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charge in the dark. Napoleon was assailed, at plexity. Such a concession would dishonor him the same moment, by two dragoons. General in the eyes of France and of Europe. It would Corbineau threw himself upon one of the Cos-leave France weakened and defenseless ;-exsacks, while General Gourgaud shot down the posed not only to insult, but to successful invaother. The escort, who were but a few steps sion from the powerful and banded enemies who bebind, immediately charged, and rescued the surrounded the republican empire. Napoleon Emperor. Napoleon had lost in the conflict at shut himself up for hours pondering the terrible Brienne five or six thousand men in killed and crisis. Ruin was coming, like an avalanche, wounded.
upon him and upon France. The generals of The next day Blucher and Schwartzenberg, the army urged him to submit to the dire neceshaving effected a junction, marched with a hund sity. With reluctance Napoleon transmitted red and fifty thousand men, to attack Napoleon these inexorable conditions of the Allies to his at Rothierre, nine miles from Brienne. Prince privy council at Paris. All but one voted for acSchwartzenberg sent a confidential officer to cepting them. His brother Joseph wrote to him : Blucher, to inquire respecting the plan of attack. “Yield to events. Preserve what may yet be He abruptly replied, “We must march to Paris preserved. Save your life, precious to millions Napoleon has been in all the capitals of Europe. of men. There is no dishonor in yielding to We must make him descend from a throne, numbers and accepting peace. There would be which it would have been well for us all that s dishonor in abandoning the throne, because you he had never mounted. We shall have no re-would thus abandon a crowd of men who have pose, till we pull him down.”
devoted themselves to you. Make peace at any The Emperor had with much difficulty assem- price." bled there, forty thousand troops. The French, Thus urged and overwhelmed, Napoleon, at desperately struggling against such fearful odds, last, with extreme anguish, gave Caulaincourt maintained their position during the day. As a permission to sign any treaty which he thought gloomy winter's night again darkened the scene, necessary to save the capital. His consent was Napoleon retreated to Troyes, leaving six thou- given in a singularly characteristic manner. sand of his valiant band, in every hideous form Calmly taking from a shelf a volume of the works of mutilation, upon the frozen ground. Alex- of Montesquieu, he read aloud the following pasander and Frederic William, from one of the sage: neighboring heights, witnessed, with unbounded “ i know nothing more magnanimous, than a exultation, this triumph of their arms. Blucher, resolution which a monarch took, who has reigned though a desperate fighter, was in his private in our times, to bury himself under the ruins of character one of the most degraded of bacchanals his throne, rather than accept conditions unworthy and debauchees. “The day after the battle," of a king. He had a mind too lofty to descend says Sir Archibald Alison, “the sovereigns, em- lower than his fortunes had sunk him. He knew bassadors, and principal generals supped togeth- well that courage may strengthen a crown, but er, and Blucher striking off, in his eagerness, the infamy never.” necks of the bottles of champagne with his knife, / In silence he closed the book. Murat still enquaffed off copious and repeated libations to the treated him to yield to the humiliating concestoist, drank with enthusiasm by all present, . To sions. He represented that nothing could be Paris.'"
more magnanimous than to sacrifice even his Napoleon was now in a state of most painful glory to the safety of the state, which would fall perplexity. His enemies, in bodies vastly out with him. The Emperor, after a moment's pause, numbering any forces he could raise, were march- replied: ing upon Paris, from all directions. A move “Well! be it 30. Let Caulaincourt sign whatment toward the north only opened an unob- ever is necessary to procure peace. I will bear structed highway to his capital, from the east the shame of it, but I will not dictate my own and the south. Tidings of disaster were con- disgrace.” tinually reaching his ears. A conference was But to make peace with the republican Emstill carried on between Napoleon and the Allies peror was the last thing in the thoughts of these in reference to peace. Napoleon wrote to Cau- banded kings. When they found that Napoleon laincourt, to agree to any reasonable terms" which was ready to accede to their cruel terms, they would save the capital and avoid a final battle, immediately abandoned them for other and still which would swallow up the last forces of the more exorbitant demands. Napoleon had conkingdom."
