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English nation would have but little influence with the views of the government. Should the over the aristocratic ministry; that the sympathy Ministry be desirous of placing a commissioner of the people of England and Ireland with Na- near my person, Gourgaud will see that this conpoleon, was a prominent reason why the repub- dition shall not seemingly have the effect of lican Emperor was thus dreaded by the cabinet placing me under any kind of confinement ; and of St. James.
that the person selected for the duty may, by his Napoleon, in conclusion, replied: "If there rank and character, remove all idea of an unfawere a prospect of saving France, and not merely | vorable or suspicious nature.” of promoting my personal safety, I might attempt General Gourgaud was dispatched to England, a repetition of the return from Elba. As it is, I but was not even allowed to land. His letter was only seek for repose. Should I once more cause sent by other hands to the Court of St. James. a single shot to be fired, malevolence would take During the nigát, several French naval officers advantage of the circumstance to asperse my again entreated Napoleon not to trust to the character. I am offered a quiet retreat in En- British government. They expressed great congland. I am not acquainted with the Prince Re- fidence that they could escape along the shore, gent ; but from all I have heard of him, I can and implored him not to place himself in the not avoid placing reliance in his magnanimity. power of an enemy, to whose honor and generMy determination is taken. I am going to write osity it was in vain to make any appeal. While to the Prince. To-morrow, at daybreak, we will thus deliberating, General Becker arrived in all repair on board the English cruiser."
haste with the information that the Bourbons had Napoleon immediately wrote, with the utmost sent some officers to Rochefort to arrest the Emrapidity, and apparently without devoting a mo- peror. Napoleon immediately dressed, and, just ment to the choice either of words or thoughts, as the day was dawning, entered a small brig, the the following letter to George IV., then Prince Epervier, to be conveyed to the British cruiser. Regent. It is couched in terms of calm, sorrow The whole party accompanying the Emperor, ful, and majestic diction, worthy of the occasion consisting of officers, ladies, children, and serv. and of the man. Its comprehensiveness, appro- ants, amounted to fifty-nine persons. priateness, and dignity of expression have com- “Sire," said General Becker, with deep emotion, manded universal admiration :
" shall I accompany you to the Bellcrophon?" “Royal Highness—Exposed to the factions. With that instinctive sense of delicacy, generwhich divide my country, and to the hostility of osity, and honor, which ever characterized the the principal powers of Europe, I have termin- Emperor, he promptly replied : “ By no means. ated my political career, and I come, like The- We must be mindful of the reputation of France. mistocles, to sit down at the fireside of the Were you to accompany me, it might be thought British people. I place myself under the pro- that you had delivered me up to the English. It tection of their laws, which I claim from your is entirely of my fiee will that I proceed to their Rüyal Highness, as the most powerful, the most squadron. I do not wish to expose France to constant, and the most generous of my enemies.” | the suspicion of such an act of treachery."
It was now four o'clock in the afternoon of the General Becker, like all who had ever been 14th. Las Cases and Gourgaud were dispatched admitted to the familiar acquaintance of this exon board the Bellerophon to announce the coming traordinary man, was entirely under the influence of his Majesty the next day General Gourgaud of that irresistible attraction which he exerted was also commissioned to take the letter to Lon- over all who approached him. The General, don. He received from the Emperor the follow- who had been sent by the provisional governing instructions:
ment to watch over Napoleon as a spy and a “My aid-de-camp Gourgaud will repair on jailor, endeavored to reply. But, entirely overboard the English squadron, with Count de Las whelmed with grief, he could not articulate a Cases. He will take his departure in the vessel word, and burst into tears. which the commander of that squadron will dis- The Emperor cordially grasped his hand, and patch either to the Admiral or to London. He said, with that melancholy serenity of countewill endeavor to obtain an audience of the Prince nance which never forsook him : “ Embrace me, Regent, and hand my letter to him. If there General! I thank you for all the care you have should not be found any inconvenience in the taken of ine. I regret that I have not known delivery of passports for the United States of you sooner. I would have attached you to my America, it is my particular wish to proceed to person. Adieu, General! Adieu !" that country. But I will not accept of passports | Sobbing uncontrollably, General Becker could for any colony. In default of America, I prefer only reply, in words almost inarticulate, “ Adieu, England to any other country. I shall take the Sire! May you be happier than we!". name of Colonel Muiron or of Duroc. If I must! As the boat approached the ship, the English go to England, I should wish to resiile in a sailors manned the yards, the marines were country-house, at the distance of ten or twelve drawn up on deck, Captain Maitland and his leagues from London, and to arrive there in the officers awaited at the gangway, and the Emper. strictest incognito. I should require a dwelling- or was received with all the respect and etiquette house sufficiently capacious to accommodate all due to his rank, his history, and his misfortunes. my suite. I am particularly anxious to avoid | As the Emperor placed his foot on board the London; and this wish must necessarily fall in Bellerophon, he said :
“Captain Maitland, I come on board your ble amazement upon this exhibition of the repubship to place myself under the protection of the lican Emperor. laws of England."
