Puslapio vaizdai

Napoleon had the lavish hand of a parvenu, but from Paris as an intriguer by the Committee

a his beneficiaries were not grateful, and with of Public Safety, kept under surveillance in ever-increasing insolence were always craving Switzerland by the Directory, her offers more. The system of private confiscations spurned by Bonaparte, she spent the ten or forced contributions from individuals had years of her banishment in wandering from already attained vast dimensions. During the court to court through England, Russia, winter of 1809-10 it was extended and regu- Prussia, and Sweden, undermining Napoleon's lated; the sums wrung from German princes character, and fomenting the coalitions which and Spanish grandees, from English mer- eventually ruined him. Her study of regenchants and the Italian clergy, were not en- erated Germany was in the main a valuable tirely exhausted; the remainder, together book; influential as it was, it held up to France with what was « accepted » from timorous as a model the course of her bitterest foe, and politicians, crafty ecclesiastics, sly contrac- the censors heightened its renown by their tors, and unprincipled financiers, was now efforts to suppress it. The decennial prizes, erected into the dignity of the Emperor's instituted to promote letters and learning, « extraordinary domain. The term «army were distributed in 1810. Most of the names chest » had been devised for times of higher of those who were crowned are now known public morality; it was now discarded. Con- to none except the curious. fiscated palaces, forests, lands, fisheries, During the season of 1810-11 the Empemoneys from the sale of American ships- ror's private life was virtually devoted to beneall were now the Emperor's private property. ficence. In addition to the favors granted to We should not be astonished at the revenues Carnot, he lavished money on other objects, of his great officials. Berthier had 1,350,800 some not so worthy. Canova, who had been francs a year; Davout, 910,000; Ney, 728,000; called from Rome to make a portrait-statue and Masséna, 500,000; naturally Soult wished of the Empress, obtained a substantial grant to augment his 305,000, and for that end for the learned societies of that city. Chénier, sought the crown of Portugal. What with like Carnot, had been a pronounced adversary the public charities, the public works, and of the Empire. He now sought employment such lavish bribery, the expenditure had risen under it, and was made inspector-general of to 430,000,000; but the receipts by the means the university, an office which he did not live enumerated above had been swollen to 760,- long to enjoy. All the old favorites were 000,000, so that Napoleon had 330,000,000 in remembered in a general distribution of good

things. Talleyrand having just lost an imLegislative independence extinguished, a mense sum by the failure of a trusted bank, privy purse of immense capacity established, the Emperor came to his relief by purchasing the greed of useful supporters temporarily one of his most splendid palaces for more satisfied, the censorship of the press made than 2,000,000 francs. The court resided rigid, there was but one other measure essen- sometimes at St. Cloud, sometimes at Ramtial to complete tyranny, and that was taken. bouillet, sometimes at the Trianon, but for There were many disaffected persons in the the most part at Fontainebleau, where the Empire too powerful to be left at liberty, but ceremonious life, to which all concerned were too dangerous to be tried in open court. Six now well accustomed, was marked by none of state prisons were established for this numer- the old awkwardness, but ran as brilliantly as ous class, and gradually a colony of helpless lavish expenditure could make it. The pregmalcontents, outraged in every human right, nancy of the Empress was celebrated with was confined in each. Where was the en- great festivities, during which Napoleon perlightened public opinion of France? Where, formed one of his most applauded acts--the indeed? The publishers bought the slender endowment of a vast maternity hospital. The immunities they enjoyed with considerable Empress was brought into great prominence sums, and this gold was used to pension as the president of a society consisting of a needy men of letters; other writers were thousand noble ladies, under whose patronage given decorations that carried subsidies with the charity was placed. them; some were elevated into the new bar- The unconcealed and ecstatic delight of the onage. The great majority of those who should prospective father found vent in delicate and have formed and molded public opinion were tender attention to the mother of his child, subservient to the government. Even Carnot and until her deliverance he was a gentle, accepted a pension of 10,000 francs. The devoted, and considerate husband. His whole standing exception was Mme. de Staël, who, nature seemed transformed. When in the having been scorned, never forgave. Ordered early morning of March 20, 1811, word was

his purse.

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brought that the Empress was in labor, and vain, after all, and the man-child, coming that a false presentation made it of instant without a cry into the world, and lying breathnecessity to choose between the life of the less for seven minutes, as if hesitating to acmother and that of the child, the feelings of cept or decline his destiny, finally gave a wail the Emperor can better be imagined than as he caught the breath of life. Napoleon described. If the expected heir should die, turned, caught up his treasure, and pressed it his dynasty would be jeopardized, his enemies to his bosom. A hundred guns announced the would once more be making appointments birth, and the city burst into jubilations, which over his grave, the hopes of a lifetime might were reëchoed throughout Europe from Dantbe shattered. But there was not a moment's zic to Cadiz. Festival succeeded festival, and wavering. « Think only of the mother,» he for an interval men believed that the temple cried.

of Janus would be again closed. No boy ever The fears of the attending physician were came on the earthly stage amid such splendors, or seemed destined to honors such as This was a rupture of the Concordat, and appeared to await this one. The passionate pious Catholics were very uneasy lest such devotion of the father was constant from the a declaration of war should heighten the beginning. It lasted even after he had been Emperor's bellicose humor. A church coundeserted and betrayed by the mother, after cil was summoned, and proving as subserthe child had been estranged and turned into vient to the secular authority as the Jewan Austrian prince.

ish Sanhedrim had been, its representations brought Pius VII. to terms. It is impossible

to determine whether the threat against THE ARRAY OF NATIONS.

