Bound memoirs of Major General Sir George Ridout Bingham – £7000 at Halls.

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Then in October 1815 he escorted Napoleon Bonaparte to his exile on St Helena, where Bingham served as the island’s commanding officer until 1819.

On his return to England he found that his recently deceased mother had kept the letters that he had sent over the years and, with time on his hands, he used them to put together an account of the events of a single year, from April 1809, “…when we landed on the banks of the Tagus”, to the end of March 1810.

“It embraces three very interesting points,” he wrote, “…the campaign in the north of Portugal, with the expulsion of Marshal Soult from that country, and the rapid return of the army to Abrantes; the advance to Talavera, the sanguinary contest at that place, and the retreat of the army to the neighbourhood of Badajoz after it; and lastly the long winter march from the banks of the Guadiana to the northern frontiers of Portugal.”

Running to over 160pp and some 32,000 words, his bound manuscript made £7000 online in the January 12 sale held by Halls (20% buyer’s premium) of Shrewsbury.