Page images
[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

1. In page 35 it is stated, that an aide decamp held the Emperor's stirrup. I am informed that it was either the Duke of Vicenza, or · General Fowler, or an equerry, as those details were regulated with great exactness.

2. In page 37 it is mentioned, that the Emperor Napoleon had a habit of retracting his lips and apparently chewing. I since learn, that this movement was occasioned by a custom of keeping a piece of liquorice or comfits in his mouth, as a remedy against a cough, which frequently tormented him.

3. Colonel Charles Labedoyere is incorrectly VOL. II.

[ocr errors]

called Colonel Henry Labedoyere in page 51, and page 122, and it must be mentioned that the statement respecting the regiments is inexact;

it was the 7th regiment of the line which Colonel Labedoyere commanded. This 7th regiment of the line was composed of the 112th, and several other regiments; and the eleventh regiment had served with the Emperor. Labedoyere and his regiment, as is mentioned, marched out, or rather leapt from the ramparts, in the afternoon of Napoleon's arrival at Grenoble. The Colonel then drew an eagle from his pocket, placed it on a pole, and embraced it beforə the troops, who shouted Vive L'Empereur. He then broke open a drum which was full of tri-coloured cockades, and distributed them to his regiment.

4. The name of another general, and not Count Rapp, should be mentioned here. He did make dispositions to check the invasion, as may be judged from the anecdote afterwards mentioned of him.

5. In reading the account of the King's flight, the reader is desired to remark, that the story of the attempt to arrest Louis at Lille is mentioned with reserve. i And it may here be told that Marshal Ney said on his trial, that he had received the order from the Emperor Napoleon, “ to treat the royal family with the respect due bo to misfortune.” The conduct of Napoleon to

the Duke of Angouleme shows how much he wished the family of the Bourbons fairly safe out of France.

6. To the statement made respecting Augereau, I must add that the Emperor told his friends, that the reason of Augereau's disgrace was to be attributed to the following fact. Napoleon travelling to Elba met the marshal; got out of his carriage, had a long conversation with him, and embraced him at parting. When they stopped for the night, the Austrian commissary said to Bertrand, that he wondered at the manner in which the marshal had been received by the Emperor, as he had for some time been in good understanding with the allies. This conversation was related to the Emperor, who learnt also that it was believed at Lyons that the marshal had delivered up the town for a sum of money. This last persuasion may not be well founded, but it was believed at Lyons, where when the marshal appeared at the theatre, some one shouted out,“ are there any more towns on sale?” The Emperor was convinced of the fact, and said “ he would forgive the injury personal to himself, but not that which had been so fatal to France."

7. It may be worth while to mention an anecdote relative to the mass at the Champ de ' Mai. The question whether or not there should

be any mass at that ceremony was a long time agitated before and by the Emperor. Many thought it would give an air of ridicule to introduce it; but the Emperor decided in the affirmative, in order, as he said, to put an end to the cries of à bas la Calotte, à bas les prêtres, and to shew the nation that he did not approve such a spirit.

8. In page 36 of the second volume, the name of Count Flahaut, by a mistake, originating in the Moniteur, is put for that of Count Drouot.

9. The account of Malmaison being neglect. ed when Napoleon accepted the crown, must only apply to his first reign, for during his last he frequently visited that country house, and took great delight in looking at those trees which he had himself planted. I must here mention, that although the relation given of the last days at Malmaison was communicated to me by a person who had just quitted the spot, yet I have received from another eye-witness adifferent story. He told

that in his last visit there were no chamberlain, no courtiers attendant upon Napoleon, and only Count Labedoyere and another aide-de-camp, were habitual visitants. The number of impatient creditors was diminished, by the same authority, to two generals. And he informed me, that the Princess Hortense quitted the place half an hour before Napoleon got into his carriage; adding that the Emperor was exceedingly affected when he took leave of the aide-de-camp above alluded to, and embraced him four times on stepping into his carriage. It may belong to this note to state, that perhaps I have not given the exact spirit of the words made use of by Napoleon, when he declared he would not destroy himself: the expression was this ; “ Quelque chose qui arrive, je n'avancerai pas la destinée d'une heure."


I take also this occasion of stating my firm opinion, founded on the best authority, that after his abdication he had no intention of recovering his power, and that whatever plot existed (if any did exist) to replace him, was concerted independently of him.

10. The name of General Bourmont is mentioned in page 208.

To what is said of his evidence against Ney, I beg to add the following anecdote. General Bourmont having quitted Marshal Ney at Lons le Saulnier, came to Paris and asked for employment : the answer given him by Marshal Davoust, then minister at war, was, “General, you must perform quarantine." Bourmont left the marshal, not much pleased with his reception; but went to Count Labedoyere, who took him to the Tuileries, answered for him to the Emperor, and obtained for him an audience, from which he departed with a

« PreviousContinue »