sented to surrender all the territory which France The Allies, however, had no desire for peace. had acquired since his accession to power. They wished only to create the impression that The Allies now demanded that Napoleon should Napoleon was the one who refused to sheathe cut down France to the limits it possessed before the sword. Consequently they presented only the Revolution. The proposition was a gross insuch terms as Napoleon could not, without dis- sult. Can we conceive of the United States as honor, accept. On receiving, at this time, one being so humbled as even to listen to such a sugof those merciless dispatches, requiring that he gestion! Were England to combine the despotshould surrender all the territory which France isms of Europe in a war against Republican had acquired since his accession to the throne, America, and then to offer peace only upon the Napoleon was plunged into an agony of per- condition that we would surrender all the territory
TIDINGS OF THE CAPITULATION. which has been annexed to the United States an answer to Caulaincourt, and tell him that I since the Revolution-Florida, Louisiana, Texas, reject the treaty. I would rather incur the risks New Mexico, California-what administration of the most terrible war.” This spirit his foes would dare to accede to such terms? And yet de- have stigmatized as insatiable ambition, and the mands so atrocious the Allies pronounced moder- love of carnage. ate and reasonable. Napoleon nobly resolved to The exultant Allies, now confident of the ruin perish, rather than yield to such dishonor. of their victim, urged their armies onward, to
“What," he exclaimed, as he indignantly held overwhelm with numbers the diminished bands up these propositions, “do they require that I still valiantly defending the independence of should sign such a treaty as this, and that I should France. Napoleon, with forty thousand men, trample upon the oath I have taken, to detach retreated some sixty miles down the valley of the nothing from the soil of the empire. Unheard Seine to Nogent. Schwartzenberg, with two of reverses may force from me a promise to re- hundred thousand Austrians, took possession of nounce my own conquests; but that I should also Troyes, about seventy-five miles above Nogent. abandon the conquests made before me—that as With these resistless numbers he intended to fola reward for so many efforts, so much blood, such low the valley of the river to Paris, driving the brilliant victories, I should leave France smaller Emperor before him. than I found her ! Never! Can I do so without Fifty miles north of the river Seine, lies the deserving to be branded as a traitor and a cow- valley of the Marne. The two streams unite near ard? You are alarmed at the continuance of the Paris. Blucher, with an army of about seventy war. But I am fearful of more certain dangers thousand Russians and Prussians, was rapidly which you do not see. If we renounce the bound- marching upon the metropolis, down the banks ary of the Rhine, France not only recedes, but of the Marne, where there was no force to oppose Austria and Prussia advance. France stan'ls in him. The situation of Napoleon seemed now need of peace. But the peace which the Allies quite desperate. Weilington, with a vast army, wish to impose on her would subject her to was marching from the south. Bernadotte was greater evils than the most sanguinary war. leading uncounted legions from the north. BluWhat would the French people think of me, if I cher and Schwartzenberg, with their several arwere to sign their humiliation ? What could I mies, were crowding upon Paris from the east. say to the republicans of the Senate, when they And the enormous navy of England had swept demanded the barriers of the Rhine? Heaven French commerce from all seas, and was bompreserve me from such degradation ! Dispatch barding every defenseless city of France The
councilors of the Emperor were in despair. They | Chevalier de Goualt, accompanied by five or six urged him, from absolute necessity, to accede to of the inhabitants, with the white cockade of the any terms which the Allies might extort. fallen dynasty upon their breasts, treasonably
The firmness which Napoleon displayed under called upon the Emperor Alexander, and said: these trying circumstances, soars into sublimity. “We entreat your Majesty, in the name of all To their entreaties that he would yield to dis- the respectable inhabitants of Troyes, to accept honor, he calmly replied :
