Слике страница
PDF
ePub

mes.

The tone of their malignant and mercenary been very dissatisfied with Macdonald, who journals, which praised and censured every is gone to join you; you might send him to party with equal vehemence, as their fears Napoleon, but I believe this Napoleon is alor their avarice might render convenient, ready deceased, which would secure our gowas soon subdued, and they proposed to de- vernment more than any thing else. Adieu, vote their polluted pages to that party alone dear papa; I embrace you as I love you-which should prove victorious in the contest. with all my heart.” The marshals, in the mean time, with a duplicity too well calculated to favour the in A proclamation was dispatched to all the terests of Napoleon, declared that the enter- departments, in which Napoleon Buonaparte prize was wild and extravagant, and that the was denounced as a traitor, and all the miliinvader would easily be surrounded and de- tary and civil authorities, and even private stroyed. Louis alone was fully sensible of citizens, were required to apprehend him, the danger which impended, and induced by and bring him before a council of war, which, his situation to disclose his conviction, he on proof of his identity, was to punish him immediately predicted the most calamitous with death. The same punishment was anconsequences from the re-appearance of the nounced against all who accompanied or asex-emperor, and, though he did not despair, sisted him in his invasion, unless, within depicted, with a sagacity unusual to his cha- eight days from the date of the proclamation, racter, the deplorable events which actually they sent in their submission to some civil occurred.

or military authority. All seditious meetThe duke of Angouleme was immediately ings, and seditious language, were prohibited ordered to proceed from Bourdeaux to Nis- under the same penalty, and another procla

Monsieur, the brother of the king, set mation commanded the immediate assembly out without delay for Lyons; and the duke of the two chambers. The plenipotentiaries of Berri was about to join the army of the of all the foreign powers presented themselves south. The obnoxious character of the latter the next morning before his majesty, expresswas too well kn un to permit the friends of ing their concern at the unexpected escape of government to acquiesce in his intention, Napoleon from Elba; an event that threatand Macdonald and St. Cyr entreated him ened the repose of France and of Europe. to relinquish his design, assuring him that They claimed the honour, whatever might his interference would be the death-warrant be the chances of war, of attaching themof his family. If we may form a just and selves to his person, and were anxious to impartial conclusion, from the following do- give a decisive proof of their respect for a cument, the ignorance and imbecility of the sovereign who had impressed the whole of duke de Berri were of an order even below Europe with sentiments of the utmost revethe usual level of the Bourbons.

rence, by his misfortunes, his virtue, and his

generosity to his enemies. Paris, March 7, afternoon. The municipal body of Paris assembled, " Dear Papa --You will have learned by and voted an address to the king, which our telegraphic dispatches that the king has might be admired as a model of eloquence ordered me to stay here for the present. All and patriotism, if the same men, a fortnight the ministers, Desbrays, Girardin, &c. fell at afterwards, had not welcomed the exiled emmy feet to persuade me to stay. I also be- peror, in terms equally ardent, and not less lieve it to be of the highest importance.

sincere. The inhabitants of Paris assembled Paris is always the grand point; and at Be in the Thuilleries, and proclaimed, by every sançon I should only be a superfluous wheel variety of amusement and festivity, their atto a carriage which I believe will have no tachment to the king. When the monarch

The proclamation is per- appeared at the windows, or the balconies, fect. I should not have convoked the cham- their enthusiasm was evinced by a thousand bers; but if they are dismissed in time there animated and expressive attitudes. will be no harm. All is calm here. I have heart," said Louis, speaking from the balcony,

occasion to move.

“ My

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]

" is overwhelmed with joy, that an affection and to quit the soil of France. We fondly
so sincere and so ardent is testified by the hoped that he had quitted it for ever. Sud-
people. When my children thus surround denly he re-appears. He reclaims his rights,
me, ingratitude on my part could alone ren or those of his son. He promises the French
der me unhappy." The national guards liberty, victory, and peace. He re-demands
came forward to volunteer their services in the throne.
favour of the legitimate government, and in “ His rights! What are they? Can the
three days the number of the military adhe- short usurpation of a dozen years, and the
rents to its cause, independently of the regu mere designation of an infant as his successor,
lar forces, amounted to forty thousand men. be compared with seven centuries of peace-
It must reluctantly be recorded, to the eter able possession ?
nal disgrace of the French character, that “The wish of the people! Has not that
before the lapse of a fortnight they witnessed wish been already expressed? Was it not
with indifference, or actually promoted the unanimous for the expulsion of Buonaparte?
public rejoicings of Napoleon's adherents. On what ground then can he reclaim his

