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Biography of Benedict Arnold


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Arnold, Benedict, born in 1741. American general, a brave but unprincipled man. At fifteen he enlisted in the English army, but soon deserted and adopted a mercantile life. In the Anglo-American War, Arnold took an extremely active part, his skill and gallantry being especially exhibited in the siege of Quebec and the victories of Ridgefield and Bemis. Meanwhile, a party hostile to him had been growing up. His due promotion was deferred, several serious charges were brought against him, the fortunes of the Americans grew worse and worse, and he became affected with the prevalent spirit of desertion. Accordingly, he entered into negotiation with the British commander, and treacherously asked and obtained the command of West Point, with the intention of surrendering it to the enemy. The capture of Andre betrayed his duplicity, and the traitor fled in disgrace to the English army at New York. Here he was appointed brigadier-general, and after serving against his countrymen, retired to London. Died, 1801.