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OPENING Or THE SEVEN YEARS' WAR.   93

did not himself rob his king and his country, but he took little pains to prevent others doing so. S

One of the worst of these cheats was the Bigot. intendant, Bigot. He was a clever man, with a witty tongue and a gracious manner, and the people liked him; but his devices for making money were endless and shameless. He bribed the officers at different posts to say that they had received goods which he had really taken for his own use; he bought up the king's stores at a low price, and sold them back for the public .service at a high one; he forced the farmers to sell their wheat to him below its value, and then sold it at an immense profit. While those he robbed were starving, he lived like a prince, and wasted his ill-gotten gains in gambling. But after Canada was lost to France, Bigot was tried by the French authorities and was put in prison for his crimes.

The first thing Montcalm did was to attack Oswego. Oswego, which, after a few days' siege,.he took, with a large. number of prisoners and much booty. To please the Iroquois the fort was pulled down, and Johnson had great trouble to prevent their going over to the French.

Fort William Fort William Henry was the next to fall. Henry, Early in 1757 the French tried to take it by surprise, but failed. Its defenders asked for help, but Loudon, busy getting ready for an attack on Louisbourg (which was never made), sent few troops to their aid. When the French returned, smallpox had broken out at Fort William Henry, and its commander surrendered on condition that his men should be allowed to go to another British fort. But with Montcalm were many hundred Indians, and they fell suddenly on the disarmed Englishmen and brutally murdered more than fifty of them. Montcalm did his utmost to save them,


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