with favor the wish which we form, for the re-estab"No! no! we must think of other things just lishment of the royal house of Bourbon on the now. I am on the eve of beating Blucher. He throne of France." is advancing on the road to Paris. I am about But Alexander, apprehensive that the genius to set off to attack him. I will beat him to-mor- of Napoleon might still retrieve his fallen forTow. I will beat him the day after to-morrow. tunes, cautiously replied : “ Gentlemen, I receive If that movement is attended with the success it you with pleasure. I wish well to your cause, deserves, the face of affairs will be entirely but I fear your proceedings are rather premature. changed. Then we shall see what is to be done." The chances of war are uneertain, and I should
Napoleon had formed one of those extraordi- be grieved to see brave men like you compromised nary plans which so often, during his career, had or sacrificed. We do not come ourselves to give changed apparent ruin into the most triumphant a king to France. We desire to know its wishes, success. Leaving ten thousand men at Nogent, and to leave it to declare itself." to retard the advance of the two hundred thou- “But it will never declare itself,” M. de Gousand Austrians, he hastened, with the remaining alt replied, “as long as it is under the knife. thirty thousand troops, by forced marches across Never, so long as Bonaparte shall be in authority the country, to the valley of the Marne. It was in France, will Europe be tranquil." his intention to fall suddenly upon the flank of “It is for that very reason," replied Alexander, Blacher's self-confident and unsuspecting army. "that the first thing we must think of is to beat
The toil of the wintery march, through miry him to beat him--to beat him.” moods and through storms of sleet and rain, was The royalist deputation retired, encouraged so ethaasting that he had but twenty-five thou- with the thought that, from prudential considersani men to form in line of battle, when he en-ations, their cause was adjourned, but only for a countered the enemy. It was early in the morn- few days. At the same time the Marquis of ing of the 10th of February, as the sun rose Vitrolles, one of the most devoted of the Bourbon brilliantly over the snow-covered hills, when the adherents, arrived at the head-quarters of the French soldiers burst upon the Russians, who Allies, with a message from the royalist conwere quietly preparing their breakfasts. The spirators in Paris, entreating the monarchs to victory was most brilliant. Napoleon pierced the advance as rapidly as possible to the capital. A centre of the multitudinous foe, then turned upon baser act of treachery has seldom been recorded. one wing, and then upon the other, and proudly These very men had been rescued from penury scattered the fragments of the army before him. and exile by the generosity of Napoleon. He But he had no reserves, with which to profit by had pardoned their hostility to republican France; this extraordinary victory. His weary troops had sheltered them from insult and from injury, could not pursue the fugitives.
and, with warm sympathy for their woes, which The next day Blucher, by energetically bring- Napoleon neither caused or could have averted, ing forward reinforcements, succeeded in col had received them under the protection of the lecting sixty thousand men, and fell with terrible | imperial regime. fury upon the little band who were gathered In ten days Napoleon had gained five victories. around Napoleon. A still more sanguinary bat-| | The inundating wave of invasion was still rolling tle ensuel, in which the Emperor was again, and steadily on toward Paris. The activity and enstill more signally triumphant. These brilliant ergy of Napoleon surpassed all wbich mortal man achievements elated the French soldiers beyond had ever attempted before. In a day and night measure. They felt that nothing could withstand march of thirty hours he hurried back to the banks the genius of the Emperor, and even Napoleon of the Seine. The Austrians, now three hundred began to hope that fortune would again smile thousand strong, were approaching Fontaineupon him. Froin the field of battle he wrote a bleau. Sixty miles southeast of Paris, at the hurried line to Caulaincourt, who was his pleni confluence of the Seine and the Yonne, is situpotentiary at Chatillon, where the Allies had ated, in a landscape of remarkable beauty, the opened their pretended negotiation. “I have little town of Montereau. conquered," he wrote; “ your attitude must be Here Napoleon, having collected around him the same for peace. But sign nothing without forty thousand men, presented a bold front, to my order, because I alone know my position." arrest the farther progress of the Allies. An aw