In consequence of light and contrary wirds, The Captain only replied by a low bow. He nine days passed before the Bellerophon cast anthen led the Emperor into his cabin, gave him chor in an English harbor. The Emperor, with possession of the room, and all the officers of intense interest, made himself familiar with every the Bellerophon were presented. In the mean thing on board the ship. He had won golden time the anchors were raised, the sails spread, opinions from all. He was no longer doubtful and the ship was on her way for England. Early of a cordial reception in England. His mind was in the evening, the Superb, a seventy-four gun relieved from a terrible burden of care, and his ship, bearing the flag of Admiral Hotham, hove spirits were cheerful and buoyant. The discipline in sight, and signaled the Bellerophon to cast on board the ship charmed him, and he was never anchor. The Admiral came on board, and so- weary of expressing his admiration. “What I licited permission to pay his respects to the Em- admire most," said he, " is the silence and orderperor, who had retired to his cabin. After a long ly conduct of the men. On board a French ship and friendly interview, the Emperor was invited every one calls, and gives orders, gabbling like to breakfast the next morning on board the Su- so many geese.” perb. He was received with all the honors due An English officer on board the ship records : to a sovereign. The Admiral and all the officers "He has stamped the usual impression on every of the squadron emulated each other in greeting one here, as elsewhere, of his being an extraorditheir illustrious guests with a generous hospi- nary man. Nothing escapes his notice. His eyes tality. The Admiral invited the Emperor to take are in every place and on every object, from the passage for England on board his ship, as more greatest to the most minute. All the general regucapacious and comfortable than the Bellerophon. lations of the service, from the lord high admiral The Emperor, with his usual kindness, replied, to the seamen, their duties, views, expectations,
" It is hardly worth while for a few days. Be-pay, rank, and comforts, have been scanned with sides, I should be sorry to wound the feelings of characteristic keenness and rapidity. The maCaptain Maitland, especially if present circum- chinery of the ship, blocks, masts, yards, ropes, stances are likely to forward him in his career." rigging, and every thing else underwent similar
As the Emperor was leaving the Bellerophon scrutiny." to visit the Superb, the guard was drawn up on The kind reception given to the Emperor on the quarter-deck to salute him. He stopped and board the ships had repelled all suspicions. He requested them to perform several military move- was now proceeding to England with perfect conments, giving the word of command himself. fidence, soothed by cheerful thoughts, and unapPerceiving their manner to differ from that of the prehensive of any hostile treatment there. DurFrench, he advanced into the midst of the sol- ing the whole passage the Emperor appeared trandiers, pushed their bayonets aside with his quil, and, by his kind and gentle spirit, soothed hands, and taking a musket from one of the the feelings of his grief-stricken companions. He rear-rank, went through the exercise himself. showed to Captain Maitland the portraits of his The officers and the sailors gazed with unuttera- wife and child; and tears flooded the eyes of the affectionate husband and father, as he tenderly that the Privy Council were deliberating whethspoke of being separated from those whom he so er to deliver Napoleon to the vengeance of dearly loved.
