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on board his vessel. He died without suffering, and a death the mildest and the most desired by military men.
I deeply sympathise with your sorrow. The moment that separates us from the objecţ we love is terrible: it severs us from the world-it affects the frame with convulsions of agony. The faculties of the mind are annihilated—it retains no relations with the world, except through the mediuni of an incubus which alters every thing. Mankind appear more cold and selfish than they really are. In such a situation we feel, that if nothing obliged us to live, it would be far better to die; but when, after that first impression, we press our children to our heart, tears and sentiments of lenderness reanimate nature, and we live for our children. Yes, Madam, let yours from that first moment open your heart to melancholy: You will weep with them, you will watch over their infancy, you will'instruct them in their youth-you will talk to them of their father, of your grief, of the loss which they and the Republic have suffered. After having re-attached yourself to the world through the influence of filial and maternal love, appreciate for something the friendship and the lively interest that I shall ever entertain for the widow of my friend. Be persuaded that there are some men, though small in number, who deserve to be the hope of the afflicted, because they feel acutely for mental suffering. (Signed) BONAPARTE."
There is a little of the mannerism of the period in the above, but every British woman, whose husband or brother has fallen for his country, will appreciate its value and the motives of the writer. A single authentic document like this refutes and outlives a thousand calumnies.
There are fewer symptoms in this publication of Napoleon's tendency to a belief in predestination than we expected to have found. The feeling, however, now and then breaks out-pretty strongly in his despatch from Egypt announcing the naval defeat at Aboukir; and also in the account of his marriage with Marie-Louise. Upon that occasion Prince Schwartzenberg, the Austrian ambassador at Paris, gave a splendid fete at Paris, to which Napoleon and the new Empress were invited.
In the midst of the festivities, a temporary which had been constructed in the garden of the Ambassador's hotel, took fire. Many persons perished. Among them the Ambassador's sister-in-law, who was suffocated in the attempt to rescue one of her children. The writer proceeds
“In 1770, during the fête given by the city of Paris to celebrate the marriage of Louis the Sixteenth with Marie-Antoinette, two thousand persons were overturned in the fosses of the Champs-Elysées, and perished. · Asterwards, when Louis and Marie-Antoinette met their death upon the scaffold, this terrible accident was recollected and converted into a presage of what followed for it is to the insurrection of that great metropolis that the Revolution must be immediately attributed. The unfortunate issue of a fête given by an Austrian ambassador, under similar circumstances, to celebrate the alliance of two houses in the persons of Napoleon and Marie-Louise, appeared an inauspicious omen. The misfortunes of France have been solely caused by the change of policy on the part of Austria. Napoleon was noi superstitious, yet upon that occasion he had a painful presentiment. The day after the battle of Dresden, when, during the pursuit of the Austrian army, he learned from a prisoner that Prince Schwartzenberg was rumoured to have been killed, he observed He was a brave man; but his death is so far consoling, that it was evidently he who was threatened by the unhappy omen at his ball.' Two hours after it was ascertained at head-quarters that it was Moreau, and not Prince Schwartzenberg, that had been killed the day before.”
There are numerous other personal traits dispersed through the work, and which, independently of their intrinsic interest, greatly relieve the severity of the historical and military details. If any credit be due to his statements here, and in his recorded conversations at St. Helena, both of which agree with the reports of the best informed Frenchmen, who have no motives to traduce him, his moral character must be taken to have been grossly misrepresented before his fall. In his public capacity he exhibited the feelings, or let us rather call them the crimes, inseparable from ambitious men and ambitious governments. Like other warriors, he was indifferent enough to the effusion of human blood, provided the victory was secured. Like other persons and states aspiring to empire, he made light of the rights and institutions that were opposed to his plans of dominion. But apart from these, the almost universal vices of nations and rulers, he seems as an individual to have been tainted by very few of the noxious passions and caprices of exalted station. His personal habits were laborious and temperate. In private intercourse, if any intercourse with such a man can be called so, he usually succeeded in fixing the unbounded admiration and attachment of those who approached him. In his distribution of favours, there was little of the petty perfidy and mystery of Courts. The system which he directed demanded talent in every department, and wherever he found it, he appropriated it, promptly and even abruptly, but in general so judiciously that he had seldom cause to repent of his selection. From the tone in which he speaks of public men, it may be collected that he was very far from entertaining a contempt for virtue. He asserts, that personal probity formed one of the highest recommendations to his favour-although it was a melancholy fact, that in France during his day, moral worth was, for the purposes of her government, not the most valuable qualification. Even his ambition, culpable and destructive as it was, was not untinged by magnanimity. His abdication at Fontainebleau, the severest trial of human pride, was not so involuntary and sudden as was at the time supposed. In a despatch to Caulaincourt (4th Jan. 1814) appended to this publication, he announces his intention, if called upon, to make that sacrifice.
