[Peninsular War Deserters Broadside]. Aviso [Notice]. Castalla [Spain]: No Publisher, 1813. First Edition. Folio. Unbound. Broadside. Good+. Single sided printed broadside, approximately 220mm x 315mm in size.
Slightly creased, faint pencil line through top left hand corner of text, couple of tiny chips, undeciphered note in ink to reverse, but generally fairly clean.
Desertion during the Peninsula Wars was a serious problem, Linch in his Desertion from the British Army during the Napoleonic Wars finds that “between 1803 and 1815 there were 77,696 cases of desertion”, though “desertion from British corps primarily occurred in the British Isles”.
A rough translation follows. “Notice. Attentive to some soldiers dependent on the army of S.M.B. that I have the honor of commanding in chief, they desert their flags, and may forget their duty to such an extent, that they prefer to go to the host of the common enemy, rather than bolver to meet those of their legitimate Sovereign; Therefore, all Spanish citizens and civilians who love their homeland and national liberty are invited and exhorted to come forward to persecute these defectors of the British army, on the understanding that in addition to what is recommended for S.M. Las Cortes and S.A. the Regency of the Rayno de las Espanas, a service of this nature, will be rewarded with the amount of twelve heavy pesos for each transfuge or deserter of those on those who present in my quartel general or to the managers of the divisions of the expressed army of my command . In the name and with the order of S.E. the general in general Mr. D. John Murray. Quartel General, Castalla, March 30, 1813”.
Lieutenant General Sir John Murray (c.1768-1827), 8th Baronet, defeated Suchet at the Battle of Castalla on the 13th of April, 1813 (see ODNB); Sir George Charles D’Aguilar (1784-1855), eventually became a Lieutenant General and was knighted (see ODNB).