Louis XVIII., to order him to be tried by a court. During the passage the officers and the crew martial and shot, or to send him a prisoner for adopted the etiquette of the Emperor's suite. life to the dreary rock of St. Helena. The Duke They addressed him as Sire, or Your Majesty, of Wellington, England's proudest noble, who and whenever he appeared on deck every one had unworthily allowed himself to cherish feeltook off his hat. About nine o'clock in the mornings of implacable hatred toward the illustrious ing of the 25th, the Bellerophon cast anchor in republican chief, “ in his dispatches," says Count the harbor of Torbay. The moment it was an- Montholon, "urged them to adopt bloody and ternounced that the Emperor was on board, the bay rible determinations." * The earnest and kindly was covered with boats crowded with people, intended expostulation of the Duke of Sussex inmen and women of all ranks, eager to catch a duced the government to adopt the lingering exglimpse of the man who had filled the wide world ecution of insult and privation, instead of the with his renown. The Emperor kindly came more speedy agency of the bullet. upon deck several times to gratify their curiosity The harbor at Plymouth, still more than at by the exhibition of himself. All hearts seemed Torbay, was covered with boats of all descriptions. to turn toward him. The owner of a beautiful The population from thirty miles around came in country-seat, in sight of the ship, sent Napoleon a crowds to see and to greet the illustrious prisoner. present of various fruits. The ladies waved their In admiration of his greatness, and with an inhandkerchiefs and scarfs in attestation of sym- stinctive sense that he had ever been the friend pathy.
of the people, they surrounded the ship with one Admiral Keith, who was in command at Plym- continuous roar of acclamation and enthusiasm. outh, but a few miles from Torbay, wrote to Captain The Emperor was never more cordially greeted Maitland, "Tell the Emperor that I shall be happy
* See also London Timnes, July 24, 25, 1815 in being made acquainted with any thing which may be agreeable to him; and that I will do every thing in my power to comply with his wishes. Thank him in my name for the generous attentions which he personally ordered to be shown to my nephew, who was brought a prisoner to him after being wounded at Waterloo."
In the night of the 25th, the ship weighed anchor and sailed for Plymouth, where she arrived about noon the next day. Immediately the Emperor and his suite perceived a marked change in the manner in which they were treated. Captain Maitland appeared thoughtful, anxious, and extremely sad. A number of armed boats from the other lineof-battle ships and frigates in the harbor, took their stations, like sentinels, around the Bellerophon, and no one was allowed to approach without a pass from the Admiral. Two frigates were also placed as guard-ships off the Bellerophon. Had the British government been apprehenz.ve that the English people would rise and seize Napoleon and make him their king, they could not have adopted more rigorous preeautions. Rumors, taken from the daily papers, passed through the ship,
NAPOLEON AT PLYMOUTH.
even upon the banks of the Seine. His arrival that the interest accruing from this property should had produced a delirium throughout all England. be faithfully appropriated to defraying the exNotwithstanding the libels of the Ministers, the penses of his prison-house. returned soldiers had narrated in every cottage The members of the household of the Emperor, stories of his magnanimity, his kindness, his sym- in the various capacities of household service, pathy with the poor and the oppressed. He was were also informed that if they wished to accomthe man of the people, and the people instinctively pany the Emperor, they must be subjected to all surrendered to him their love and homage. From the restraints which might be deemed necessary all parts of England multitudes were crowding for securing the person of the distinguished captoward Plymouth. There were frequently nottive. “This was regarded," says Mr. Bussy, “as less than a thousand boats surrounding the Beller- an effort to deter his friends from accompanying ophon. The armed guard-boats continually row- the exile to his destination, by impressing them ing around, though they fired musketry and run with an idea of punishment for vague and undedown two boats, by which several lives were lost, fined offenses; and of having before them a life could with great difficulty keep the eager crowd of disquietude, from espionage and arbitrary conat the prescribed distance of three hundred yards. trol. If such were really the intention, however, The enthusiasm was so intense and universal, it signally failed; its sole effect being to concenthat the English government became actually ap- trate the affections of those whom it sought to prehensive that Napoleon might be rescued even terrify." on board a British line-of-battle ship and in a Thus trampling upon the British constitution, British harbor. "Two frigates were therefore," and in defiance of all justice and law, was an ilsays Sir Walter Scott," appointed to lie as guards lustrious foreigner condemned to imprisonment on the Bellerophon, and sentinels were doubled for life, without trial and even without accusation. and trebled both by day and by night."