Among the most honest and enlightened rights ?
of the political parties in France, the liberales « The author of the most tyrannical go-
were honourably and justly distinguished, by yernment by which France had ever been
the moderation of their views, and the gene oppressed; he, who during fourteen years
rosity of their feelings. Neglected by the had been employed in undermining the cause
sovereign and the court, their attachment to of freedom, and trampling on the rights of
their country, absorbed every consideration men, now speaks of liberty. He had not the
of personal resentment. Their opinion of excuse of former recollections, and the habit
the constitution was by no means favourable, of power. They were his fellow-citizens
and many indications of despotism, or imbe whom he enslaved ;-his equals whom he
cility, in the measures of Louis, had deserved enchained. Though not born to power,

he and provoked their reprehension, but in the meditated tyranny. What liberty can he present instance they promptly and consci- promise us? Are we not a thousand times entiously supported that cause which they more free under a good king than we were conceived to be the most intimately connected under his empire ? with the tranquillity and happiness of the "He promises victory! and three times, nation. Though insulted with studied con like a base deserter, he has run from his tumely by the crowd of emigrants, who filled troops in Egypt, in Spain, and in Russia; every apartment of the palace, and prevent abandoning his faithful companions in arms ed the most valuable friends of the monarch to the threefold misery of cold, famine, and from approaching his presence, they now despair. He has drawn on France the huranged themselves on the side of the exist- miliation of being invaded, and he has lost ing government.

the conquests which we had made without Early in March a powerful sensation was him and before him." excited, by the publication of the following " He promises peace, and his name alone appeal, from the pen of Benjamin Constant, is a signal for war. A people sufficiently the literary oracle of the party. Whatever degenerate to submit to him would become may be the opinion of the reader, on the the object of European hatred ; and his tritruth and cogency of his remarks, his powers umph would be the commencement of an of eloquence, and his energy of expression, interminable war against the civilized world. cannot be disputed.

"He promises also the security of the na“ During 14 years we had groaned under tional property ;-that property which is the yoke of the despot. He had carried de- only attacked by the absurd and imprudent struction through every country of Europe, declamations of unknown and disavowed and had at length embattled the whole of writers. But this promise he will not be Europe against us.

The author of these ca. able to keep. No longer has he Europe to Jaunities was finally compelled to abdicate, partition for the recompence of his accom,

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]
[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

plices, and he must, of necessity, reward them constitution, and trusting to them for its with the property of the French.

best defence, will more dearly cherish them "He has nothing to offer, and nothing to in the hour of victory; will be proud to reign reclaim. Whom then can he gain? whom over a free people; will respect the rights of can he seduce? Civil and foreign war are the people as its most sacred deposit, and the only bribes which he has to present.

the will and the affection of the people as the Against such an adversary the govern- base and the security of power." ment needs neither extraordinary measures, The influence of this appeal, on the opinor jealous precautions, nor an extension of nion of the Parisians, was apparently benefipower. The constitution is sufficient, and cial, and the conspirators at Paris, observing the king has already rendered a faithful ho- its influence on the soldiers and the people, mage to it, in calling around him the repre- began, for the first time, to entertain some sentatives of the nation.

doubts of Napoleon's success. Their confi“ The king appeals with confidence to all dence, at this moment of uncertainty and those to whom in every period of the revo- despair, was unfortunately revived, by the, lution the interests of their country have receipt of intelligence that Lefebvre Desnoubeen dear;-to those, who have anxiously. ettes, a general who had remained some time surrounded the monarch with the safeguards in England as a prisoner, and who had vioof liberty ;-to the French exiles, to whom lated his parole of honour, was endeavouring he has restored the land of their nativity - to seduce the forces in the north.