Russia was really made as represented, or MANY addresses were sent congratulating whether the address to the chamber of comthe Emperor on the birth of his child. The merce has not been confused with the speech most important was that from the Paris from the throne made to the legislature when chamber of commerce, and to this he made it opened in June. But, in either case, all a reply which attracted general attention. Europe was convinced at the close of March Its substance was the assurance that the Con- that Napoleon was contemplating war against tinental system had told heavily against Eng- Russia. land, whose storehouses were glutted with Yet his position was far from fixed. Moved colonial wares and her own products, for by paternal tenderness, he appears to have which no market could be found. Declaring considered the possibility of merely holding himself the successor of Charles the Great, what he had gained in order to consolidate Napoleon promised to have a navy in four his splendid empire for his heir. The mass years, and in ten years to ruin England. of his army was withdrawn from central EuHe boasted of his success in producing sugar rope, his demands on Prussia were diminished, from beets, of his own great wealth, and and the indemnity fixed; Spain he hoped to of Austrian bankruptcy. There are three pacify, feeling sure that Great Britain was versions of this famous talk, and in one of weary of the bloody warfare in the peninsula, them are the words: «I showed mercy to the since she had finally consented to exchange Emperor of Russia at Tilsit in return for his prisoners on his terms; and he never doubted promises of help; but if those promises are that his arrangements on the North Sea coast not kept, I will go, if need be, to Riga, to would finally be acceptable to the inhabitants. Moscow, to St. Petersburg.) The utterances The indications that he realized his true situaare both imperial and imperious, typical of tionare, however,stronger. He could not pause; dictatorial self-sufficiency.

too long his motto had been, «More beyond.» Three points in the address demand atten- Sometimes the expression « Emperor of the tion: the absence of all reference to French Continent» escaped his lips; and in March finance, the ignoring of the ecclesiastical situ- orders were issued to fit out two naval exation, and the threat against Russia. Metter- peditions, one against Sicily and Egypt, one nich reported that, although France was the against Ireland. He is reported to have said: richest country in the world, her treasury was « They want to know where we are going, empty. There were receipts of 900,000,000 where I shall plant the new Pillars of Herfrancs in 1811, but a deficit of 54,000,000 was cules. We will make an end of Europe, and threatened, the appropriations for army and then, as robbers fling themselves on others navy having been raised from 510,000,000 to less bold, we will fling ourselves on India.» 650,000,000. Determined to make each gen- About the same time the Bavarian minister, eration pay its own expenses, the Emperor pleading for peace, received the retort: increased the indirect taxes, and instituted a « Three years more, and I am lord of the state monopoly in tobacco. But the summer universe.) Mollien thought war inadvisable had been one long drought, and Russia did on account of the fiscal disorders. «On the not import French silks and wines to the contrary,» said Napoleon, « the finances are usual amount, so that the year closed with an falling into disorder, and for that very reason actual deficit of 48,000,000. The wealth re- need war.» ferred to by the Emperor was his own. Since England, though hard pressed, was still unhis incarceration at Savona, the Pope, having daunted. The doubtful personage was the Czar steadily refused to institute the bishops nomi- of Muscovy. He was now thirty-two. Fourteen nated by Napoleon, not only still persisted in years earlier he had associated much with this, but now took higher ground, forbidding Czartoryski, when undergoing the training the chapters of both Italy and France to elect for his destined rôle of enlightened despot. the imperial nominees as vicars capitular. This Polish youth had conversed at length


about restoring Poland as a member of the In 1809 Alexander had negotiated, through Russian empire, and in 1805 Alexander had Caulaincourt, a treaty the terms of which seriously contemplated action in that di- were that Poland should never be restored, rection. But he soon paused, and Czarto- and the name never used officially. Probably ryski retired to his estates. The results of the idea had no connection with the Russian Tilsit were disappointing to Alexander, and marriage scheme, but nevertheless it is posthe idea of a reconstructed Poland was dis- sible that it had; for, had Napoleon assented, missed for fear of adding another to the Alexander could then have refused the hand of European nationalities whose fixed terri- his sister, and have laughed in his sleeve at his

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torial boundaries were a menace to Russia's outwitted dupe. As it turned out, Napoleon schemes of aggrandizement. His adhesion to suggested a counter-proposition, promising Napoleon's commercial system had proved too «never to give help or assistance to any power, high a price to pay for Finland; neither Mol- or to any internal rising whatsoever, looking to davia nor Wallachia was yet secured, and a restoration of the kingdom of Poland.» A few Oldenburg was incorporated in France. The days after the arrival of his despatch at St. PeFranco-Austrian alliance was a menace to all tersburg came the news of the Austrian marthe Czar's schemes for the Balkan Peninsula. riage. The Czarat once took into consideration Czartoryski was recalled, and found his friend his future course. To Prince Galitzin he wrote with drawn features and haggard eyes, an evi- concerning the expediency of restoring Podent prey to fright. Beaten at his own game land, with himself as king; but after dallying and humiliated, the ambitious philosopher- with the idea for a time, he told Czartoryski monarch found himself compelled either to that he could not consider restoring the Pobreak with France or to keep his promises. lish provinces already incorporated in Russia,

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