While Napoleon was thus cutting up the army ful battle now ensued. Napoleon, in the eagerof Blucher upon the Marne, a singular scene was ness of the conflict, as the projectiles from the transpiring in Troyes. The royalists there, en- Austrian batteries plowed the ground around him, couraged by Napoleon's apparently hopeless de- and his artillerymen fell dead at his feet, leaped feat, resolved to make a vigorous movement for from his horse, and with his own hand directed the restoration of the Bourbons. A deputation, a gun against the masses of the enemy. As the consisting of the Marquis de Vidranges and the balls from the hostile batteries tore through the
French ranks, strewing the ground with the issue. Napoleon, with but forty thousand men, wounded and the dead, the cannoneers entreated pursued the retreating army, one hundred thouthe Emperor to retire to a place of safety. With a sand strong, up the valley of the Seine, till they serene eye he looked around him, upon the storm took refuge in the vicinity of Chaumont, about a of iron and of lead, and smiling, said : “Courage, hundred and sixty miles from the field of battle. my friends, the ball which is to kill me is not yet “My heart is relieved,” said Napoleon joyfully, cast."* The bloody combat terminated with the as he beheld the flight of the Allies. “I have night. Napoleon was the undisputed victor. saved the capital of my empire." Amazing as
The whole allied army, confounded by such were these achievements, they only postponed the unexpected disasters, precipitately retreated, and day of ruin. The defeat of one or two hundred began to fear that no numbers could triumph over thousand, from armies numbering a million of Napoleon. The Emperors of Russia and Austria, men, with another army of a million held in reand the King of Prussia, bewildered by such un-serve, to fill up the gaps caused by the casualties anticipated blows, were at a loss what orders to of war, could be of but little avail.*
* In one of the charges which took place at the bridge "Meantime hostilities were maintained with increascd of Montereau, a bomb literally entered the chest of Gen- | vigor over a vast line of operations. How much useless eral Pajoli's charger, and burst in the stomach of the glory did our soldiers not gain in these conflicts. But in poor animal ; sending its rider a considerable height into spite of prodigies of valor, the enemy's masses advanced the air. General Pajoli fell, dreadfully mangled, but al- and approximated to a central point, so that this war most miraculously escaped mortal injury. When this might be compared to the battle of the ravens and the singular occurrence was mentioned to the Emperor, he eagles on the Alps. The eagle kills them by hundreds. said to the general, that nothing but the interposition of Every stroke of his beak is the death of an enemy. But
uld have preserved his life under such cir- still the ravens return to the charge, and press upon the cumstances. This anecdote was related to W. H. Ireland, eagle, until he is literally overwhelmed by the number of Esq., by General Pajoli himself.
In the midst of these terrific scenes, Napoleon of the battle still continuing, he ordered a draalmost daily corresponded with Josephine, whom goon to conduct her to his own quarters, till she he still loved as he loved no one else. On one could be provided with suitable protection. The occasion, when the movements of battle brought dragoon took the lady, fainting with terror, upon him not far from her residence, he turned aside his horse behind him, when another ruffian band from the army, and sought a hurried interview of Cossacks struck him dead from his steed, with his most faithful friend. It was their last and seized again the unhappy victim. She was meeting. At the close of the short and melan- never heard of morc. And yet every heart must choly visit, Napoleon took her hand, and gazing know her awful doom. Such is war, involving tenderly upon her, said :
in its inevitable career every conceivable crime, “ Josephine, I have been as fortunate as was and every possible combination of misery. ever man upon the face of this earth. But in The Allies, in consternation, held a council of this hour, when a storm is gathering over my war. Great despondency prevailed. “The Grand head, I have not, in this wide world, any one Army," said the Austrian officers, “has lost but you upon whom I can repose."