“Would they (the Allies) reduce France to her ancient limits? It would be to degrade her. They deceive themselves if they imagine that the reverses of war can make the nation desire peace upon such terms. There is not a French heart that would not in six months' time feel the scandal of such a peace, and that would not reproach the government that could be base enough to sign it. If the nation seconds me, the enemy marches to his destruction. If fortune betrays me, my resolution is taken-I do not cling to the throne-I shall never disgrace the nation, or myself, by subscribing such shameful conditions."
The style of these volumes is simple, perspicuous, and animated. The notes, as we are informed by the editors, are more exclusively his own composition-and, even though we had been ignorant of that fact, would have struck us as among the most original parts of the work, both in matter and execution. There are frequent sketches more or less in detail of contemporary characters. To give an idea of their general manner, we shall conclude our extracts and the present subject with his notice of two of his favourite generals who fell in the battle of Essling
« On this day perished two generals, the Duke of Montebello and St. Hilaire-both of them heroes, and the best of Napoleon's friends. He wept for their loss. They would never have deserted 'him in his adversity ; they would never have been faithless to the glory of the French people. The Duke of Montebello was a native of Lectoure. When a chef de bataillon he distinguished himself during the campaigns of 1796 in Italy. As a general he covered himself with glory in Egypt, at Montebello, at Marengo, at Austerlitz, at Jéna, at Pultusk, at Friedland, at Tudella, at Saragossa, at Eckmül and at Essling, where he found a glorious death. He was cautious, sagacious, and daring; before an enemy his presence of mind was not to be shaken. He owed little to education-Nature had done every thing for him. Napoleon, who had witnessed the progress of his mind, often remarked it with astonishment. For maneuvring five and twenty thousand infantry ou the field of battle, he was superior to all the generals of the French army. He was still young, and would have become more perfect; perhaps he might even have reached to a proficiency in the highest branch of tactics (le grande tactique) which as yet he had not understood. St. Hilaire was a general at Castiglione in 1796. He was remarkable for the chivalry of his character. He had excellent dispositions, was a kind companion, a kind brother, a kind relative. He was covered with wounds. His attachment to Napoleon commenced at the siege of Toulon. They called him, alluding to Bayard, 'le Chevalier sans peur, et sans reproche.”
THE SWORD OF THE TOMB.*
A Northern Legend.
Voice of the buried past !
When Night with her stars and dreams hath power,
hath been soundless on the snows,
On the billow and the blast."
Then the torrents of the North
From the dark sepulchral hill.
In the shadow of the night.
And its edge is fraught with thy foeman's doom ;
For the viewless have fearful might.”
Then died the solemn lay,
* The idea of this ballad is taken from a scene in “ Starkother," a tragedy by the Danish Poet, Ochlenschlager,
The fir-trees rock'd to the wailing, blast, :
By the fires of northern pine.
Gave warning with voice and sign.
But the wind strange magic knows
When Night'is on her throne.
But his road through dimness lay!
Arose on his midnight way..
Then first a moment's chill
Before that place of rest.
With a strange and a solemn light.*
For the viewless have fearful might !”
But the magic sword and shield
By the tomb-fire's waveless ray.
And the rich mead flows in light.
For the viewless have fearful might!"
And many a Saga's rhyme,
The sepulchral fire, supposed to guard the ashes of departed heroes, is frequently alluded to in the Northern Sagas.
But he raised his arm and the flame grew dim,
Through the chamber of the dead.
Was strewn on the champion's head.
and all was still
With the mighty weapon's fall.
To seek him in the tomb.
Burst on him through the gloom.
And the hour of chace is near;
What dost thou, Sigurd, here?”
I have scatter'd the dust of my warrior-sire !
To strew o'er the restless deep!
There was wrath in his eye, there was gloom on his brow,
Oh! chill is the house of sleep!"
And the reddening sun shines clear,
It is dark and fearful here !”
But'gone from his head is the kingly crown,
Where the feast of the gods is spread !*
forth alone on his phantom-steed,
But the slayer shall avenge the dead!”
That sword its fame had won
Severe sufferings to the departed spirit were supposed by the Northern Mythologists to be the consequence of any profanation of the sepulchre.