The Ministers were so fully conscious of the illeThe Emperor was firm, thoughtful, and silent. gality of the measure, that they did not venture His friends were overwhelmed with consterna even to sign their names to the act. The Emtion. On the evening of the 30th of July, Sir peror listened to the reading of this atrocious docHenry Bunbury, Under-Secretary of State, came ument in silence, with profound calmness, and on board with Admiral Keith, and from a scrap without manifesting any emotion. He had obof paper, without signature, read to the Emperor tained such wonderful control over his own spirit the following illegal and infamous decision : that, in tones gentle and dignified, and with great
“ As it may perhaps be convenient for General mildness of manner and countenance, he simply, Bonaparte to learn, without further delay, the in yet eloquently, replied : tentions of the British government, your lordship “I am the guest of England, not her prisoner. will communicate the following information: I have come, of my own accord, to place myself
“It would be inconsistent with our duty to under the protection of the British law. In my ward our country and the Allies of his Majesty, case the government has violated the laws of its if General Bonaparte possessed the means of own country, the law of nations, and the sacred again disturbing the repose of Europe. It is on duty of hospitality. I protest against their right this account that it becomes absolutely necessary to act thus, and appeal to British honor." that he should be restrained in his personal lib- After the Admiral and Sir Henry Bunbury had erty, so far as this may be required by the fore- retired, Napoleon, in anguish of spirit, remarked going important object. The island of St. Hel- to his friends, ena has been chosen as his future residence. Its “The idea of imprisonment at St. Helena is climate is healthy, and its local position will al- perfectly horrible. To be enchained for life on low of his being treated with more indulgence an island within the tropics, at an immense disthan could be admitted in any other spot, owing tance from any land, cut off from all communicato the indispensable precautions which it would tion with the world, and every thing it contains be necessary to employ for the security of his that is dear to me! It is worse than Tamerlane's person."
iron cage! I would prefer being delivered up to It was then stated that General Bonaparte the Bourbons. They style me General ! They might select a surgeon and any three officers, ex- might as well call me Archbishop. I was head cepting Savary and Lallemand, to accompany of the church as well as of the army. Had they him, and also twelve domestics; that these per- confined me in the Tower of London, or in one sons would be regarded and treated as prisoners of the fortresses of England, though not what I of war; and that Sir George Cockburn would had hoped from the generosity of the English sail in a few days to convey the captives to their people, I should not have had so much cause for prison.
complaint. But to banish me to an island within Sir George received very rigorous instructions the tropics! They might as well sign my death to recognize Napoleon not as an Emperor but warrant at once. It is impossible that a man of simply as a General. He was to examine every my habit of body can exist long in such a cliarticle in the possession of the Emperor, baggage, mate.” wines, provisions, plate, money, diamonds, bills In the despair of this dreadful hour, in which of exchange, and salable effects of all kinds. Napoleon first confronted insult, separation from Every thing of value thus seized was to be placed all his friends and from every earthly joy, lifein the hands of the Ministers. He was informed long imprisonment upon the ocean's most dreary
rock, and the deprivations and sufferings of those | eagerly volunteered their efforts to place the outfaithful followers who still clung to him, he seem-l lawed Emperor under the protection of the Brited, for an instant only, to have wavered in his ish constitution. usual fortitude. For a time he slowly paced the The French gentlemen composing the suite floor of the cabin, apparently perfectly calm, yet of the Emperor were in great consternation, since oppressed by the enormity of the doom descend- but four of them could be permitted to accompany ing upon his friends and upon himself. His first him to St. Helena. Their attachment to Napothoughts even then seemed to be for his compan- leon was so strong that all were anxious to share ions. As he slowly walked to and fro, he said, his dreary and life-long imprisonment. Dreadful in the absent manner of soliloquy,
as was this doom, “we did not hesitate to de“After all, am I quite sure of going to St. sire," says Las Cases, " that each of us might be Helena? Is a man dependent upon others when among those whom the Emperor would choose ; he wishes that his dependence should cease?" entertaining but one fear, that of finding our
Then turning to Las Cases, he added, "My selves excluded." friend! I have sometimes an idea of quitting you. Two of the daily papers generously and warmThis would not be very difficult. It is only ne- | ly espoused the cause of the Emperor. The cessary to create a little mental excitement (Il ne voice of the people grew louder. The number of s'agit que de se monter un tant soit peu la tête), boats daily increased, and so crowded the Beland I shall soon have escaped. All will be over, lerophon that discharges of musketry were emand you can then tranquilly rejoin your families.”ployed to keep them at a distance. Wherever
Las Cases, remonstrating warmly against such the Emperor appeared upon deck, he was grected suggestions, replied, “Sire! we will live upon with constantly increasing enthusiasm of acclaim. the past. There is enough of that to satisfy us. Napoleon began to be cheered by the hope that Do we not enjoy the life of Casar and of Alex- the despotism of the government would Le comander? We shall possess still more ; you will pelled to yield to the pressure of public opinicn. reperuse yourself, Sire!"