| half its numbers by the sword, disease, and wet His letters, written amidst all the turmoil of the weather. The country we are now in is ruined. camp, though exceedingly brief, were more con- The sources of our supplies are dried up All fiding and affectionate than ever, and, no matter around us the inhabitants are ready to raise the in what business he was engaged, a courier from standard of insurrection. It has become indis Josephine immediately arrested his attention, and pensable to secure a retreat to Germany, and à line from her was torn open with the utmost wait for reinforcements." These views were eagerness. His last letter to her was written adopted by the majority. The retreat was confrom the vicinity of Brienne, after a desperate tinued in great confusion, and Count Lichtenengagement against overwhelming numbers. It stein was dispatched to the head-quarters of Nawas concluded in the following affecting words: poleon, to solicit an armistice. Napoleon received
"On beholding these scenes, where I had pass-the envoy in the hut of a peasant, where he had ed my boyhood, and comparing my peaceful con- stopped to pass the night. Prince Lichtenstein, dition then with the agitation and terrors which as he proposed the armistice, presented Napoleon I now experience, I several times said in my own with a private note from the Emperor Francis. mind, I have sought to meet death in many con- This letter was written in a conciliatory and almost flicts. I can no longer fear it. To me death apologetic spirit; admitting that the plans of the would now be a blessing. But I would once Allies had been most effectually frustrated, and more see Josephine.'"
that in the rapidity and force of the strokes which There was an incessant battle raging for a cir- had been given, the Emperor of Austria recog. cuit of many miles around the metropolis. All nized anew the resplendent genius of his son-inthe hospitals were filled with the wounded and law. Napoleon, according to his custom on such the dying. Josephine and her ladies were em- occasions, entered into a perfectly frank and unployed at Malmaison in scraping lint, and form- reserved conversation with the Prince. He ining bandages, for the suffering victims of war. quired of him if the Allies intended the restoration At last it became dangerous for Josephine to re- of the Bourbons to the throne of France. main any longer at Malmaison, as bands of bar- “Is it a war against the throne,” said he, barian soldiers, with rapine and violence, were“ which you intend to carry on? The Count wandering all over the country. One stormy d'Artois is with the grand army in Switzerland. morning, when the rain was falling in floods, she The Duke d'Angoulême is at the head-quarters took her carriage for the more distant retreat of of the Duke of Wellington, from thence address. Navarre. She had proceeded about thirty miles, ing proclamations to the southern portions of my when some horsemen appeared in the distance, empire. Can I believe that my father-in-law, rapidly approaching. She heard the cry, “ The the Emperor Francis, is so blind, or so unnatuCossacks, the Cossacks!” In her terror she leap- ral, as to project the dethronement of his own ed from her carriage, and, in the drenching rain, daughter, and the disinheriting of his own grandfied across the fields. The attendants soon dis- son ?" covered that they were French hussars, and the The Prince assured Napoleon that the Allies unha ppy Empress was recalled. She again en- had no such idea ; that the residence of the tered her carriage, and proceeded the rest of the | Bourbon princes with the allied armies was way without molestation.
merely on suíferance; and that the Allies wished The scenes of woe which invariably accompany only for peace, not to destroy the empire. Nathe march of brutal armies, no imagination can poleon acceded to the proposal for an armistice. conceive. We will record but one, as illustrative He appointed the city of Lusigny as the place of hundreds which might be narrated. In the for opening the conference. Three of the allied midst of a bloody skirmish, Lord Londonderry generals were deputed as commissioners, one saw a young and beautiful French lady, the wife each on the part of Austria, Russia, and Prussia. of a colonel, seized from a calèche by three semi- Hostilities, however, were not to be suspended barbarian Russian soldiers, who were hurrying till the terms of the armistice were agreed upon. into the woods with their frantic and shrieking On the morning of the 24th Napoleon re-entered victim. With a small band of soldiers he suc- Troyes, the enemy having abandoned the town ceeded in rescuing her. The confusion and peril | during the night. The masses of the people
VOL. IX.-No. 49.-D