He had to the new proprietors, whose acquisitions he marched the regiment of royal chasseurs, of has sanctioned; to all who acknowledge, who which he was the colonel, from Cambray to feel, and who cherish the principles which Compeigne, where he first declared his ingive dignity to our nature.

tention of leading thein to Lyons, to join the “ We are called on to defend a constitu

emperor. tion whose blessings are already known and Baron Lyons, the major of the regiment, felt; which contains in it the principles of gives an interesting account of the transacamelioration and perfection; and which will tion. “ At seven o'clock of the morning of become every day more dear to the sovereign the 9th, general Lefebvre Desnouettes arwho finds in it his best security, and to the rived from Lisle. He caused his regiment people to whom it is the pledge of liberty to mount their horses. We put ourselves in and happiness. We are called on to defend motion, and came to sleep at La Fere. it against a tyrannical usurpation, which has “On the morning of the 10th Lefebvre oppressed all classes and every individual; had a violent altercation with the general which will rouse against us the whole of Eu. commanding the artillery, on the requisition rope, and which will bring in its train every which he had made to him for putting the species of disgrace and misfortune.

artillery and artillerists of the place at his “ Perhaps this appeal is superfluous. The disposal; and on the formal refusal of that danger may be already past, and the traitor general we set out and passed the out-posts. may have met the fate which he merits. But There were some cries of • Vive l'Empereur,' should it be otherwise, let every

Frenchman excited by general Lefebvre, which gave us run to arms,

Let him defend his king, his reason to suspect that he had conceived some constitution, and his country. And let not criminal project. We continued our route those be the last who, devoted to the cause upon Noyon: there he told us, for the first of freedom, have dared to censure some of time, that we were likely to find ourselves the measures of the government. Let them from twelve to fifteen thousand strong; of all rush into the first ranks, for in proportion as arms, without informing us of the object of liberty is dear to them, must they dread the that assemblage. We were astonished not triumph of Buonaparte, its eternal foe. The to find a man, and this confirmed our suspigovernment, which, in this critical moment, cions. has given a decisive proof of wisdom and of 6. On the 12th he set out at the head of stability, by respecting the principles of the two squadrons, and arrived at Compeigne at

S

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

ing!

five in the morning. He caused the colonel the removal of all obstacles, and while the of the sixth chasseurs to be asked whether garrison of Grenoble aided his advance, his he would follow him with his regiment. The partisans in the north were to furnislı him colonel peremptorily refused. This conter with arms, lead on the troops under their sation took place while I was two leagues in command, and take possession of Paris. The the rear, with the rest of the regiment. I accidental meeting of a powerful detachment learned the occurrence in the course of the of the northern army by the duke of Treviso, dáy.

and the firmness of D'Aboville, at La Fere, "I was on the watch, as well as the rest disconcerted this paft of the plan, but at the of the officers. At length we determined to same time convinced thegovernment, tlrat the demand of the general what he proposed to conspiracy was not confined to the south, oh do with us and whither he meant to lead us, to the troops that accompanied Buonaparte. entreating him to explain himself distinctly, The defeat of Lefebvre's treasonable maand acknowledging that we suspected he had chinations, and the defection of Napoleon's committed the honour and existence of the plans, by the vigilance of the duke of Treregiment, and that it only remained for us viso, induced the sovereign of France to issue to implore the king's clemency. We were the following proclamation, which displays then much more astonished by his proposing an eloquence of style, and an energy of sento us to advance, as partisans, on Paris ortiment unusual to the Bourbons. Lyons. We did not hesitate a moment, ana declared that we could not follow him, which PROCLAMATION TO THE ARMIES. determined him to quit us on the instant Louis, by the grace of God, king of France and to fly. I immediately ordered the trum and Navarre :-To bur brave armies, greetpets to sound to horse, and we fell back to wards Cambray, where I shall arrive to-mor. * Brave soldiers, the glory and force of our row."

kingdom! It is in the name of honour that Lefebvré was followed by two officers your king orders you to be faithful to your Only, who were pursued and taken, but he colours : you have sworn fidelity to him: himself effected his escape, and joined Napo- you will not perjure yourselves. "A general

whom you would have defended to the latest Marshal Mortier, the duke of Treviso, who moment, if he had not released you by a forcommanded the troops 'stationed in the north, mal abdication, restored to you your legitihad left Paris to return to his head-quarters mate sovereign. Confounded in the great at Liste, when he met, on the indirect road family of which I am the father, and among he had taken, à body of troops, consisting of which you will distinguish yourselves only about 10,000 men, on their march to Paris. by more illustrious services, you are become The astonished marshal demanded whither my children. You are deeply rooted in my they were going, and found that they had affectionis, I associated myself in the glory received 'order's to march on Paris, to save the of

your triuniphs, even when they were not city from pillage, and rescue

the king from obtained in my cause.