The Northumberland, under the command of The cloud immediately passed away from the Admiral Cockburn, was to convey ike En peror spirit of the Emperor. - Be it so,” he promptly to St. Helena. This ship was at Ports niouth, replied ; " we will write our memoirs. Yes, we not quite ready for so long a voyage. The Minmust be employed, for occupation is the scythe isters were exceedingly uneasy in view of the of time. After all, a man ought to fulfill his des- public developments in favor of the Emperor. tinies. This is my grand doctrine. Very well! They consequently uiged the utmost possible Let mine be accomplished.” Instantly resum dispatch to hasten the departure of the ship. ing his accustomed serenity and cheerfulness, he Under these circumstances, by the advice of an changed the topic of conversation.
Eng‘ish lawyer, the Emperor wrote the followThe officers of the Bellerophon had all become ing Protest, to be forwarded to the English gov. attached to the Emperor. From the Captain to eriment: the humblest sailors they were all exceedingly
PROTEST. mortified and chagrined at the treatment their “I hereby solemnly protest, in the face of illustrious guest was receiving from the Minis- Heaven and mankind, against the violence that ters.* Many English gentlemen, in London, also is done me, and the violation of my most sacred
rights in forcibly disposing of my person and lib* The English government felt so embarrassed by con- erty. I voluntarily came on board the Beller. scious guilt that a year after they passed a law to sanc. ophon. I am not the prisoner, I am the guest tify the crime. Mackintosh, in his “ History of England," iii. 133, drawing a parallel between Napoleon and Mary Queen of Scots, says, “Neither of them was born a Brit
Captain himself, who said he had orders from ish subject, or had committed any offense within the ju- the government to receive and convey me to Enrisdiction of England. Consequently neither of them was gland, together with my suite, if agreeable to me. amenable to English law. The imprisonment of neither was conformable to the law of England or the law of na
under the protection of the laws of England. tions."
Still, Sir James Mackintosh justifies the crime upon the When once on board the Bellerophon, I was enplea of necessity. In reference to the subsequent act, by titled to the hospitality of the British people. If which the government attempted to legalize an outrage
the government, in giving the Captain of the Bel. already committed, he says, " Agreeably to this view of the matter, the detention of Napoleon was legalized by an
lerophon orders to receive me, only wished to lay act of the British Parliament.* By the bare passing of a snare, it has forfeited its honor and disgraced such an act, it was tacitly assumed that the antecedent its flag. If this act be consummated, it will be detention was without warrant of law. This evident in vain for the English henceforth to talk of their truth is more fully admitted by the language of the statute,
sincerity, their laws, and liberties. British faith which, in assigning the reason for passing it, alleges that
it is necessary for the preservation of the tranquillity of will have been lost in the hospitality of the BelEurope, and for the general safety, that Napoleon Bonaparte should be detained and kept in custody ;' and it is
“I appeal to history. It will say that an enstill more explicitly declared by a specific enactment, which pronounces that he shall be deemed and taken to be, and emy, who made war for twenty years against the shall be treated and dealt with as a prisoner of war'-a distinct admission that he was not so in contemplation of law, until the statute had imposed that character upon What more striking proof could he give of his him." • 56 Geo. III. cap. 29, A.D. 1816.
esteem and confidence? But how did England
ard with a