battalions should be prepared to march on the fifteenth of February; but so inefficient was the British
ministry, so imperfect their concert, that though delay involved the loss of a campaign, the admiralty did not provide transports enough at the time appointed, and even in March could not tell when they would all be ready.
The first detachment from Brunswick
did not sail from England
till the fourth of April, and Riedesel
was at Quebec
before the last