obtained in my cause. Called to the throne the hands of the populace. He immediately of my ancestor's, I congratulated myself on perceived that this was a preconcerted plan seeing it supported by that brave army, so to fill Paris with regular troops, tó awe the worthy to defend it. Soldiers, I invoke your national guard, and to prepare for the arrival love : I claim your fidelity. Your forefathers of Napoleon. He examined 'the 'orders, saw once rallied round the plume of the great that they were forgeries, and ordered the Henry : it is his lineal descendant that I have soldiers to march back instantly to their placed at your head. Follow him faithfully quarters.

in the path of honour and duty. Defend The plans of Buonaparte, therefore, were with him the public liberty which is attackneither rash nor ill-concerted, While he ed; the constitutional charter which it is atadvanced by rapid marches to Lyons, for tempted to destroy. Defend your wives, which düe preparation had been made bý your fathers, your children, your property,

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

león.

[merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

against the tyranny by which they are me was one of the most gay, fashionable, and naced. Is not the enemy of the country also dissipated men in France; but he was mild, yours? Has he not speculated on your amiable, generous, and humane, so that his blood; and made traffic of your fatigues and foibles seldom gave much public offence, or wounds ? Was it not to satisfy his insati- gave rise to much severe animadversion. able ambition, that he led you through a We emigrated with the prince of Condé, and thousand

dangers to useless and bloody vic- his family, as soon as the revolution seriously tories ? Qur fine France not being sufficient began, and since then the lapse of years and for him, he would again exhaust its entire adyersity have changed his temper and habits. population to proceed to the extremities of He has become devgut to a more than ordithe world, and acquire new conquests at the pary degree, but he possesses that general expense of your blood. Distrust his perfidi- knowledge of the world, and of mankind, ous promises : your king calls you: the which qualify him much better for the throne country claims you. Let honour fix you of France than his present mạjęsty. Should invariable under your banners. It is I who the family of Bourbon remain in France, undertake to recompense you; it is in your Monsieur will probably succeed to the soveranks, it is among the chosen of the faithful reign authority: an event most earnestly desoldiers that I will select officers, Public sired by the French loyalists. Disease, ungratitude will repay all your services. Make wieldiness, and the other evils attendant on oneeffort more, and you will speedily acquire old age, do not accord with the duties of so glory, and the splendid repose you will have active a nation as the French, at the end of a nerited. March then without hesitation, revolution of twenty-five years, when the brave soldiers, at the call of honour: appre people are divided by political and religious hend yourselves the first traitor who may try animosities ; when many wish to establish a 10 seduce you. If any among you have al. republic, that they may have no king; when ready lent an ear to the perfidious sugges- others wish to acknowledge the authority of tions of rebels

, such have still time to return any family but the Bourbon race, which they to the path of duty. The door is still open have offended past forgiveness, and must al. to repentance. It is in this way that several ways view with jealousy and hatred. There squadrons of cavalry, whom a guilty chief is a frankness in the character of Monsieur, wished to lead astray near La Fere, volun- extremely, different from the reserve and tatarily forced him to withdraw himself. Let citurnity of the reigning monarch, who, in the whole of the army profit by this.example. early life, was by no means so much esteemed Let the great number of corps which have as the duke d’Artois, notwithstanding his mot been seduced, and who have refused to foibles, his levity, and expensive habits. join the rebels, close their battalions to attack The majority of the inhabitants of Lyons and repel the traitor. Soldiers ! you are

were favourable to Napoleon, but a strong Frenchmen: I am your king. It is not in party of loyalists yet remained in the city, vain that I confide to your courage, and to and many of the young men, of the prinyour fidelity, the safety of our dear country. cipal families, formed themselves into a guard Dated at the Thuilleries the 12th of March, for the immediate protection of Monsieur. 1815, and the twentieth year of our reign. Macdonald carefully inspected the fortifica

Louis.” tions, caused the villages of Morand and La

Guilloterie to be barricadoed, and made every The defence of Lyons was entrusted to preparation for a vigorous defence. On the marshal Macdonald, beneath the immediate ensuing day Monsieur harangued the troops, auspices of Monsieur and the duke of Or- descanted on the virtues of Louis, and deleans. The farmer of these individuals was claimed with the utmost energy on the tydistinguished by a title, which remarkably ranny and attrocities of Napoleon. His perdisplays the vanity of the French, and im- sonal guard replied with acclamations of plies that the brother of their king is exclu Long live the King,” but the troops of the sively a gentleman. In his youthful days he line remained in mournful and respectful

[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]
« ПретходнаНастави »